Author: Jessi Kirby
Publisher: Simon & Schuster (May 3, 2011)
From Jessi Kirby, a debut novel about confronting the past in order to move ahead.
"I read once that water is a symbol for emotions. And for a while now, I've thought maybe my mother drowned in both."
Anna's life is upended when her father accepts a job transfer the summer before her junior year. It's bad enough that she has to leave her friends and her life behind, but her dad is moving them to the beach where her parents first met and fell in love- a place awash in memories that Anna would just as soon leave under the surface. While life on the beach is pretty great, with ocean views and one adorable lifeguard in particular, there are also family secrets that were buried along the shore years ago. And the ebb and flow of the ocean's tide means that nothing- not the sea glass that she collects on the sand and not the truths behind Anna's mother's death- stays buried forever.
I recently managed to read Moonglass by Jessi Kirby on Pulse It, a really cool website set up by Simon and Schuster where you can read free, recently-released books (normally YA lit if I’m not wrong, that suits me perfectly) every month! You can’t download a copy of the novel, you only have a limited time to read a title before they take it down, and there’s only like 2 new books available each time, but it’s still pretty reasonable to me considering how you just have to register for an account.
Anyway. Moving on! I’d been hearing tons of good things about Moonglass, but the cynical me was wary about reading an over-hyped book, especially from a debut author. I mean, who likes getting crushed with disappointment after having such high anticipations for a book and finding out it’s not as great as everyone made it out to be? So it was definitely with some trepidation that I started reading Moonglass...only that the further I got into the book, the more I didn’t want it to end!
Moonglass was definitely different from all your other contemporary reads. It does have all your usual YA story elements, such as a very cute boy (a lifeguard no less!!), a sad past the protagonist has to overcome, trouble with family etc. But the premise was pretty different and the story captured my interest throughout, which I cannot say the same for a couple of other similar stories. I enjoyed Anna’s journey of self-discovery, love and friendship as she was trying to cope with her los...more Moonglass does have all your usual contemporary YA elements, such as a very cute boy (a lifeguard no less!!), a sad past the protagonist has to overcome, trouble with family etc. But the story captured my interest throughout, which I cannot say the same for a couple of other similar stories. I enjoyed Anna’s journey of self-discovery, love and friendship as she was trying to cope with her loss. While her mother’s death was an important part of the story, I liked how it wasn’t the ONLY thing going on; we have Anna’s talent and passion in running, the romance with Tyler (which was very believable and real) and her relationship with her father, among others. Jessi Kirby’s writing was just beautiful. Some of the scenes had very vivid and well-written imagery that enabled me to imagine the beauty of it all, and I liked how seaglass was used to represent a lot of things, including Anna’s self-growth and her relationship with her mother.
I loved Moonglass to bits, not only for the storyline and characters and the amazing writing, but also for the emotions that the book made me feel. The ending of the story left me feeling a tad too sentimental and reflective, but who’s complaining? If you’re looking for a book that leaves you thinking and feeling, Moonglass is for you.