Thursday, October 16, 2014

Book Review: The Moon and More by Sarah Dessen

I rated it 3 out of 5 stars.

Overview: Luke is the perfect boyfriend: handsome, kind, fun. He and Emaline have been together all through high school in Colby, the beach town where they both grew up. But now, in the summer before college, Emaline wonders if perfect is good enough.

Enter Theo, a super-ambitious outsider, a New Yorker assisting on a documentary film about a reclusive local artist. Theo's sophisticated, exciting, and, best of all, he thinks Emaline is much too smart for Colby.

Emaline's mostly-absentee father, too, thinks Emaline should have a bigger life, and he's convinced that an Ivy League education is the only route to realizing her potential. Emaline is attracted to the bright future that Theo and her father promise. But she also clings to the deep roots of her loving mother, stepfather, and sisters. Can she ignore the pull of the happily familiar world of Colby?

Emaline wants the moon and more, but how can she balance where she comes from with where she's going?

Sarah Dessen's devoted fans will welcome this story of romance, yearning, and, finally, empowerment. It could only happen in the summer.

Review: In high school, my best friend at the time introduced me to Sarah Dessen. She lended me her books, but I soon caught fever of Dessen's stories and started buying my own copies. My favorites of hers are still Just Listen and  The Truth About Forever. Sarah Dessen is queen when it comes to writing contemporaries from the female perspective. Even though my then best friend and I lost touch, I still continue reading Dessen's books in my adult years. It reminds me a bit of my adolescence and also inspires me to write a contemporary.

So when The Moon and More came out and I heard about the less than stellar reviews, I kind of avoided reading it until I forgot about it completely. Then I heard about her latest sale that was announced about a month ago. Knowing there was another book coming out, I got my hands on this one so I could be up to date.

Although I enjoyed the story and the message of empowerment, I had to agree with the other reviewers by giving this a three. It just seemed too... predictable. And predictability is always an issue with me. The other thing was the characters. There wasn't really enough stake to make me care about the protagonist nor the other characters (besides the MC's little brother). And third, the writing was just too verbose that I found myself skipping over a lot of paragraphs (something I hardly do as I like to eat up every single word in a story, lest I miss something!).

Nevertheless, I continue to be a fan of Sarah Dessen. A great story, but just a three for me on this one. I'm still excited for the next Dessen book though, so don't let this review dissuade you from reading her other books!

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