Saturday, April 23, 2011

Review: Moonglass by Jessi Kirby

Moonglass by Jessi Kirby

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.

Moonglass was a beautifully written debut novel by Jessi Kirby that will surely appeal to fans of contemporary novels like those of Sarah Dessen and Jenny Han.

I loved how the setting was so real. I could hear the crash of the waves in the background and hear the creaks of the floorboards in the old cottages. The places described in Moonglass just came alive and literally jumped off the pages. Since I read this in the middle of winter, it left me craving a visit to the beach.

The characters were another fantastic aspect of the story. Anna, the main character, particularly. Her mother died when she was younger and when the book begins she is moving to a cottage on the beach where her parents first met. Reading about Anna’s relationship with her father was a fantastic side story and one of the most developed. Parents don’t often play a huge role in young adult novels, but this was certainly not the case with Moonglass. In addition to spending time with her father, Anna is also haunted by her mother’s death. The more time she spends at the cove the more Anna learns about her mother’s history and death. Anna doesn’t let anything stop her from finding out what she needs to know and she learns a lot not only about her parents, but about herself in her new home. I especially liked how real Anna was. She was just a typical teenager and wasn’t afraid to step out of her comfort zone at times. The more I read about her, the more I liked her and wanted to get to know her in real life.

There are so many well done sub-plots tied together in this novel. Anna’s friendship with some of the local girls, her love of running, a local tragedy, and even a hint of romance. Tyler was such a fantastic character. He was anything but the typical handsome, rugged lifeguard. The moment he and Anna first meant each other, I knew they had to get together. Watching their relationship develop was sweet, and it was portrayed very realistically.

I experienced so many emotions while reading; and went from crying to laughing on a dime. Jessi Kirby is a wonderful writer and in just over 200 pages she enraptured me with Anna’s story.

I highly recommend picking Moonglass up this spring and summer. It will make you want to run out to the beach and run your toes through the sand while searching the waves for sea glass. Plus be on the lookout for hot lifeguards! ;) I am eagerly awaiting Jessi’s next release and I will be recommending this to as many people as I can.

Overall: 5 out of 5 stars

May 3, 2011/Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing/224 Pages/Young Adult

Source: Teen Book Scene (ARC Tour) and Publisher (Hardcover)


  1. Oh, I so want to read this book and your review made me more excited for it. Thanks!

  2. Great review! I love it when a book makes you feel so many different emotions. I must check this one out! :)

  3. Thank you Kelsey, for such a beautiful review!

  4. Great review! I'm going to be starting this one, and I'm really hoping I'll love it as much as you did.

  5. Ive heard soo many great things about this book. I cant wait to get my hands on my own copy!:D


  6. I really do adore this type of novel. Just the way life is portrayed just right so you feel everything that's happening. Lovely. I'm really excited to read this one. Riding the tidal wave of emotions is great every now and then.

  7. Great review! I'm so glad you liked it; I have to check it out!

  8. Living at the beach sounds like such a dream, but I imagine it also felt like she had the ghost of her mother around to. Hard to get a fresh start in a place full of memories. Thanks for the review!

  9. Wow, Moonglass sounds great! I haven't read anything by Jessi Kirby, but I want to pick this up now.

  10. This sounds like a great summer read! I can't wait to get started. Thanks for the giveaway!

  11. This book sounds so good, I have had my eye on it for awhile. Your review makes me think that I would really like Anna and her story.


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