Saturday, 15 June 2013

Review: The Moon and More by Sarah Dessen

The Moon and More
by Sarah Dessen
Release Date: June 4, 2013
Publisher: Viking Juvenile
Pages: 384

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 troute to realizing her potential. Emaline is attacted 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. 


After reading The Moon and More I can say with the utmost confidence that Sarah Dessen is my favorite author of all time. Her writing is completely mesmerizing and it just gets better with every book. However, I feel that The Moon and More falls slightly short of all of Sarah Dessen's other works. This book is no This Lullaby. And while it is expected that Dessen's books can't all be as good as This Lullaby, I was a bit disappointed.

I think the thing that bothered me the most with this book was the romance. Neither of the romances were developed enough, and I didn't feel any attachment to either guy. Sarah Dessen attempted a love triangle but I didn't really like the way she went about writing it. Luke was a douchebag, of course I didn't like him, and although Theo was slightly better, their relationship was never explained very much, and it came to a dead end. At the end of the book, Emaline never said what happened with her and Theo, even though they broke up. I thought there should be some sort of closure at the end, but there wasn't. There just didn't seem to be a central plot direction. Maybe there was, and I'm just completely missing it, but I don't think so. So therefore, the romance kind of sucked.

Emaline as a protagonist was ok. Sarah Dessen's heroines usually have some sort of gusto that is different from other heroines seen in YA fiction, but Emaline is definitely at the end of the list for me. She seemed cold, rude, and I just wasn't able to make connections with her that well. I understand that she had gone through a lot, but her character was... not really relatable and obnoxious.

But, of course, reading this book was a definitely a treat. Sarah Dessen's writing is perfect, when I say perfect, I mean MORE than perfect. Each sentence was perfectly formed and fit together like a puzzle. I can't get enough of the words she writes, and despite my complaints, I was sad when this book was over. No more Sarah Dessen until...I don't know when, but not for at least a couple years. There are still some Dessen books I haven't read, so I'm definitely on those soon.

If you're hesitating to read The Moon and More, I would say that there are some legit things to be hesitant about, but if you are a Sarah Dessen fan, then go for it! Most of the reviews I see are 5-star perfect, but this just wasn't my favorite Dessen. So this might be me just being picky and you might LOVE this book.


  1. Sorry that The Moon and More didn't meet your expectations! For me, I always find it hard to accept that one of your favorite authors had disappointed you :(
    Luke doesn't sound like a good love interest, what with him being a douchebag and all. The way you describe him kind of reminds me of Will Herondale. Except, you know, he is a *good* character that just has does moments when you want to smack him, and he is quite funny :P And Emaline sounds like...meh. Dessen's writing does seem pretty, though!

    Amazing review, Annie! You keep getting better and better :D

  2. Aww I can see why it would disappoint. In What Happened to Goodbye her writing structure was a little different than usual and I think she's trying to get out of her comfort zone in writing this one as well. And she had to put in a love triangle! DX

    So many people talked about how everything didn't feel closured up, so I guess that's going to be a peeve for me as well.


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