Rating:

Reviewed by Jennifer Jensen

17-year-old Anna Ryan is less than thrilled when her father informs her that they are moving away from everything she has ever known: her friends, her school…and the place where her mother died. But Crystal Cove, Anna’s new home, is where her parents fell in love and where Anna was born. Pretty quickly the charming beach town wins Anna over, as she begins to appreciate its handsome lifeguards (especially one named Tyler Evans) and its rich history–fascinating and sometimes devastating.

Being back in Crystal Cove and meeting people who once knew her mother is keeping Anna lost in the past when she should be focusing on the present and future. Every time she tries to question her father about her mother, he clams up. If Anna wants to know the truth, she’ll have to find it out for herself.

Sarah Dessen is absolutely correct in saying that Jessi Kirby’s Moonglass is “an incredible first novel”. Kirby’s vivid descriptions of the ocean, sea glass, and mythical tales made me feel as if I were right on the beach experiencing Anna’s life right along with her. She takes her time revealing the secret of Anna’s mother, and developing the romance between Anna and Tyler. This is not just another candy-sweet coming of age story; I absolutely loved Tyler, but this is less about first loves and more about growing up and accepting loss.

Moonglass is so well-plotted from Anna’s memories of she and her mother searching for sea glass in the moonlight (which Anna calls “moonglass”) to the snippets of history of the Crystal Cove residents. I knew those histories were important, and it was beautiful and heartbreaking to finally reach the moment where Anna’s present intersected with the past.

Moonglass is a perfect book in every way, a book that I will cherish and share with my own daughter someday; I can’t wait to read and fall in love with it all over again.

Rating: 5/5 (first 5 star rating I’ve given!)

Jennifer graduated from the University of Utah with a BA in English. She occasionally dabbles with her own fiction writing, particularly with the Young Adult and Paranormal genres. She currently resides in Utah with her husband and daughter.

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Review and giveaway copies were provided free of any obligation by Simon & Schuster’s Children’s Publishing. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.