Title: The Moon and More
Author: Sarah Dessen
Genre: YA, Contemporary, Romance
My Rating: 4 Stars
"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."
I really liked the plot, the story, the voice, but I had a really hard time taking to the characters, aside from Emaline, who I only started to like towards the end. It’s not that I thought they were bad characters, because they weren’t. They were great, as are most, if not all, of Sarah Dessen’s characters, but I found it hard to relate to any of them. I found myself against most of their choices, actions, etc.
Other than that, I really enjoyed this book. Emaline is practically an adult, and it shows, but she’s also still only a teenager testing the waters of adulthood, as she plans her future, struggles to keep a relationship with her father, and is torn between her long-time boyfriend Luke, and the new guy Theo.
Luke is the type of guy who you can’t help but like when you first meet him, even fictitiously, but as I, the reader, got to know him through Emaline’s eyes, he wasn’t as great as he seemed. Theo is pretentious and slightly annoying with his enthusiasm. He strives for greatness, with everything he does. Why do something just ‘okay’ when you can do something ‘great.’ Why go to State college when you’ve been accepted to Columbia? This said, I preferred Luke over Theo, though neither were very likable in my opinion.
Overall: This book is less of a romance, as it explores Emaline’s transition into becoming an adult. I felt like it was more a personal journey for her, rather than simply being about her summer romance with Theo, though he played large part in her journey. I would definitely recommend this book, but if you are looking for intense love, action, or drama, this isn’t the book for you. The Moon and More is subtle but amazing, though I’ll admit I was a teeny bit disappointed after reading this, as I had anticipated it for so long, however that’s more on me than it is the book.
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