mini-Book Review: Moonglass by Jessi Kirby

Posted June 27, 2013 by Stormy in Books / 10 Comments


by Jessi Kirby


Original Publishing Date: May 3rd, 2011
Length: 232 pages
Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Obtained Via: Bought at Hastings
Format Read In: Hardback
View at the Traffic Light:


from Goodreads:

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.


I picked up Moonglass because Jessi Kirby’s name has been going around the blogosphere quite a bit with her recent release of Golden, which almost everyone I know seems to love. I picked up Moonglass on a whim when browsing the used section of the bookstore and recognizing Kirby’s name. And while I wasn’t absolutely blown away by the book or the story or the writing, I did find a certain kind of appeal in this book.

I’m not going to lie: I found the beginning of this book dreadfully boring. It took me days to get past page 30, and I almost DNF-ed once or twice. The book’s pacing is glacial, and while I sometimes like slow stories, I’d say it’s also this book’s biggest flaw. If you’re in the mood for a fast-paced adventure, well, look elsewhere.

After I got over the slow start, though, I did enjoy Anna’s story. She’s learning how to heal after her mother’s death, which is a process I understand well. I thought Kirby did a really great job of portraying Anna’s thoughts and actions as she works through her grief. I also think some people will find the bit about sea glass and moon glass interesting, though I will say that I was not one of those readers.

There are other characters in the story, but really, this is Anna’s story, from beginning to end. It’s summery, but not light. It’s slow, but moving in some places. It’s not a book I’ll recommend wide and far, but I think for certain readers it will resonate well.

Final Impression: Moonglass is a good, but not awesome, book. It’s definitely for fans of contemporary and probably won’t have a lot of cross-over appeal, but Anna’s story is touching and there’s definitely a “beach” sensation that invades the book. Some people might find the beginning a bit too boring to get through, but I think it will resonate with some readers much more than it did with me. 3/5 cupcakes.



3 Stars

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10 responses to “mini-Book Review: Moonglass by Jessi Kirby

  1. Lisa

    I have also been hearing quite a bit about Jessi Kirby but haven’t gotten the chance to read any of her books yet. I have also heard a lot of good reviews, but also a few mixed ones when it comes to Moonglass. I purchased Moonglass for a dollar at my library sale, and hope to read it before the summer is over. If its good than awesome! But if not, I won’t be too upset, since it was only a dollar (:

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  2. I’ve definitely heard Kirby’s name around the blogs I visit and based off what I’ve heard about Golden, it’s a book that I would enjoy. This book also sounds something like I would enjoy because I would love to see how Anna handles her grief and what those tempting “secrets” in the synopsis are. Great review, Stormy! 🙂

  3. Have you read Kirby’s In Honor? I’m a huge fan of all of Kirby’s work but Moonglass pales in comparison to In Honor in terms of readability. I would agree that Moonglass‘ pacing certainly had the tendency to lag in parts, although that never bothered me as I’ve come to appreciate a more gradual, subtle approach when it comes to Kirby’s writing. I think she handles universal topics like grief and love in a very touching and accessible way and I’m really looking forward to reading Golden based on my positive experience with her past two works.

    I’m sorry this book wasn’t as enjoyable as you could have hoped, but I would highly recommend In Honor as I think that’s Kirby at her best! The romance is absolutely adorable and I think her growth is truly evident in terms of her advancing skill level with each subsequent book.

    • stormydawnc

      I haven’t read In Honor. I still really want to read Golden, but I’ve been a bit skeptical of In Honor(not sure it sounds like my kind of book). I’ll have to check it out & see if I like it!

    • stormydawnc

      I haven’t read Golden, so I can’t really speak to that, BUT I will say that despite the fact my overall impression of this novel was positive, it was clear it was a debut and I’d say you’re probably right to push it to the bottom. It’s a good read, but it wasn’t FANTASTIC or anything.

  4. I love the cover for this book … bloggers keep posting about it and I keep staring at the cover. It sounds like it would be a light read once you get past the beginning. I have a rule about not buying books just because of the pretty covers because it never works out for me!

    • stormydawnc

      I try to keep to that rule too. . . but I think I fail miserably most of the time! It’s definitely a good read once it picks up a bit.

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