When The Moon Was Ours – An Enchanting and Enigmatic Modern Fairytale

When The Moon Was Ours – An Enchanting and Enigmatic Modern Fairytale

Lush and vivid imagery make for a beautifully written, if somewhat enigmatic, modern fairytale.  Fresh character concepts blend with universal and timeless themes to make something that feels weighty and exotic, and yet, still welcoming.  In short, Anna-Marie McLemore spins a pretty and a pretty strange tale that I gave four stars.

Goodreads Summary

To everyone who knows them, best friends Miel and Sam are as strange as they are inseparable. Roses grow out of Miel’s wrist, and rumors say that she spilled out of a water tower when she was five. Sam is known for the moons he paints and hangs in the trees, and for how little anyone knows about his life before he and his mother moved to town. But as odd as everyone considers Miel and Sam, even they stay away from the Bonner girls, four beautiful sisters rumored to be witches. Now they want the roses that grow from Miel’s skin, convinced that their scent can make anyone fall in love. And they’re willing to use every secret Miel has fought to protect to make sure she gives them up.

My Thoughts

The book is paced for a leisurely read – rife with descriptions of pumpkins and petals, well drawn emotions, and pauses where characters ponder how much self discovery they can handle.  Both Miel and Sam are carefully crafted characters that transcend the page, and I enjoyed their journey towards acceptance.  I loved their friendship – the kind that lasts despite  the ugliness of life.  At the same time, the magical realism did, as usual, leave me feeling like I was a step behind.  I never fully understood the mystical bond of the Bonner sisters, and that left me a little frustrated.  Don’t get me started on the glass pumpkins – that is a mystery beyond my comprehension.  However, if you are willing to embrace the tale and let go of some of your rational questions, this is enchanting.  Some language and sexual situations make this most appropriate for the 15+ crowd.

I received an ARC from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.


About queenbook

When the final bell rings, I stash those messy piles of essays and analysis assignments in a desk drawer and I head home to a pile of good books. My kids and dog eat too many chicken nuggets and the house could be neater, but as long as I get my daily read, I guess we are doing all right. When I was twelve and fifteen and eighteen and twenty, I believed I needed to get out there and do those things I had just been reading about, which ended in disaster, tears, a tattoo that scares me every time I catch a glimpse of it in the mirror, and the realization that some of us are meant for action, and some of us are meant to critique the pace of action in a book. I read primarily YA fiction as I have a rather hulking classroom library and a hundred high school readers to engage daily. Nothing makes me happier than coming to school and finding an impatient teenager waiting by my door to turn in a book and get another one just like it. I adore a good zombie, a medieval princess, or girl assassin (I would like them all in one book if you are a writer looking for some inspiration). I add historical mystery to my wish list a year in advance, and you should get out of my way when the next Outlander book comes out. I have an embarrassing fondness for rock star books, but only if they don’t get too trashy and embarrass me. My favorite book of all time is The Blue Castle by L.M. Montgomery. My book boyfriends include Gilbert Blythe, Alonzo Wilder, and Jamie Fraser. They are mine and you can’t have them.

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