where our team of writers love to talk all things books, sharing reviews, features, lists, interviews and more.

Getting lost in a book is escapism at it's finest and it's what everyone who contributes here thrives on.


Serious Moonlight | Jenn Bennett | Review

Raised in isolation and home-schooled by her strict grandparents, the only experience Birdie has had of the outside world is through her favourite crime books. But everything changes when she takes a summer job working the night shift at a historic Seattle hotel.

Birdie Lindberg loves a mystery. After the death of her mother, and under the strict, watchful eye of her grandmother, the only adventures Birdie ever had where the ones she read about in the pages of her favourite mystery novels. But Birdie is eighteen now, her grandmother has passed away too, and Birdie and her grandfather both agree that it's time for Birdie to go out into the world and find her own adventures. Starting with taking a job working the night shift at a historic Seattle hotel, once the scene of an infamous murder.

Birdie thinks she knows exactly what mystery she wants to solve, but then she meets her new coworker, Daniel, who she actually met once before. After a very awkward encounter in the back seat of Daniel's car, had before either of them realised they'd be working together, Birdie tries to avoid Daniel at work, but Daniel knows the way to Birdie's heart. He has a mystery they can solve together, about why a famously reclusive author might be using the hotel for secret meetings. Birdie can't resist the chance to solve a real life mystery, but spending so much time with Daniel only leaves her with even more questions.

Birdie has a lot of growing up to do in the pages of Serious Moonlight and much of it very quickly becomes entangled in her relationship with Daniel, an amateur magician she meets one night in her favourite diner. Having, until this point, lived a very sheltered life on Bainbridge Island with only her grandparents and her eccentric artist godmother, Mona, for company, Birdie doesn't always know how to deal with her developing feelings for Daniel, least of all when he shares a difficult truth about his past with her. Birdie preoccupies herself with solving mysteries as a way to make sense of the world that took her mother from her, but Birdie's own feelings are often what she really needs to make sense of, which feels very appropriate for a novel about an eighteen year old girl trying to figure out who she is.

Although Birdie has her own idiosyncrasies, such as creating suspect profiles for everyone she meets, and although the mystery of the elusive author spotted in the hotel contains many twists and turns that wouldn't be out of place in a classic spy thriller, the real problems Birdie faces are extremely real. The pressure she feels not to repeat what her grandmother saw as her mother's mistakes, her reluctance to find out if her sleep problems might be linked to her grandfather's narcolepsy, the fear that her godmother, her one link to the life she had with her own mother as a child, might leave her, the trepidation she feels after sleeping with Danial, and later, after Daniel reveals a very painful secret about his own past. These are all extremely important problems facing a lot of people Birdie's age, and Bennett handles them sensitively and in a way that feels believable for Birdie.

Birdie does not always know how to react to the real mysteries life throws in her way, but she's eighteen, why should she? Growing up is messy and the heart of this novel lies in watching Birdie figure out what she wants her life to look like and how she can make it happen.

An ARC of this book was provided by the publisher via NetGalley for review. All opinions expressed are the reviewer's own.

No comments

Post a Comment

© Blogger's Bookshelf • Theme by Maira G.