Your Late to the Party Quarter’s Worth
The Girl Who Drank The Moon
Imagine living in a village unknown to outsiders and unknowing of the world beyond the town walls.
Once a year the community elder council holds a somber procession through town ending in the removal of the village’s youngest child from their family.
The child is left in a sycamore grove in the woods outside the town walls doomed to be the village’s annual sacrifice to the witch of the woods. . .
Only the witch in the story isn’t a bad one. She’s a good and caring witch.
In fact, the witch believes she’s rescuing the abandoned infants before they freeze to death or are eaten by hungry forest animals.
Swiftly, the witch brings each child to far-off ‘free cities’ where they are raised by caring and loving foster families and communities.
In order to get the sacrificed children to their new homes she has to provide them sustenance for the journey. The witch does so by feeding each starlight.
This year however, the witch becomes distracted and accidentally feeds the baby girl moonlight. And feeding an infant moonlight has strange and magical consequences. . .
This is just the opening chapters of Kelly Barnhill‘s Newberry Award winning young adult novel, The Girl Who Drank The Moon.
I bought the book for my kid from their school book fair back when there were such things. On and off for about a year we picked the book up and I read a few chapters to them out loud.
Maybe it was because of the periods of time between our reading sessions, but the book took a little to get ramped up. After it did however. It ended up being an incredible and imaginative story packed in a very good book.
If you couldn’t tell from this reviews opening paragraphs, The Girl Who Drank The Moon has enough magic for any older child/young adult as well as any full-grown geeks/nerds/big-kids. The book has dragons, poet swamp monsters, origami birds that come to life and attack if provoked, and plenty of mystical power and artifacts.
What was extremely cool about how Barnhill pulled it all off was that she refrained from becoming overly descriptive. She did an expert job of balancing providing enough detail to get readers immersed in the story and still allowing their minds to paint the picture for themselves.
Finally, the ending was so touching it had me bawling. I had to hand the book over to my progeny so they could read the final chapters. I couldn’t see through the water welling up in my eyes and I couldn’t speak without becoming choked up.
Sharing The Girl Who Drank The Moon by Kelly Barnhill with my child and now with all the 5280 Geek readers has been an absolute pleasure.
It wasn’t the best book I’ve ever read, but it was very good and worth reading at least once. I’ll definitely check out more of Barnhill’s offerings as each description sounds darker and stranger than the last.
If you’ve already read the book I’d love to hear your thoughts. Please use the comments button below.
Thanks for popping in for another Late to the Party Quarter’s Worth. Be sure to check back and see what book, movie, or music I be tardily reviewing next. Until then, stay geeky.
Book review by John Andreula