THE GIRL WHO CHASED THE MOON
SARAH ADDISON ALLEN
March 16, 2010
Fiction / Contemporary
Rating: 4 Cups
Like Alice falling into the rabbit hole, Emily Benedict finds herself in the strangely confusing world known as Mullaby, North Carolina. Her mother’s death left her with only one relative, and her grandfather, Vance, has been kind enough to let a teenage girl he has never met come to live with him.
When Julia Winterson left Mullaby all those years ago, it was a forced move to a reform school, but staying away was probably the only thing that really saved her life. Her father’s inability to share his affection with her, thanks to his new wife, led a teenaged Julia on a path of self-destruction that became increasingly dangerous.
Grandpa Vance is not exactly what Emily was expecting, or maybe way more than she was expecting, being that the man is over eight feet tall and he is only the first of some very strange things around Mullaby. In the eyes of everyone in town, Emily can see the derision that these people feel towards her, but learning that her mother is the cause is almost unbearably hard to accept. Julia tries to befriend the young girl living with Vance, but her own past is getting harder and harder to ignore. The man who lit up her life and then summarily blew it apart wants to make amends, but Julia wants only one thing, and that is to get back to her real life and get the heck out of Mullaby for good.
If you have ever gone to a high school reunion or live in the same town as your relatives, you will know exactly how Julia and Emily are feeling. Some things you can never live down, and while that gives you a sense of roots or belonging, it can also be oppressive and stifling. There is an indefinable connection to the characters that so many authors are unable to achieve, but Sarah Allen’s mastery of this skill drops you right into their hearts and minds. Julia and Emily both crave acceptance and a place to call home, but it is their tremendous inner strength and compassion that makes the reader really feel part of their world.
Reviewer for Coffee Time Romance & More