Tuesday, June 16, 2015

5 stars: Between Us and the Moon by Rebecca Maizel

"Ever since Sarah was born, she’s lived in the shadow of her beautiful older sister, Scarlett. But this summer on Cape Cod, she’s determined to finally grow up. Then she meets gorgeous college boy Andrew. He sees her as the girl she wants to be. A girl who’s older than she is. A girl like Scarlett.

Before she knows what’s happened, one little lie has transformed into something real. And by the end of August, she might have to choose between falling in love, and finding herself.

Fans of Jenny Han and Stephanie Perkins are destined to fall for this story about how life and love are impossible to predict."

Expected publication: June 30, 2015 by Harper Teen. I received a digital ARC of this story.

There are some really good books that I would have completely missed had it not been for my friend Sarah. She gave this one five stars on Goodreads, and I know she has good taste. I completely skipped over this book on Edelweiss because of the cover, I think. I'm not normally drawn to realistic romances with romantic covers. Honestly, if I hadn't read the summary on Edelweiss after seeing Sarah's rating, I may not have read it at all. I'm so glad Sarah and I are friends, because this is a book I would hate to have missed out on.

What the other summary included is that the teenage protagonist Sarah goes on vacation and lies to a man she meets, and says that she is 18. Now that is what hooked me, because who didn't do that as a teen? There are fun directions for that to go, and not many ever happen in real life. 

Maizel had a lot of fun with this story line and tried to make most things you wanted to see happen, happen. I kept gasping and saying "oh no!" or "uh oh!" while reading this, and my husband kept wanting to know what was going on with me. You'll be on the edge of your seat, and you will experience second-hand embarrassment from time to time. 

As someone who loves a flawed male lead, I have to say that Andrew is pretty much perfect. One problem with perfect leading men is that they can be boring, which is why there are few, but Andrew isn't boring, and that could also be due to his past, which is a bit tragic. 

I did have a couple small issues with the book, but I want to be clear that I read an advance reader's copy, so my issues may not be in the final edit. I felt like there needed to be smoother transitions between many scenes, and whenever the scenery changed. I kept getting confused and had to reread, because I couldn't tell if I completely missed a transition. Like how did the characters suddenly get to this place? Wait, it's suddenly a different hour? Something that irked me is that Sarah is taller and more filled-out than her sister, but they wear the same clothing size, "Even though she's skinny, I'm tall, so we happen to wear a similar size." No, you don't! Now if she was tall and skinny, and you were short and rounder, then maybe you would wear a similar size. 

I have not given a book a five out of five star rating since 2013, so congratulations Between Us and the Moon! This was a beautiful coming of age story filled with depth. I loved every moment of Sarah's journey.