April 18, 2012

Review: Moonstone, by Marilee Brothers

Author: Marilee Brothers
Title: Moonstone
Series: Unbidden Magic (#1)
ISBN: 9780980245349
Publisher: Bell Bridge Books (August 1st 2008)
Disclaimer: Copy received for review purposes.

Buy your copy: Kindle | Paperback

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

MOONSTONE A Fictionwise Fantasy bestseller Young Adult A sickly mom. A tiny house trailer. High school bullies and snarky drama queens. Bad-guy dudes with charming smiles. Allie has problems. And then there's that whole thing about fulfilling a magical prophecy and saving the world from evil. Geez. Welcome to the sad, funny, sometimes-scary world of fifteen-year-old Allie Emerson, who's struggling to keep her and her mom's act together in the small-town world of Peacock Flats, Washington. An electrical zap from a TV antenna sets off Allie's weird psychic powers. The next thing she knows she's being visited by a hippy-dippy guardian angel, and then her mysterious neighbor, the town "witch," gives her an incredible moonstone pendant that has powers only a good-hearted "Star Seeker" is meant to command. "Who, me?" is Allie's first reaction. But as sinister events begin to unfold, Allie realizes she's got a destiny to live up to. If she can just survive everyday life, in the meantime. GoodReads’ blurb

Note: I’ve got this one from the publisher via NetGalley, in a special reviewer pack with the whole series. This review is just about the first book, Moonstone.

If I had to describe Moonstone with one word, I’d use “okay”. Which is good, because it does its job of entertaining the reader, but is also bad because it means there were no remarkable things to write about.

The storyline was entertaining, but it felt slightly jumpy at times-no, that’s not quite right. The relationships felt jumpy. Some characters popped in and out of the plot, and I had a hard time with that because it made difficult to tell apart the sidekicks and the love interest at first.

As a rule, the characters were amusing and entertaining, but not memorable. Allie had some really good moments, and her reactions to some situations are realistic – I think she was the best part of the novel. Even if she takes a bit long to get her mission into her head.

I think that Moonstone is aimed to a younger YA audience – readers around 12, say? – and that it’s important to take that into account. Probably that’s the reason it didn’t grip me – it was a bit juvenile, which is something a lot of YA today seems to have forgotten. But at the same time, there wasn’t anything that I could find fault with. That’s why I said it was an okay book... If it’s for a kid, it might be a good choice. If not, I’d go check out some of the other titles out there.


  1. I started this series and haven't finished it because it's so long for just one sitting or one file. I guess it's going to stay in the back burner for a while.

    1. Agreed. I think the compilation isn't doing it many favours... It kind of overwhelmed me! I'll get back to the rest of the series eventually, I guess, but I need to take it one book at a time!

  2. Thanks for taking the time to read and review my book. You're right. It's for younger readers.

    1. Hi, Marilee! Thanks for dropping by!

      I think that we've come across so many YA titles that translate into adult fanbases that sometimes we forget their target group... That's something Moonstone does right, focusing on the real young readers.

  3. I saw this pack offered on Netgalley and I decided not to request it simply because I have too many review copies and very little time. BUT I was very intrigued by the description and I thought I'd eventually get a copy for myself.
    The fact that it aims for a younger audience makes me less than sure that this is a right book for me. Sorry you didn't find it entirely satisfying, Ron, but wonderful review as always.

    1. I admire you. I probably shouldn't have requested, since I do have a towering pile already, but the whole concept just called to me. To be honest, Maja, I think this is one of those YA titles that doesn't translate well to us adult folks - especially when we get picky about solid systems and such. Still, I've to say that the main character's voice was pretty funny and I'd definitely have been gripped if it had been a bit... less magical, more character-driven? I -still- don't know how to explain it.

      Thanks so much for the comment, Maja!

  4. Hey, Ron! Thanks for the informative review! This does seem like something I might enjoy reading, even though I'm not one of those "younger readers"...lol. The thing is, I immediately felt attracted to this cover! I love that huge, myserious-looking moon in the night sky. So, even though you say it's only okay, I think I'll give it a try.

    Thanks again!! : )

    Maria @ http://anightsdreamofbooks.blogspot.com/

    1. It's a good read! It was fun, the main character was entertaining... I just missed a bit more purpose in the cast, and a tighter explanation (which is why I said the younger readers part). I think I was also overwhelmed because I had all three books in one file, even though I tried not to let it color the review...