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Summary

Longlisted for the 2016 National Book Award for Young People's Literature.

Anna-Marie McLemore's debut novel, The Weight of Feathers, was greeted with rave reviews, a YALSA Morris Award nomination, and spots on multiple "best YA novels" lists. Now McLemore delivers a second stunning and utterly romantic novel, again tinged with magic.

To everyone who knows them, best friends Miel and Sam are as strange as they are inseparable. Roses grow out of Miel's wrist, and rumors say that she spilled out of a water tower when she was five. Sam is known for the moons he paints and hangs in the trees and for how little anyone knows about his life before he and his mother moved to town.

But as odd as everyone considers Miel and Sam, even they stay away from the Bonner girls, four beautiful sisters rumored to be witches. Now they want the roses that grow from Miel's skin, convinced that their scent can make anyone fall in love. And they're willing to use every secret Miel has fought to protect to make sure she gives them up.

Atmospheric, dynamic, and packed with gorgeous prose, When the Moon Was Ours is another winner from this talented author.

©2016 Anna-Marie McLemore (P)2016 Audible, Inc.

What members say

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Fairytale like story

The narrators did a good job. The writing is beautiful and lyrical, but it's a book that probably needs you to take the time to dissect the metaphors, which is fine when reading but not a style I enjoyed listening to personally.

This book has heavy themes of identity and gender. I can't speak for the representation of this. I think some of this is somewhat own voices and others parts are not. I'm not sure. this is a book where own voices reveiwers would be valuable.

I thought the story was long winded and focused more on whimsy than plot. If I had liked the characters more I may have enjoyed the book as a whole better, but the fairy tale tone to the book set a distance between me and the story/characters.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 02-07-17

Very satisfying.

This is one of those YA novels that transcends its genre. Magical Realism with sympathetic characters and a bit of mystery. Tones of Virgin Suicides. Don't hesitate to read this lovely story!

9 of 10 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Bharune
  • 13-10-17

Difficult to Decide...

McLemore's prose is brilliant, and it's just the kind of abstract writing that I absolutely love to read. That being said, in my opinion she manages to take her talent for poetic wordplay and pile it on so thick and so often, it becomes redundant and weighs down the story. It's like a 3-tiered chocolate cake with chocolate filling and chocolate icing and sprinkles on top -- heavenly for the first bite but quickly overwhelming. I love her writing, but I just got so bored listening to paragraph after paragraph describing the redness of the Bonner girls' hair that I found myself desperate for something tangible to happen.

In the end, I couldn't wait to be finished with it. It has a lovely cadence, though, and I like to put it on when I'm having trouble falling asleep.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • yns 025
  • 17-07-17

Lovely

A beautiful story, reflective of the authors' life experience and that of her husband. Surreal and poetic.

I loved When the Moon Was Ours because it was both complex and simplistic. It had elements of magic and mystery, while still feeling down to earth and homey. I felt like I was at home, in the kitchen, listening to my grandmother tell a story passed down from generation to generation.

I did not understand when I started this book that two of the central characters were transgender. Following their storylines, and listening to their emotions and struggles and fears; it was just a beautiful story.

The cultural influences of both Latinx and Middle Eastern cultures was interesting and creative. To have the legends of La llorona and the cultural concept of Bacha Posh woven into the story just made it all the better.

Raviv Ullman and Bailey Carr were both phenomonal narrators. They elements they added to the surrealism of the book were beautiful. I loved it.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • joiabean
  • 04-07-17

I loved this story!

What great imagery and characters. I loved having an inside view of Miele and Samir as they grew into who they were. Amazing.

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • MHaluptzok
  • 28-06-17

Controversial

This story was crafted very beautifully with mixtures of both Spanish and Iranian cultures and their stories and myths sprinked throughout the book. The author uses many sensory descriptions like color, scent, and taste to help the reader connect to the characters in a more personal way. The way the book is written is beautiful, however it does explore the controversial topic of gender and transgender issues. For those who are heavily leaning towards one side or the other, this book may introduce ideas and feelings about transgenderism that push against the traditional ideologies of gender and gender roles. The voice actors do a great job, and keep the reader engaged even to the very end of the book.

9 of 11 people found this review helpful

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  • Carla
  • 02-12-17

What?!

What? What?!! I like strange. I like different and make-believe. I like flawed characters. And though there are many strange, flawed characters in this book I really didn't like it much. The story leaves strange almost immediately and goes to crazy weird. I thought about quitting it several times but kept hoping for... something. If life's to short to waste on bad books I may have just wasted 8 hours of my life.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 18-08-17

Mixed performance. Nice love story but disjointed

The woman was a great reader but didn't like the man's narration emphasis. The story itself was disjointed and a bit jagged. I think the fantasy mystical aspects distracted from what could have been a moving coming if age and love story. There was repetition that was annoying. the love hate relationship between Miel and the sisters didn't make sense. Can't recommend it.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Diane M. Tilgner
  • 11-07-17

Acceptance ...

Acceptance of whoever we are is necessary to be fully oneself in the world.
This tale tells about it in honest fiction.
I loved this book.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Sunshine
  • 06-07-17

Beautiful

This book was written like a beautiful poem. I loved it! Thank you for this beautiful story.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Jeanne Raines
  • 12-11-17

Exquisite

This book is phenomenal.
The magic story is okay and not particularly coherent, I thought, but the transgender story and relationship were just simply exquisite, I thought. You should, absolutely, read it.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful