Wednesday 5 March 2014

The Moon Sisters - Therese Walsh

© Bianca

288 pages
• release date - 04 March - 2014

4,25 Stars

A beautiful coming-of-age novel about two sisters on a journey to forgive their troubled mother, with a sheen of almost-magical realism that overlays a story about the love of a family, and especially between sisters.

Therese Walsh's poignant and mesmerizing novel is a moving tale of family, love, and the power of stories. After their mother's probable suicide, sisters Olivia and Jazz are figuring out how to move on with their lives. Jazz, logical and forward-thinking, decides to get a new job, but spirited, strong-willed Olivia, who can see sounds, taste words, and smell sights, is determined to travel to the remote setting of their mother's unfinished novel to say her final goodbyes and lay their mother's spirit to rest.

Though they see things very differently, Jazz is forced by her sense of duty to help Olivia reach her goal. Bitter and frustrated by the attention heaped on her sunny sister whose world is so unique, Jazz is even more upset when they run into trouble along the way and Olivia latches to a worldly train-hopper. Though Hobbs warns Olivia that he's a thief who shouldn't be trusted, he agrees to help with their journey. As they near their destination, the tension builds between the two sisters, each hiding something from the other, and they will finally be forced to face everything between them and decide what is really important


First line of the book:

The night before the worst day of my life, I dreamed the sun went dark and ice cracked every mirror in the house, but I didn’t take it for a warning.

This is the story of two sisters. Two very different sisters. Jazz is 22 and the only 'normal' person in her family. Olivia is 18 and a dreamer. She has 'Synesthesia' - she can see and smell and taste colors and sounds and people...

 After their mother died - everybody thinks it was suicide - Olivia wants to take her ashes to the Cranberry bogs to see the ghost-lights. That's where her mother's unfinished novel was set. But her mother never went to see the place. She rarely went out of the house at all.
Their dad and grandma 'force' Jazz to drive Olivia to the Bogs - Olivia is legally blind - she lost her central vision after staring at the sun too long after her mother died. Because to her - her mother had always smelled like sunshine.

 Even though it was the middle of winter, my nose filled with the scent of clothes right off the line on a summer day, like sunshine itselft. That's what seeing my Mama always did to me; it was my favorite part of having synesthesia.

When the car brakes down and Jazz is trying to get the mechanic to fix it - Olivia runs off and jumps on a train - where she meets Hobbs. A tattooed train-hopper who tells her she shouldn't trust him because he's a stranger on a train and a thief. But she convinces him to help her find the ghost-lights.

Jazz joins them in the end and go to find the ghost-lights.

Between the chapters - which are alternately written from both girls' POV - we read letters from their mom to their grandpa. Who disowned her when she got pregnant with Jazz.
And we also learn a lot about their life at home - life with their mom.

Will they eventually get to the Bogs and see the lights? Will there be a happy end?

 I'm not telling you, of course ☺
I don't want to spoil your reading pleasure ☺


I really enjoyed reading the book. It was interesting.

Not my kind of book unfortunately. I prefer those fast-reading simple romances where you don't have to think too much ☺
This was a lot deeper. Lots of pain and regret and love and hope and dreams.

Jazz tries to be there for her sister - because her mother would expect it of her. Olivia just wants to see the ghost lights - she wants so much more - but that was too deep for me probably ☺ I couldn't really force myself to think too much about the book. I read it - raced through some parts I have to admit. And once I was finished - that was it.
BUT - I also have to admit that I cried a bit ☺

It's a really wonderfully written novel about 2 girls that need some kind of closure - because their mother was a very sad and depressed woman...
After her death the family kind of fell apart - Dad started drinking - Olivia stared into the sun and is halfblind now. And I think this little trip is helping those 2 sisters to heal and to find themselves and each other again.




 Therese's debut novel, The Last Will of Moira Leahy, was published in 2009 by Shaye Areheart books (Random House). Her second novel, The Moon Sisters, will be published by Crown (Penguin Random House) in March 2014.

Therese is the co-founder of Writer Unboxed, a blog for writers about the craft and business of genre fiction. Before turning to fiction, she was a researcher and writer for Prevention magazine, and then a freelance writer. She’s had hundreds of articles on nutrition and fitness published in consumer magazines and online.

She has a master's degree in psychology.

Aside from writing, Therese’s favorite things include music, art, crab legs, Whose Line is it Anyway?, dark chocolate, photography, unique movies and novels, people watching, strong Irish tea, and spending time with her husband, two kids and their bouncy Jack Russell.