Title: A Creature of Moonlight
Author: Rebecca Hahn
Genre: YA Fantasy
Publication Date: May 6, 2014
Format: Hardcover, 224 Pages
ISBN-10: 054410935X (HMH)
ISBN-13: 978-0544109353 (HMH)
Reviewed by: Kaitlin
As the only heir to the throne, Marni should have been surrounded by wealth and privilege, not living in exile—but now the time has come when she must choose between claiming her birthright as princess of a realm whose king wants her dead, and life with the father she has never known: a wild dragon who is sending his magical woods to capture her.
Fans of Bitterblue and Seraphina will be captured by a Creature of Moonlight, with its richly layered storytelling and the powerful choices its strong heroine must make.
Quick & Dirty: Hauntingly beautiful, raw, and powerful, this story stays with you even after you turn the last page. I can’t stress enough how gorgeous and eerie this novel is.
Opening Sentence: All summer long the villagers have been talking of the woods.
This connected to me on an emotional level, and I don’t remember the last time I left a story with such pleasant feelings. Delirium? Twilight? Harry Potter? Wow, just wow. A Creature of Moonlight is about Marni, a princess who lives with the King in a flower selling hut a little ways from a village. Gramps (the King) gave up his place at the throne in order to take care of Marni and spare her life, because her uncle was going to kill her, right after he killed her mother. She isn’t fully human, either. Her mom, just like other girls, was lured by the magical presence of the woods, except unlike the rest she came back, pregnant. And only strange, mystical creatures live in the woods . . . the most strange and mystical of all, the rumored dragon. Marni isn’t immune to the trees and creatures and magic, but her fragile life is about to be uprooted much like the flowers she sells, and it is time for her to fight to right herself again.
The style of writing is like nothing I’ve heard before. It’s simple, and yet intricate. It looks at the deeper meanings of things that are yet to be understood, and grasps at every detail in colorful storytelling. Marni is the most introspective character I have ever known, other than Lena of Delirium, and that’s saying a lot. I adore her and her personality, strengths and weaknesses, mistakes and emotions. She is, quite bluntly, a fabulous character.
Lord Edgar is the supposed love interest, cocky, confident, and charming. He had me wondering whether they’d end up together or not, because for all the pros about him, there were signs that they could end up apart. I kept changing my mind about what would happen, and in the end, I was surprised (and I’m not telling you how, you’ll have to read and find out)!
The lure of the woods was ever there. It was always a ghostly pull in Marni’s head, and I felt myself actually wanting to follow it. If I could rate top 10 settings, along with Hogwarts, there would be the woods. If you’ve read Splintered and loved Wonderland, don’t deny yourself the pleasure of reading this book. It’s almost physically painful to read and want to know how everything ends up, and I was tempted quite a few times to skip ahead, but I am an honorable reader and stayed true to the course of the chapters.
Young or old, I think anyone will love this. Period. It was amazing to me; it will be amazing to you. A Creature of Moonlight has my highest recommendations, and I swear to you that after reading you will have no regret that you did so! Sometimes when reading this I physically smiled, or laughed, or covered my mouth with my hands and gasped, and I haven’t felt this close to a book in a while. It sounds cheesy, but a real reader will know the feeling when you find a book that will grow to be a favorite. Don’t wait any longer than necessary to pick this up!
It’s our choices. It’s our changing, every day, into creatures who might do something completely different from the day before. It’s our stupid stubbornness and our constant unpredictability, and the irrational way we have of holding on to our love, our anger, our hate, letting them grow within us until they’re a part of us as sure a s our hands and feet, as sure as the laughter that catches on our breath, the moonlit tears in our eyes.
It’s magic too, in a way.
FTC Advisory: HMH Books for Young Readers provided me with a copy of A Creature of Moonlight. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.
You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.