I wish I had a way to describe how much I loved this book. I don't give out very many five stars, so I kept asking myself, "Is this really a five-star book?" And finally I decided that yes, it was, for these reasons:
The writing style immediately drew me in. There are
many books out there with two or more stories intertwined...giving
glimpses of the past while figuring things out in the present. But, to
date, I think Walk Two Moons does it in the most seamless way I've ever
read. Instead of it being like, "Chapter 24: Present," "Chapter
25:Past," it just feels like you're floating between the two stories. As
Salamanca tells Phoebe's story, it reminds her of memories from her own
life. She comes to terms with events in her past because of what she
learned from Phoebe. In that way, I guess it's really three stories:
Phoebe's, Sal's past (unconnected to her involvement with Phoebe), and
Sal's present. All details are important, but Sal just gives little
pieces here and there. She leaves one thread hanging while tying off one
she left awhile back. For example, at one mid-point, you find out that
Sal's mother was pregnant, but in the present day story Sal doesn't have
a sibling, so that little fact kept teasing the back of my brain: when
is she going to explain about her mom's pregnancy? Unanswered questions
like that really kept the story moving.
The characters were
great. One of my favorites was Phoebe Winterbottom, Sal's best friend. I
kind of have a pet peeve with books where the main character has a best
friend just to have a best friend. That's not the case with Phoebe
Winterbottom. In part, I think that's because she gets her own story,
but it's also because she's not completely likeable. She's a bit rude,
and she and Sal don't really even seem like they have the same
personality type. Instead of just being the best friend who is helping
Sal, she has her own problems and struggles, and Sal really doesn't even
like her sometimes. It was a very real friendship.
itself was so thought-provoking. I kept wishing I was reading it for
book group so I could discuss it with someone. Maybe I'll have to
recommend it for next month. Sal's and Phoebe's mothers were especially
intriguing to me...
I listened to this book, so maybe I shouldn't
have given it five stars until I know whether or not it would pass the
paper test as well. I know that listening to a book can be a completely
different experience than reading it, and sometimes it really can make
or break a book. I hope it will be just as good in my hands as in my
ears. Nevertheless, I stayed with the five stars because I know it WILL
be a book I will reread; and it WILL also be a book I will own someday.
And those are two tests that say "five stars" to me.
I wrote this review before creating this blog.