Thursday, May 31, 2012

Keeping the Moon by Sarah Dessen

Even though I'm slowly/not so slowly buying/borrowing books in Japan, I still go back to the books I brought with me when I'm homesick. Like Sarah Dessen, I think out of all the authors I packed, I packed the most books from her (4 books). I previously reviewed The Truth About Forever, and now, here's another re-read: Keeping the Moon.

Keeping the Moon features Collie, who has never fit in. First, that was because she was fat and when she became thin, she developed a reputation she didn't deserve (school can be cruel). But one summer, her mom (who became Kiki Sparks and famous after losing weight) goes on tour and she's sent to her Aunt Mira for the summer. Mira is eccentric in ways too many to count but like in a Sarah Dessen novel, this is when she makes friends and finds out her own worth,

I say "like in a Sarah Dessen novel" because looking back, it fits her storyline pretty typically. But, while reading it, I never once felt a sense of deja vu. In fact, it was the complete opposite. I'll have to say that this is probably because of the writing and the characters. Colie, Morgan, Isabel and really everyone else is so well-portrayed that it made the story unique.

Especially Morgan and Isabel's friendship. They're alike (and at the same time opposite) that they remind me of my best friend and I. The way they talk, know each other so well, it sounds like what Rachel and I do. We don't talk about the same subjects, but the way we talk (or don't need to) is the same thing.

While I've never had Collie's problems (I'm sorry, but I don't think I was/am fat. And I was a goody-two-shoes), I can certainly identify with her loneliness. I think this is amplified all the more in Japan. While I have really awesome friends, there's a certain loneliness from being so far away from the friends left behind, and the language barrier doesn't help much. So in a way, reading about Collie fitting in by being who she is encouraged me that I will make friends eventually and there's no need to worry about fitting in.

Seriously, I think if you're going overseas/moving, you should bring Sarah Dessen along (I could make a list of authors to bring). If you have a friend moving, maybe you could give her this book to let her know you'll be thinking of her.

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