by Marilee Brothers, paranormal (2008)
Bell Bridge Books, $14.95, ISBN 978-0-9802453-4-9
Moonstone is a young adult fantasy story. Don't worry too much about whether this book has underage young women giving birth in a scene that would make the Queen Alien from those movies proud. This one is a fun and well-written story that won't corrupt the kids with too many inappropriate ideas. I think. There are mentions of weed and some references to sex, but these are just mild references rather than racy and explicit blow-by-blow descriptions.
Alfrieda "Allie" Emerson believes that she is just like every fifteen-year old out there. Stuck in Peacock Flats, Washington, and helping around with the farm, she is infatuated with the hot step-cousin of hers. Okay, so the local old kook tells her that she has "the Gift" and her relationship with her mother could be better, but hey, nobody is perfect. A small accident with the TV antenna however changes everything. When she starts seeing a weed-smoking guardian that is visible only to her and she starts getting abilities like telekinesis, that is only the beginning of Allie's great adventure. Allie turns out to be a Special Young Lady who is destined to save the world, whether she likes it or not. Now all she needs to do is to learn from her dotty mentors how to use her powers and what her role in the greater scheme of things is. Still, getting to know better the baddest of all the bad boys in high school may provide some consolation to the changes that Allie is experiencing at the moment.
Allie is a fun protagonist. She's not a blatant Mary Sue creature, which is a good thing, instead she is funny and smart. While the story has plenty of familiar tropes, the author has included plenty of twists to keep things interesting and not too predictable. I also like how this story focuses more on Allie rather than Allie's love life. Perhaps this may change in future books in this series, but for now I like that the story is not bogged down by silly love triangles like most stories of this kind.
One thing though, while for the most part the language used feels "in" and "now" - don't quote me, though, I catch up with my "in" speak through TV shows and MTV so I could be wrong - but there are some occasional phrases that show up in conversations here that seem "hip" only if we are still living in the 1970s. Some young kids reading this may go, "Eeeuw!" the same way they would react when they see an adult trying very hard to be one of them.
All in all, though, Moonstone is an enjoyable read with a fun heroine in the lead.
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