Friday, April 30, 2010

No Moon by Irene N. Watts

Fourteen-year-old Louisa Gardener becomes nursemaid to the young daughters of a wealthy titled family living in London, England, in 1912. Despite the bullying of Nanny Makintosh, for whom she is an extra pair of hands, Louisa loves her work. Haunted by memories of the drowning of her two-year-old brother on a trip to the seaside when she was but five years old, Louisa has been able to suppress her nightmares and deep-rooted feat of the ocean. But they soon come flooding back when the family decides to sail to New York aboard the Titanic. If Louisa refuses to go, she will be dismissed and never get beyond the working-class life she has escaped from. Will Louisa be able to overcome her fears and embark on a voyage that changes history forever? Her fateful choice makes No Moon a gripping, unforgettable story.
I'll be honest with you, don't like Titanic stories; never have and probably never will. They scare me. I remember watching a documentary on TV about what researchers uncovered when they finally found the Titanic 73 years later after it sank... ballroom floors covered in moss, a once elegant staircase in shambles, and–the eeriest image of all: a pair of shoes firmly planted on the ocean floor, as if someone just stepped out of them. Every time someone suggests I watch Titanic, I shake my head no. Too sad, I say. 
When I first started reading No Moon I expected the entire book (which is only 232 pages long) to take place aboard the RMS Titanic. Instead, more than half of the book took place on land with barely a quarter of the story dealing with the tragic event of April 14, 1912. I really liked Louisa's voice; she kept me pulled into the story, no matter if it was going a bit slow or not. No Moon was an excellent historical piece not only with capturing a perspective on the Titanic, but with the Victorian and pre-World War I era as well. Some people might not find "downstairs life" (i.e. servant life) enticing, but I do. Especially since you may have never realized that running giant household could take so many different jobs and people! I have never read any of Watt's books until now, but I am familiar with some of her other titles: Remember Me, Finding Sophie, Goodbye-Marianne, and Clay Man. I'm glad I got the chance to read No Moon–it was a great story.
Recommendation: Not a fan of Titanic stories? Me neither, but that didn't stop me from enjoying No Moon! I thought it was a fantastic historical fiction book; read it to celebrate the Titanic's 98th birthday. Recommend to teens ages 12+.
This Book is For: Teens who enjoy historical fiction set in the Victorian Era and readers who like short books.
Content: None (G)

The Last Straw: "And suppose there is no moon?"
                        "No moon? There is always a moon." (pg. 122)

|Pages: 232|Year Published: April 2010|Publisher: Tundra|
|Genre: Historical fiction, 1900s, Victoria Era, WWI, coming of age|
|Age Group: YA, ages 12+|Content: None (G)|
|Enjoyed It: 4/5|Content Rating: 5/5|Cover: 5/5|
|Overall: 5/5|


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