"Strawberry Moon" by Joy M. Lilley

Strawberry Moon by [Joy M. Lilley]

DESCRIPTION AS ON AMAZON:

The Patterson family leaves the U.K. to begin a new life in France. St Severin, in the Dordogne, provides the backdrop for the family's new home and all of the life-changing obstacles they are about to encounter. Maisie, who is almost seventeen, narrates this unpredictable story. Maisie struggles as she experiences the changes of coming of age, the pain of loss, and the rollercoaster ride of competing love interests. Maisie's older brother, Dan, rebels over the move and frequently threatens to return to England when his studies are over. Dan starts an affair with a married French woman. After a few months in France, he goes missing which begins to unravel the family. What starts as an exciting move becomes more difficult with each passing chapter. Maisie is left navigating this complicated new world, all while trying to plan the rest of her adult life.



I liked the cover of the book. It's enticing. I did find the smallest piece of the story related to the cover and title- Maisie described the moon when tragedy struck her family. I felt the book dragged on much longer than necessary, and even though there were parts that captured my interest for a minute, and I thought, "here we go; something is going to happen," nothing came of it. No questions were answered, and no resolutions evolved. I didn't care for Maisie or her constant fizzling and straying affections. Her mother's addiction/mental illness and her belief that she'd committed murder led to a confession, a possibly great angle that ended before it began. Was Gange the man Maisie had seen on the canal? Was Maisie's 'accident' really an accident, and if it wasn't, did someone attack her to end her questions about the murder? Why was Ralph hinted at as an alternate suspect? Why was Franz injected into the story buzzing around at the end with no real explanation? There were too many very long, slow passages that forced me to step away from the book. Perhaps the author has a sequel planned that will answer some questions, but I felt dragged in circles without any satisfaction. It is in dire need of editing and proofreading.

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