Moonglass (2011) is a beautiful coming-of-age novel for teens by Jessi Kirby. Sixteen-year-old Anna Ryan leaves behind the beach where she grew up… where her mother deliberately drowned herself… to a new California beach, full of old family history. Now living in her mother’s childhood vacation spot, on the very shore where her parents had first met, Anna has never felt closer – yet, still so removed – from her departed mother’s memory.
This is a sweet, gorgeous and touching novel. I swiped through each page, completely immersed in the story, transported entirely to that California beach where Anna makes new friends, discovers her mother’s past, and comes to terms with the shame and guilt associated with her mother’s suicide. The only aspect of the story I felt could’ve been more developed was Anna’s chaste romance with the lifeguard, Tyler; I didn’t feel much depth or chemistry to his character. But that’s okay, because the story is really about Anna and her dad, and her mother’s intriguing past. Anyone looking for a good beach read with heart and mystery will adore this gentle, page-turning debut.