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The Almost Moon
by Alice Sebold | Literature & Fiction
Registered by katrinat of Leigh-on-Sea, Essex United Kingdom on Friday, February 15, 2008
Average 7 star rating by BookCrossing Members 

status (set by Rrrcaron): travelling


16 journalers for this copy...

Journal Entry 1 by katrinat from Leigh-on-Sea, Essex United Kingdom on Friday, February 15, 2008

8 out of 10

A read this just before Christmas and found it a very strange book, certainly not what I expected from the author of the Lovely Bones.
The characters were well thought out and the story well planned. Be warned the first few chapters arev quite harrowing but after that it gets to easier reading. 


Journal Entry 2 by katrinat from Leigh-on-Sea, Essex United Kingdom on Monday, February 18, 2008

This book has not been rated.

the order at the moment:
Inver (eu postage)
midlifecrisis (eu only)
bestfriends. (belgium, post europe)
okyrhoe (in Athens, post INTL
BigBird2002. (usa only) (skipped)
ladybug74 (us, post us) (on its way here)
acountkel (us, will post usa or canada pref)
lauraloo29.(canada, anywhere but canada)---its on its way here---


 


Journal Entry 3 by katrinat from Leigh-on-Sea, Essex United Kingdom on Sunday, March 02, 2008

This book has not been rated.

Sent out to Inver 


Journal Entry 4 by Inver from Aberdeen, Scotland United Kingdom on Tuesday, March 04, 2008

This book has not been rated.

Was that the letter box....yes it was! Thanks for sending on. Have one more bookring before this but will try to get to it as soon as I can.

15/3/08 About half way through. 


Journal Entry 5 by Inver from Aberdeen, Scotland United Kingdom on Sunday, March 16, 2008

7 out of 10

Harrowing read at times, but what is about Alice Sebold and her writing that you just have to get to the end, despite not necessarily liking the book. I did find it jumped about a bit with the past a present storyline, but was necessary for the plot to understand the characters and their past. Without giving too much away I found the ending a bit disappointing. I preferred Lovely Bones to this one, but thank you for allowing me to take part in the ring. Contacting next in line for address.
*********************************************
17/3/08 - posting to 'midlifecrisis' on next step of its journey. 


Journal Entry 6 by Midlifecrisis from St. Austell, Cornwall United Kingdom on Wednesday, March 19, 2008

This book has not been rated.

The book arrived today - thank you. I only have one to read before I can get started. 


Journal Entry 7 by Midlifecrisis from St. Austell, Cornwall United Kingdom on Friday, March 21, 2008

10 out of 10

I thought this was a brilliant book, though I did find the Hamish situation a little unconvincing. However, the picture of Helen's complex relationships with her parents and, indeed, between the parents themselves, was totally gripping. I have read Lucky, which I thought was equally good, and will now be on the lookout for the Lovely Bones. Thank you so much for giving me the opportunity to read this. I will get it on its way as soon as I can after the Easter holiday. 


Journal Entry 8 by Midlifecrisis from St. Austell, Cornwall United Kingdom on Wednesday, March 26, 2008

This book has not been rated.

Being posted to bestfriends today. 


Journal Entry 9 by bestfriends from - Ergens in de provincie, Gelderland Netherlands on Monday, March 31, 2008

This book has not been rated.

In my mailbox today.

Good timing. I just finished reading another (ray) book yesterday. Although I already started something else, I can still put that one on hold, now that this arrived.

I liked "Lovely Bones" and "Lucky", so I'm looking forward to it. Up next. 


Journal Entry 10 by bestfriends from - Ergens in de provincie, Gelderland Netherlands on Thursday, April 03, 2008

8 out of 10

This is a very.....unusual novel.

It's not an enjoyable read, which makes it all the more remarkable that Alice Sebold had the nerve to unfold this dark story and present characters, that are not very likable. I find it very courageous of her that, obviously, she did not have in mind to "please" her audience and write another bestseller after the succes of her debut novel "The Lovely Bones". Life is not always warm and happy. She has the nerve to reveal the darker sites of human beings. I was impressed!

Thanks for sharing! I will send it to the next on the list as soon as I have an address.



April 4: Sent to Athens. Enjoy.
 


Journal Entry 11 by okyrhoe from Athens, Attica Greece on Friday, April 11, 2008

This book has not been rated.

Arrived in my p.o.box today. Thanks katrinat for adding me to the ring, and bestfriends for posting it to me!

Note: I will be on vacation end April-beginning May (for the 3rd Greek BookCrossing Convention "The Mazoksi") so my reading will be slowing down a bit. Hope it's o.k. 


Journal Entry 12 by okyrhoe from Athens, Attica Greece on Wednesday, May 28, 2008

This book has not been rated.

After being impressed by The Lovely Bones and Lucky I was disappointed by this novel. I couldn’t help but compare it to another book I’d just finished, Rachel Cusk’s Arlington Park.
Although the plot lines of these books dont' have anything in common, they share the same narrative time frame: The events and thought processes of the characters within the duration of a single day. (Incidentally both novels also refer directly or indirectly to Virginia Woolf.) But the prose style of the two couldn’t be more dissimilar, and in retrospect I can’t help admiring Cusk’s rich and textured writing all the more now.
Granted, Sebold is writing in the first person, and that by definition is limiting, in that it is Helen who is speaking to us. But this is exactly what makes the novel unconvincing.
Helen’s narration is so controlled, rational and orderly that there is no way the reader can mistake her for a truly troubled or deranged person. Rather than being overcome by the extraordinary events of those 24hours, Helen seems more concerned about making everything crystal clear to the reader. There is no narrative agitation, no confusion, no contradiction, and therefore no‘detective work’ for the reader to perform.
A case in point: When Helen is sitting for the drawing class, she says, "Now I felt the menacing bones of this rabbit behind me..." But the reader doesn’t sense any real paranoia on Helen’s part, as she has just previously explained in detail what exactly this rabbit is, where it came from, when it happened, etc.
Also, in the last moments of the day, when Helen’s mind is flitting between images of serial killers, and thoughts of artists/writers made famous by their dramatic suicides, she still has the presence of mind to give us a description of the variations in the landscape as she drives from Natalie’s/Hamish’s house to her mother’s neighborhood. This passage in Chapter 15, especially the focused description of one resident’s cinderblock wall is the most problematic moment of all in Sebold’s novel. Here Helen is no longer the agent in her own unfolding story; she is the voice reciting the narrative, and her tone becomes philosophical: "I had begun to think of him as a homunculus who contained within him all the fears of modern man. There were no pictures of him because he looked like all of us. His fear made him into a phantom who changed shape behind his walls..."
Sebold is getting carried away here; it’s no longer Helen who is speaking to us. The cinderblock wall in this urban landscape assumes a literary significance similar to that of the emblematic billboard "eyes of Doctor T.J. Eckleburg" in The Great Gatsby. This wall stands for Helen’s clothes as she disrobes for the art class, for her father’s plywood figurines, for her mother’s towels & blankets that were used to shield her as she ventured out of the house, and of course the prison walls Helen is running away from. It’s a nice literary flourish on Sebold’s part, wrapping up all the themes and images into a single metaphor, but thoroughly unconvincing if we are to take Helen’s frame of mind for what it is supposed to be at that particular moment.

The Almost Moon also begs a comparison with Elfriede Jelinek’s The Piano Teacher: The plot line (female protagonist obsessed with her mother & also with art, seduces a young man) as well as theme (critique of contemporary family structures & culture). 


Journal Entry 13 by ladybug74 from Dothan, Alabama USA on Thursday, June 05, 2008

This book has not been rated.

Received this bookring book today in the mail. The other book I was reading at the time was really starting to drag, so I've already started this one. I'm a couple of chapters into it and it seems like I am really going to enjoy this one. Thanks to katrinat for sharing and thanks to okyrhoe for mailing it to the U.S.

 


Journal Entry 14 by ladybug74 from Dothan, Alabama USA on Tuesday, June 10, 2008

8 out of 10

I enjoyed this book! Thanks again to katrinat for sharing it!

I thought it was horrible that the main character killed her mother, despite everything that she had put her through. I found myself wanting her to get away with it, though I can't imagine how someone could do something like that. Then there was the whole situation with her best friend's son---very strange. When she said that she was waiting to see who in the family would inherit the mental illness, I was thinking that she did. 


Journal Entry 15 by ladybug74 at BookRing in Book Ring, A Bookring -- Controlled Releases on Tuesday, June 10, 2008

This book has not been rated.

Released 6 yrs ago (6/10/2008 UTC) at BookRing in Book Ring, A Bookring -- Controlled Releases

WILD RELEASE NOTES:

RELEASE NOTES:

Mailed to the next bookring participant, accountkel 


Journal Entry 16 by acountkel from Charlotte, North Carolina USA on Thursday, June 12, 2008

This book has not been rated.

Received today.
This looks bery interesting...
Will read soon!
Thank you for including me! 


Journal Entry 17 by acountkel from Charlotte, North Carolina USA on Thursday, July 10, 2008

8 out of 10

I am very troubled by this book. First, I found it so unnerving that someone could write about killing their mother. What kind of person does that? Well, I googled on Alice Sebold to find out and discovered that Ms. Sebold was brutally raped while attending college at Syracuse University. I believe that this brutal act of violence may be the catalyst that has caused Ms. Sebold to teeter on a violent edge that few authors dare to go.

This book is about and told through the voice of Helen. Helen grew up with a mentally ill mother and a father who turned out to be almost as ill. Helen kills her 86 year old mother and the book follows Helen through the events that occur after the crime, as well as, Helen's thoughts of her past.

There is a small section of the book that gives the reader an idea of what it was like for Helen to be a daughter of a mother like hers and how the title of the book relates to the story. “The moon is whole all the time, but we can’t always see it. What we see is an almost moon or a non-quite moon. The rest is hiding just out of view, but there’s only one moon, so we follow it in the sky. We plan our lives based on its rhythms and tides.” “I knew I was supposed to understand something from my father’s explanation, but what I came away with was that, just as we were stuck with the moon, so too we were stuck with my mother.”

There are some great journal entries for this book.
I have lauraloo's address, will send on this weekend.
Thank you katrina for including me.
This is a book I will never forget. 


Journal Entry 18 by acountkel from Charlotte, North Carolina USA on Tuesday, July 15, 2008

This book has not been rated.

Mailed off to lauraloo29 yesterday 


Journal Entry 19 by winglauraloo29wing from Edmonton, Alberta Canada on Friday, July 25, 2008

This book has not been rated.

Arrived safe and sound today. I so happy to see that I am last. I have a couple of rings at the moment that are taking longer than expected. Not to worry. I will get to this one in a bit. :) 


Journal Entry 20 by winglauraloo29wing from Edmonton, Alberta Canada on Tuesday, August 19, 2008

This book has not been rated.

Hmmmmm not sure what I thought of this book.

Mental illness is certainly a difficult topic. Interesting on how it affects people. As someone who has her own issues, it was a read I wanted to finish. Not sure if I got it though.

I too found the Hamish thing unrealistic.

I will send this out on another ray. 


Journal Entry 21 by winglauraloo29wing from Edmonton, Alberta Canada on Tuesday, August 19, 2008

This book has not been rated.

I'm going to send this out as a ray.

Rules: Not many. Please journal the book's arrival and departure. And please keep it moving by keeping it no longer than 4 weeks. The last person is free to release the book as they wish.

1. AceofHearts - Canada (Intl)
2. raeliz64 - UK (Intl)
3. Brujula - France (Intl)
4. easterngirl71 - US (US)
5. dvg - US (NA)
6. Dreamer-kitty - Canada (NA)
7. spoiledrotten - US (US)
8. Rrrcaron - US (Intl)
9. Mallary - France (Europe) - asked to be skipped
10. Lizzy-stardust - UK - asked to be skipped
11.


Beginning its journey August 26th. Happy travels! 


Journal Entry 22 by wingAceofHeartswing from Mississauga, Ontario Canada on Wednesday, September 03, 2008

This book has not been rated.

received today in the mail 


Journal Entry 23 by wingAceofHeartswing from Mississauga, Ontario Canada on Sunday, September 07, 2008

6 out of 10

This is a very troubling book. It all takes place in the span of 24 hours after Helen murders her mother. Helen's mother, Clair is mentally ill and very demanding on her daughter. She also suffers from agoraphobia, the fear of leaving your own home. When a neighbour calls Helen to tell her that her mother does not even recognize her, Helen goes over to find her mother sitting in her own waste. What is she to do? Well, her solution is murder.

Helen is far too controlled. The events that follow are really not believable. The book is written in the first person but it is too literary for that and the fact that Helen is trying to come to terms with what she has done. Sebold does develop the characters very well. The relationship between Helen and her parents and their relationship is very complex and the reader is pulled in. I have loved Sebold's previous two books but didn't like this one much. 


Journal Entry 24 by wingAceofHeartswing from Mississauga, Ontario Canada on Thursday, September 18, 2008

This book has not been rated.

mailed today 


Journal Entry 25 by wingraeliz64wing from Leicester, Leicestershire United Kingdom on Sunday, December 07, 2008

This book has not been rated.

Received today - thanks very much. 


Journal Entry 26 by wingraeliz64wing from Leicester, Leicestershire United Kingdom on Monday, January 05, 2009

6 out of 10

Hmmm...well, this is a strange one! I know the subject matter is dark, but that isn't why I didn't enjoy the book. I just didn't 'get it' I suppose and was left at the end wondering what the point was. 


Journal Entry 27 by wingraeliz64wing from Leicester, Leicestershire United Kingdom on Monday, January 12, 2009

This book has not been rated.

On it's way to Brujula. 


Journal Entry 28 by Brujula from Valenciennes, Nord-Pas-de-Calais France on Monday, January 19, 2009

This book has not been rated.

arrived safely in my mailbox, where I found it yesterday.
Thank you! 


Journal Entry 29 by Brujula from Valenciennes, Nord-Pas-de-Calais France on Thursday, February 12, 2009

8 out of 10

I can't say I've enjoyed reading this book, as the subject is dark, and the author makes us feel really uneasy. But it is a very interesting novel, and I think the narrator, Helen, is very well depicted. Her mixed feelings about her mentally ill mother, that love-hate relationship, her blindness about her father's problems...
Completely different from the lonely bones, but more mature. A good novel.
Thank you for sharing! 


Journal Entry 30 by Brujula at By mail, A Bookcrossing member -- Controlled Releases on Saturday, February 28, 2009

This book has not been rated.

Released 5 yrs ago (2/28/2009 UTC) at By mail, A Bookcrossing member -- Controlled Releases

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

mailed to the following reader, back across the Atlantic! 


Journal Entry 31 by easterngirl71 from Alton, Illinois USA on Thursday, April 02, 2009

This book has not been rated.

This will be the first book ray book that I read since I am now back in IL. I will go as fast as I can and get it shipped out to the next person in line just as soon as possible! Thanks for including me!! 


Journal Entry 32 by dvg from Flanders, New Jersey USA on Friday, April 17, 2009

This book has not been rated.

Arrived safely in NJ today! I'm so excited to read this book having recently finished The Lovely Bones and loved it! I will start this tomorrow and move it along quickly to the next in line. Thank you, lauraloo29, for including me in this ray!

(I have PM'd Dreamer-kitty for mailing addy.) 


Journal Entry 33 by dvg at Postal Release, Given to a fellow bookcrosser -- Controlled Releases on Tuesday, April 21, 2009

10 out of 10

Released 5 yrs ago (4/21/2009 UTC) at Postal Release, Given to a fellow bookcrosser -- Controlled Releases

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

On its way to Dreamer-kitty this afternoon.

MY COMMENTS: I stayed awake last night until 2am because I just had to finish this book! The characters of this novel grabbed me from page one. The story that revealed itself of this dysfunctional family pulled at my heart. I had such compassion for Helen. She grew up in a family with mentally ill parents which I’m sure was very demanding on a child, especially when one is left to defend a family members lack of action. As Helen grew up and came to realize her family dysfunction, the failure of her own marriage, she is left to care for her mother. In the rational act of caring, she has a moment of irrational behavior that will change the life of her and those around her when she shares this information. During the brief time of contemplation, she encounters Hamish and continues that moment of irrationality or perhaps it is just a moment of escape?

I applaud Alice Sebold in writing such a complex novel of human emotions and capturing all of them so expertly. Whether you are left loving or hating this novel, you must acknowledge the author’s amazing writing style.

I loved it. I recommend it highly. (I have to admit I shed a couple of tears.)
 


Journal Entry 34 by Dreamer-kitty from Calgary, Alberta Canada on Wednesday, April 29, 2009

5 out of 10

Book arrived safe and sound today! Thanks dvg for the tea as well, I look forward to trying it, it sounds very yummy!

02/07/2009
Sorry guys i've been soo busy I haven't had much time to read. I have finally managed to finish the book and have msgd spoiledrotten for shipping info. Sorry agian for holding this up.
 


Journal Entry 35 by Dreamer-kitty at Calgary, Alberta Canada on Saturday, July 18, 2009

This book has not been rated.

Released 5 yrs ago (7/17/2009 UTC) at Calgary, Alberta Canada

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

mailed to spoiledrotten. should be there in 10 business days.

Sincerely,
Dreamer-kitty

 


Journal Entry 36 by spoiledrotten from Waldwick, New Jersey USA on Tuesday, July 28, 2009

This book has not been rated.

Received in the mail today along with another ring. Will read ASAP. Thanks for the tea! Can't wait to try it. 


Journal Entry 37 by spoiledrotten from Waldwick, New Jersey USA on Thursday, August 06, 2009

6 out of 10

Well, I finished this book yesterday and there are a lot of really good comments about this book. Without repeating those, I must agree with everything that Inver said. Thanks so much for including me. 


Journal Entry 38 by spoiledrotten at Lancaster, New Hampshire USA on Thursday, August 06, 2009

This book has not been rated.

Released 4 yrs ago (8/6/2009 UTC) at Lancaster, New Hampshire USA

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

Sent off today to Rrrcaron so that it may continue on its journey. 


Journal Entry 39 by Rrrcaron from Lancaster, New Hampshire USA on Tuesday, August 18, 2009

This book has not been rated.

I received this book in the mail today. Will get to it soon.
Ruth 


Journal Entry 40 by Rrrcaron from Lancaster, New Hampshire USA on Friday, September 18, 2009

This book has not been rated.

I'm kind of at a loss as to what to say about this book.The subject matter of course was very troubling. Helen was a survivor, and dealt with her life's problems longer than most could have. I wished it had ended a little differently. I'm not very familiar with mental illness, thank God, but the book ended with so many unanswered questions. Thanks for including me, and sending on to next reader.
Ruth 




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