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The Girl Who Drank the Moon by Kelly…

The Girl Who Drank the Moon (2016)

by Kelly Barnhill

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1,06310311,338 (4.21)81



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Showing 1-5 of 105 (next | show all)
This is my first book by Kelly Barnhill and I've gotta say I hope it isn't my last. She is a storyteller through and through. Here we have a tightly-woven, original tale that's as good as anything with the name Grimm.

The story begins shrouded in suspense. You don't really know what's going on, which is the hook that reels you in. That, and the fact that an innocent baby is about to be sacrificed. Once a year the Council takes possession of the youngest child and leaves it in the woods for the witch. That's all anyone knows. No one questions it.

If this were the truth of what happens, it could be a good story, but Barnhill changes it up nicely and gives you a better story. The witch has no idea why these people leave a baby in the woods, but she comes every year to rescue it. She feeds each child a little starlight and then finds them a nice home. But this year she makes a mistake and feeds the baby moonlight which is much more powerful than starlight. She names the baby Luna and decides to raise her herself.

Luna grows up. "Grandmother" gets old. Luna has no idea what is in store for her when she turns 13. Meanwhile, Luna's birth mother has been a madwoman since her daughter was taken from her. She is locked in a tower and has a kind of magic of her own. But there is a third witch and she is the one who isn't nice. She is the instigator of all this chaos, and of course feeds off people's unhappiness. It's now nearly 13 years since Luna was taken to the woods and Antain, son of the Council Elder, has the youngest son in the village. Antain must kill the witch before his son is taken. The truth must be revealed or an innocent witch will die.

Barnhill weaves it all together seamlessly. She throws in a swamp monster and miniature dragon for good measure. She makes it clear that "sorrow is dangerous and memories are slippery." She makes this theme the backbone of her story. ( )
  valorrmac | Sep 21, 2018 |
A lovely book, that I appreciated more and more the further I got into it. A bit more poetic than I'm used to in style, but not too poetic--reminded me quite a lot actually of the Last Unicorn, that sort of sad, haunting feeling of something lost, leavened by a bit (not too much) of levity, some wonderful, huggable characters (I wish I had a pocket-sized Fyrian to cuddle up to ... well actually I do, he's a non-talking bichon frise but otherwise they're quite similar!), and a moving climax.

(Note: 5 stars = rare and amazing, 4 = quite good book, 3 = a decent read, 2 = disappointing, 1 = awful, just awful. There are a lot of 4s and 3s in the world!) ( )
  ashleytylerjohn | Sep 19, 2018 |
With all those awards, that great cover, and my enthusiasm for children's fantasy, I had huge expectations for this book. I enjoyed it, but not 5 stars enjoyed. I'm not sure why not. Maybe I would have liked it more if I was still ten?

Now channeling my 10-year-old self:
It was pretty okay. I liked the swamp a lot. But that girl bugged me. She did stupid stuff and I wouldn't have liked her as my friend. The little dragon was neat though. And I want to meet the swamp monster.

Yup, that's about right for adult me as well. ( )
  JanetNoRules | Sep 17, 2018 |

I am a different person after reading this book. Amazing story and really, really touching!

I intend to have the book near me whenever I need the characters' company! I'm not sure If I can just be apart from Xan, Glerk, Antain and SPECIALLY Fyrian! This cute dragon deserves a book of his own.
I do like Luna, the main character, don't get me wrong; but the other ones were so... amazing, that she became secondary for me.

( )
  rpilar | Sep 15, 2018 |
A very beautifully crafted book. I loved the characters so much. The plot and magic were a bit fuzzy and vague at times, and it was hard to figure out what was going on in some of the action scenes. But I loved the way everything tied together at the end.
  aratiel | Sep 5, 2018 |
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For Ted, with love.
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Yes. There is a witch in the woods.
There was a time when her feet fit neatly on the curve of the earth ... (p. 127-128)
"'Patience has no wing,'" Glerk recited as she walked. / Patience does not run / Nor blow, nor skitter, nor falter. / Patience is the swell of the ocean; / Patience is the sigh of the mountain; / Patience is the shirr of the Bog; / Patience is the chorus of stars, / Infinitely singing.'" (p. 135-136)
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"An epic fantasy about a young girl raised by a witch, a swamp monster, and a Perfectly Tiny Dragon, who must unlock the powerful magic buried deep inside her. Every year, the people of the Protectorate leave a baby as an offering to the witch who lives in the forest. They hope this sacrifice will keep her from terrorizing their town. But the witch in the forest, Xan, is kind and gentle. She shares her home with a wise Swamp Monster named Glerk and a Perfectly Tiny Dragon, Fyrian. Xan rescues the abandoned children and delivers them to welcoming families on the other side of the forest, nourishing the babies with starlight on the journey. One year, Xan accidentally feeds a baby moonlight instead of starlight, filling the ordinary child with extraordinary magic. Xan decides she must raise this enmagicked girl, whom she calls Luna, as her own. To keep young Luna safe from her own unwieldy power, Xan locks her magic deep inside her. When Luna approaches her thirteenth birthday, her magic begins to emerge on schedule--but Xan is far away. Meanwhile, a young man from the Protectorate is determined to free his people by killing the witch. Soon, it is up to Luna to protect those who have protected her--even if it means the end of the loving, safe world she's always known. The acclaimed author of The Witch's Boy has created another epic coming-of-age fairy tale destined to become a modern classic"--… (more)

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