Book Review: Valley of the Moon by Bronwyn A

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BW Synopsis

There’s just one semester left at the Briar School for Girls in Sonoma, CA. But it will take more than straight As for Lana Goodwin to survive…


Senior year is not going well for 17-year-old Lana Goodwin. Her father’s vintage car BC Valley of the Moon by Bronwyn Archerbusiness is about to crash and burn, the nicest (and cutest) teacher at school was fired under a cloud of scandal, and her hot sort-of boyfriend may or may not have something big to hide.

She’s also totally over being the class pauper. It’s bad enough her dad was briefly married to the head of the board—the rich, cruel, impeccably groomed Ramona Crawford. What’s worse is going to school with her vindictive ex-stepsister, who never misses an opportunity to make her life hell. Not ever.

It also happens to be the tenth anniversary of her mother’s suicide. No one knows why Annie Goodwin jumped off the Golden Gate Bridge the day after Christmas. She didn’t leave a note. She wasn’t sick. Even Lana’s father can’t explain it. Ten years later, someone—or something—starts sending her clues about her mother’s past.

Before Lana can escape to college, she finds herself in a life-or-death race to uncover her mother’s long-buried secrets.

Can she claim her birthright before her future and her life are snatched away?

Valley of the Moon is a modern-day fairy tale with some intense themes.

BW My Review

This unique and mysterious novel packed with some actions and a little bit paranormal will make you sit for hours on your chair or will keep you reading this non-stop.

Whoa! I don’t know how I’m going to write this review. It is like my mind was still on the story, and I’m not yet recovering from the action that just happened in it. I never expect it to be mind crackling and to be honest; I need the next book right now. My curiosity on the story never fades as I flipped the following pages.

The book was all about Lana finding out a secret her mother hides for a long time, and her father never seemed to know anything about that secret, or he just doesn’t want to speak about it. Aside from that, her stepmother fired her favorite teacher on Briar, then her father’s business is now falling down, and her boyfriend makes something unforgivable to her. Now, as she uncovers that secret, she will have some adventures on her own that she never thought will happen to her.

When you decide to stop being scared, your enemies lose their power to scare you. – Bronwyn Archer, Valley of the Moon

This novel is written from a first person’s point of view.

The main character, Lana Goodwin, is a strong girl even if her story can be compared to some fairy tales princess’ story. I liked how she stands up and have the courage to continue her life even if she gets hurt in the process. She is also smart to put together all the clues she has that will lead her to find her mother’s secrets. She really is the modern fairytale princess who never gives up and who never lose hope.

The other characters can be easily predicted if they’ll do good or not. Just like how Caleb acts every time he is with Lana. I can already sense that he is not the guy for her, which proves it when I reached the part where he did something after the party that will hurt Lana. And of course, her stepsister Cressida who always makes her life like hell is also a predictable character. When she said sorry to Lana and told her that she wants to be friends with her, I already know that it is just a lie.

And then here comes the other character named Alexander who gives me mixed signals. He is Lana’s distant cousin from her mother’s side. He is handsome and hot, but I don’t know him well enough to trust him with Lana. I am now excited to get the next book to know him more, and I hope that he’s not a jerk like Caleb.

Reaching the end of this book, not knowing a thing that this one will have a book two just makes me want to speak to the author so she can already send me a copy of it. It is a little bit frustrating when you are already enjoying reading a book but unfortunately, it has a continuation, and it is not yet published, so you’re going to wait more before you get to hold in your hands the next book.

The plot and the characters are all well-written. The place where the story happens named Sonoma County and how it describes is beautiful. Miss Bronwyn just makes it perfect with the way she put all the scenes together and creating an incredible novel.

I am recommending this novel to everyone who likes to read a fairytale-like story. This story will make you dream and wish something you’ve wanted to happen in your life. If we have the same genre preferences, then I know you’ll like this one.

Disclaimer: I received a review copy from the author via Xpresso Book Tour.

BW My Rating

Rating 5

BW Book Details

Publisher: Bronarch Books

Publication Date: April 13, 2016

Series: Valley of the Moon, 01

Genre(s): Young Adult, Contemporary

Language: English

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BW About the Author

Bronwyn Archer is a young-adult author, digital media copywriter, and mother to several children, last time she counted.

At her all-girls high school, Bronwyn discovered a love of writing and the importance of a proper fake ID. The only sport she was good at was boogie-boarding, but she decided to hang up her board after a terrifying close encounter with a seven-foot blue shark in the Santa Monica Bay.

She still gets nervous in black-bottomed swimming pools.

After graduating from the University of Pennsylvania with degrees in English and Art History, she moved to Paris, where she edited a magazine for expatriates. After failing to become the next Hemingway—despite putting in many hours at the Ritz Hotel’s Hemingway Bar—she moved back to the States, where she developed a semi-successful career in New York and Los Angeles as a copywriter for ad agencies and companies like HBO and Disney.

Now Bronwyn writes fiction and raises children. She’s up to two rescue mutts and four kids, which makes her a semi-freak in this neck of the woods, but she’s learned that once you decide to live your life your way, everything else gets a little easier.

Besides writing and expertly avoiding baskets of laundry that need folding, Bronwyn loves movies from the 80s, comedy, Disneyland (sorry WDW), the paintings of Winslow Homer and Maxfield Parrish, coffee, Paris, Oscar Wilde, hot sauce, the Christmas season, Thai street food, making things with felt, and the smell of freshly printed books.

She is still searching for her own “signature fragrance,” which she’ll know when she finds it.

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