Meet the Moon (Paperback)
In 1970, 13-year-old Jody Moran wants pierced ears, a kiss from a boy, and more attention from her mother. It’s not fair. Seems like her mother is more worked up about the Apollo 13 astronauts, who may not make it back to earth safely. As it happens, the astronauts are spared a crash landing, but Jody is not, for three days after splashdown, her mother dies in a car accident. Now, Jody will never know if her mother really loved her. Jody’s father has taught them to believe in the “Power of Intention.” Announce what you want to the world to make it happen. But could the power of Jody’s jealousy and anger have caused Mom’s accident? To relieve her guilt and sadness, she devotes herself to mothering her three younger siblings and helping Dad, which quickly proves too much for her, just as persuading quirky Grandma Cupcakes to live with them proves too much for Grandma. That’s when Jody decides to find someone to marry her father, a new mom who will love her best. Jody reads high and low to learn about love, marriage, and death. Each first—bra, kiss, boyfriend—which makes her miss her mother, teaches her that death doesn’t happen just once.
Kerry L. Malawista’s essays have appeared in the New York Times, Washington Post, Baltimore Sun, Boston Globe, Zone 3, Washingtonian Magazine, and Delmarva Review (Pushcart Prize nomination). Co-author of Who’s Behind the Couch (2017, Routledge), Wearing My Tutu to Analysis (2011), The Therapist in Mourning (2013), and When the Garden Isn’t Eden (2022) with Columbia University Press. She is co-chair of New Directions in Writing, and founder of The Things They Carry.
"A brilliantly faceted, life-affirming story about a girl and her family as they struggle to go on without Mom during a single year in the early seventies. Delightfully poignant and equally funny, this story reminiscent of Judy Blume will no doubt steal the heart of readers of all ages – just like it did mine." —Jennifer Richard Jacobson, author of Small as an Elephant
"Meet the Moon captures a fractured world spinning out of control after the sudden loss of a funny and beloved mother who wanted her children to see the stars and beyond. Told through the eyes of thirteen-year-old, Jody Moran, one of four siblings, we go on a journey of hope and healing in Kerry Malawista's tender, funny novel of a family finding their way home again." —Kerry Madden, author of Offsides
"In Meet the Moon Kerry Malawista‘s heroine, Jody Moran, brings us along as she stumbles from 13 to 14, finding her way forward while grieving the sudden death of a mother whose love never seemed quite enough. This beautifully written, sharply observed novel takes us on a journey that is scary, tumultuous, yet grounded always in the love of family. Recreating 1970's America and the torture and promise of adolescence, Meet the Moon gives us a plucky narrator we want to enfold and never let go." —Marita Golden, author of The Wide Circumference of Love
"Jody's just a regular teen, with regular teen things to worry about. But then in a blink, there's a wreck, a family in shock: Mom’s gone, baby brother is in the hospital. Boyfriends, best friends, teachers, siblings, the neighbor across the street, all have a part in helping Jody adjust--but can they deliver? Jody loves her big rowdy family, but soon sees that sometimes Dads can be dumb, big sisters too bossy, teachers too nosy, and even best friends don’t always get it. In the end, all the strength Jody needs is right inside her warm heart. Kerry Malawista knows that heart, and Meet the Moon rises full over the landscape of great reads for teens and grownups alike." —Bill Roorbach, author of Life Among Giants, The Remedy for Love, and Lucky Turtle
"Kerry Malawista's novel Meet the Moon is beautiful and profoundly moving. She brings to vivid life a family dealing with the tragic and shocking loss of their mother and notably a father we’d all wish for. Young people and adults, alike, should find this book both engaging, humorous and reassuring." —Linda Pastan, author of Carnival Evening, former Poet Laureate of Maryland
"Meet The Moon is a lovingly wrought coming-of-age story of a plucky young girl named Jody. It begins with a heartbreaking family tragedy, but is by turns funny, lighthearted, and sweet, and full of precise emotional and psychological details. This is an ideal book for your favorite young adult reader."—Matthew Klam, Author of Who is Rich and Sam The Cat and Other Stories
"Jody Moran is an endearing guide - funny, smart, word-wise - through this sad and triumphant coming-of-age tale. There is such clarifying honesty here, about grief, friendship, resilience and faith. There is as well a keen and vivid sense of an era that seems more innocent than our own and yet remarkably timeless, perhaps because Kerry Malawista understands so well the enduring grace of family love."—Alice McDermott, Author of Charming Billy, National Book Award, After This, finalist Pulitzer Prize
"Malawista’s quietly powerful novel consists of an accumulation of minor, well-observed details that together create a montage of adolescence in difficult times limned with pointillist precision."--Kirkus Review