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I read once that water is a symbol for emotions. And for a while now, I’ve thought maybe my mother drowned in both.
Anna’s life is upended when her father accepts a job transfer the summer before her junior year. It’s bad enough that she has to leave her friends behind, but her dad is moving them to the beach where her parents first met and fell in love—a place awash in memories that Anna would just as soon leave under the surface.
While life on the beach is pretty great, with ocean views and one adorable lifeguard in particular, there are also family secrets that were buried years ago. And the ebb and flow of the ocean’s tide means that nothing—not the sea glass that collects along the shore, and not the truths behind Anna’s mother’s death—stays buried forever.
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Read an Excerpt
Rain and wind pelted the ocean’s surface so hard it looked like it was boiling. In the passenger seat of our VW bus, I shivered despite the warm, muggy air. My dad jumped into the driver’s seat and shook the rain off.
“Weird summer storm, huh?” Water dripped from his face as he tried to catch my eye.
I looked away.
“You ready? Sure you’ve got everything?”
“Yep. Got it all.” I paused, staring straight out the windshield. “Oh, wait—except for my friends, my school, my life …”... see more
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Reading Group Guide
by Jessi Kirby
1.On page 12, Anna reflects, “[T]he water had become the place where I felt most at home.” Where do you feel most at home? What are the qualities that matter most in feeling at home?
2.Describe the picturesque setting of Moonglass. How does the setting influence the story? Which elements of the setting strike you as most important?
3.The ocean was an omnipresent, though ever-changing, feature in Moonglass. Think back to how Jessi Kirby described the ocean at various points in the book. In what ways did the “mood” of the ocean reflect the “mood” of the book?
4.When Joy tells Anna the legend of mermaid tears, she concludes, “It’s stories like that that make the little things beautiful,” (p. 87). What does she mean by this? Consider some of the childhood stories you grew up with. In what ways does Joy’s remark hold true in your own life?
5.Questioning is a prevalent theme throughout the story. Anna’s father stops telling her about her mother because Anna stopped asking about her. Joy introduces her class by inviting students to ask questions about their new course material. Joy later comments to Anna, “Answers to most of our questions do exist. You just have to ask them,” (p. 122). What are the most important questions you’ve faced in your life? How have yo see more