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Book Tour Launch for Jessi Kirby's MOONGLASS

We're so excited to launch Jessi Kirby's book tour for Moonglass! Moonglass will be released by Simon & Schuster on May 3rd, 2011.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 and her life 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 along the shore years ago. And the ebb and flow of the ocean's tide means that nothing -- not the sea glass that she collects on the sand and not the truths behind Anna's mother's death -- stays buried forever.
I was lucky enough to read an ARC of Moonglass last week. I enjoyed every word of Jessi's quiet, lovely and powerful story -- a story haunted by the unsettling yet evocative image of Anna's mother walking into the sea. I especially loved how the ocean serves as another character in Moonglass. Despite the manner in which her mother died, Anna belongs to the ocean, spending as much time as possible in it, under it, beside it. It beckons to her, gifts her jewel-like sea glass, even incites her independence in one memorable scene (see question three below). But it also reminds her of the mysteries surrounding her mother's death -- and life. I finished this book with tears in my eyes, but also with an irresistible urge to hunt for sea glass (and hot lifeguards.)

Below, Jessi Kirby answers a few questions about Moonglass.

What's the significance of the title MOONGLASS?

The word moonglass is one that Anna made up when she was a little girl. She and her mom sometimes went searching for sea glass at night, and when she found a very special piece in the moonlight she called it ‘moonglass’.

MOONGLASS is set in a beach town. Is it a real place? If not, upon where did you base it?

Yes! It is a real place! Crystal Cove is an actual state park in California, with actual abandoned cottages, sea glass-littered sand, and cute lifeguards.

Which was your favorite scene to write in MOONGLASS?

There’s one scene that takes place at a lifeguard bonfire that Anna isn’t supposed to be at. There is so much going through her head in that scene, between a revealing story about her dad, swimming in the ocean at night alongside her crush, the freedom of being out when she shouldn’t be, jumping off a towering rock…getting caught. I got to pack a lot into it.

Which was the most difficult?

Hmm…I’d have to say it was the very last scene, because I’ve read so many books that are great the whole way through, but then the ending doesn’t quite give you that ‘Wow’ feeling. I wanted it to do that, so I spent a ridiculous amount of time on the last scene trying to get it just right.

What are some young adult novels you think every teen -- and adult! -- should read?
Ooh, I love this one! The Giver, Looking for Alaska, any one by Sarah Dessen -- although This Lullaby and The Truth About Forever are my favorites -- The Hunger Games, The Sky is Everywhere, The Book Thief. I could go on forever, but those are a handful of my very favorites.

What was the most unexpected part of your publishing journey?

I had no idea how many people are involved in creating a book, how many steps it goes through, or how much waiting I’d do, constantly checking my email for any little bit of news.

Do you have any advice for aspiring authors?

Read! It’s the best possible way to study what you want to do, coming from the best possible teachers. Pay attention to the things that leap out at you or move you as you read. Savor them. Study them. Then remember what it was you loved reading so much when you sit down to write.

Kirsten Hubbard

Kirsten is the author of Like Mandarin, Wanderlove, and the middle grade novel Watch the Sky.

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  1. Wow, this book sounds beautiful and right up my alley! Thanks for the review and interview.
    - Sophia.

  2. Thank you Kirsten! You just made my morning with this!

  3. Sounds amazing. I am definitely craving the water...spring fever and such. Thanks for bringing this one to my attention. xx

  4. This book sound amazing! Sea glass and cute lifeguards!...I have to read it. O__O

  5. This sounds great! Thanks for the interview with Jessi, too.

  6. Adding to my to-read shelf. Great Q&A! Thanks for bringing this book to my attention.

  7. Yay! Great interview! I can't wait to see this in bookstores...


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Item Reviewed: Book Tour Launch for Jessi Kirby's MOONGLASS Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Kirsten Hubbard