Book Review: Shadows On The Moon

Book Review: Shadows On The MoonShadows on the Moon by Zoë Marriott
Published by Candlewick Press on April 24th 2012
Pages: 464

Suzume is a shadow-weaver. She can create mantles of darkness and light, walk unseen in the middle of the day, change her face. She can be anyone she wants to be. Except herself.

Suzume died officially the day the Prince's men accused her father of treason. Now even she is no longer sure of her true identity.
Is she the girl of noble birth living under the tyranny of her mother’s new husband, Lord Terayama? A lowly drudge scraping a living in the ashes of Terayama’s kitchens? Or Yue, the most beautiful courtesan in the Moonlit Lands?

Everyone knows Yue is destined to capture the heart of a prince. Only she knows that she is determined to use his power to destroy Terayama.

And nothing will stop her. Not even love.

Based on past experiences with Zoë Marriott's work, I knew early on that this was going to be one of those I HAVE to read this type books.
Despite having that feeling that I HAD to read Shadows On The Moon, I was not really sure what to expect from the book itself. And even though, the blurb does not do the book justice, I had heard rumors flying around that Shadows On The Moon was to be a Japanese Cinderella-type tale with a very strong female lead.
After reading the book, I must admit the rumors were definitely true. But it takes almost too much to get there.
If you have ever read a book by Marriott before, then you will know that she has a certain writing style. And for Shadows On The Moon, my issue did not lie with the writing style as much as it did the pacing. There were times that I seriously contemplated having Shadows On The Moon as a DNF just because it was taking so long for the plot to get moving.
Suzume was a very interesting main character. Initially, I was not completely sure about her. Born to the life of a noble woman, Suzume was not what I expected her to be. Even early on in the book, Suzume was portrayed as an independent girl, which to me culturally, seemed a little off. But hey, it is a book, I will roll with it. Once Suzume makes the transformation into a servant, it was game on.
Final Verdict:
Marriott has a very interesting tale on her hands with Shadows On The Moon. Is it a full blown retelling of Cinderella? No. Is it something completely original? Almost. Shadows On The Moon is a hybrid of sorts. Part original. Part retelling. And once the story gets going, completely engaging. I am so glad that I didn't give up on Shadows On The Moon.
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