Narrator: Amy Rubinate
Publisher: Candlewick Press
Length: 11 hrs
Release Date: July 7th 2011
Series: The Moonlit Lands #1
Genres: Fairy Tales, Folk Tales, Legends & Mythology, Fantasy, Love & Romance, Young Adult
A powerful tale of magic, love and revenge set in a fairy tale Japan.
Suzume is a shadow weaver. Her illusions allow her to be anyone she wants - a fabulous gift for a girl desperate to escape her past. But who is she really?
A heartbroken girl of noble birth? A drudge scraping by in a great house's kitchens? Or Yue, the most beautiful courtesan in the Moonlit Lands?
Whatever her true identity, she is determined to capture the heart of a prince - and use his power to destroy those who murdered her family. Nothing will stop her. Not even love.
An accidental reread
When I first started this audiobook it felt awfully familiar. Turns out when I checked Goodreads I’d already marked this book as read way back in 2012. I’d even reviewed it! From the sounds of it I’d thought it was an okay read but it had been so long I was curious to see if my thoughts might have changed.
A Japanese fantasy with Cinderella elements
The book is kind of marketed as a Cinderella retelling but it’s not. There are definitely the key Cinderella elements (the ball, the shoes, the working) but there are more than enough differences to make itself its own unique story. I loved the setting (it’s very reminiscent of ancient Japan) and the magic system was super interesting but not fully explored.
My favourite part was the romance
The romance is so slow burn and sweet. After all Suzume had been through, she deserved someone as sweet and caring as Otieno. I would have loved to see him be able to spend some more time with her being happy. They deserve more happy memories together.
It’s not a light hearted novel
Despite the fairy tale retelling prospect, this book isn’t happy. It starts with the slaughter of Suzume’s family, then follows her emotional path toward vengeance. Her road isn’t easy, isn’t happy. She has a lot of blame and anger which she does express through self harm. It was heart breaking to read, but really made me feel for her as a character.
I wanted an epilogue
Just to see Athesea (I could be spelling that wrong, having listened to the audiobook ha) and see the characters find happiness in their new lives. After all they’ve been through they deserve a good life. I would like to know how they fare after all they’ve been through. Maybe we’ll get lucky and see them in BAREFOOT ON THE WIND, the companion novel that’s a Beauty and the Beast retelling.
SHADOWS ON THE MOON is a book I didn’t expect to enjoy more this second time round but I did. It hit me at the right time I think and everything just worked. It’s not a light book, with Suzume struggling through many challenges as she grows and learns about herself. I loved all the characters and can only hope that we get at least glimpses in the companion novel, BAREFOOT ON THE WIND