3 Oct 2016

ARC #Review: WHEN THE MOON WAS OURS by Anna-Marie McLemore


Author: Anna-Marie McLemore
Source: eARC via Publisher
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
Publication Date: October 4, 2016
Rating: 4.5/5 stars

When the Moon Was Ours follows two characters through a story that has multicultural elements and magical realism, but also has central LGBT themes—a transgender boy, the best friend he’s falling in love with, and both of them deciding how they want to define themselves.

To everyone who knows them, best friends Miel and Sam are as strange as they are inseparable. Roses grow out of Miel’s wrist, and rumors say that she spilled out of a water tower when she was five. Sam is known for the moons he paints and hangs in the trees, and for how little anyone knows about his life before he and his mother moved to town. 

But as odd as everyone considers Miel and Sam, even they stay away from the Bonner girls, four beautiful sisters rumored to be witches. Now they want the roses that grow from Miel’s skin, convinced that their scent can make anyone fall in love. And they’re willing to use every secret Miel has fought to protect to make sure she gives them up
Disclaimer: I received an eARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. This in no way impacted my opinion of this novel.

GOSH THIS ONE IS SO WONDERFUL. It's as lyrical and beautiful as THE WEIGHT OF FEATHERS with so much more magic and suffering. And my heart literally broke into a million pieces only for it to be put back together bit by bit by Samir and Miel. These two though, these two. 
All the characters in this one were wonderfully written. They all had motives, secrets, agency, and wanted to do what was best for themselves and those they cared about, even if they were going about it in an incorrect fashion. I really felt for all the Bonner girls too and it is just amazing to me that McLemore could make me feel so much for those who were so rude and malicious towards Miel and Samir.

I liked that Miel wanted to protect Samir and would do anything she had to in order to do so. I really felt for her and her journey to discover that what most people say is a curse, is actually something beautiful to her. And I think Samir had a pretty similar journey. He really learned so much and I think it was beautiful to see how culture intertwined with this one. I loved everything about them and their relationship. It was so wonderful to see them as people and to see them as a couple because they were so good for one another. They lifted each other up instead of bringing the other down. They both wanted to learn everything about the other person and they were just so perfect.

My only issue with this one was it was a little difficult to follow at the beginning. I was totally hooked and enthralled because of how beautiful the writing was, but I felt like reading the first two-three chapters was like jumping over hurdles. But once I got into the flow of the writing and the story, I was so in love with the book.

This was a beautiful story about how releasing secrets can crack the mask you are wearing but that finally allows you to show your true self. I highly recommend picking up this book (and THE WEIGHT OF FEATHERS) because it is so wonderful.


  1. The Best Man by Richard Peck is the best one I've read.

  2. I am so glad to see you enjoyed this one! I've been super intrigued by it, so the more positive reviews I see the better. :) It's so hard to pick a favorite diverse book, as there have been so many great ones - maybe this one will become my new favorite! Thanks for the giveaway opportunity. :)

  3. Aah I've been wanting to read this one for a while, and I'm so glad its as lyrical and beautiful as I had hopef!

  4. My fave diverse book has to be The Wrath and the Dawn by Rene Adheidh :-) Thank you for the giveaway!

  5. I really don't know what my favorite diverse read would be.. That's so difficult!

  6. I have been wanting to read this book, so thanks so much for the opportunity!! One of my favorite diverse books is Under a Painted Sky. Stacey Lee has the most gorgeous writing style

  7. I have been wanting to read this book, so thanks so much for the opportunity!! One of my favorite diverse books is Under a Painted Sky. Stacey Lee has the most gorgeous writing style

  8. I really enjoyed OUTRUN THE MOON and I'LL GIVE YOU THE SUN!

  9. I've really wanted to read this, so thank you so much for the oppurtunity!

  10. Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon. ❤

  11. Written in the Stars by Aisha Saeed


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