Title: The Trouble With Half a Moon
Author: Danette Vigilante
Pages: 192 (hardcover)
Publisher: Putnam Juvenile
Publication Date: January 6, 2011
Challenge: 2011 Debut Author Challenge
Ever since her brother's death, Dellie's life has been quiet and sad. Her mother cries all the time and Dellie lives with the horrible guilt that the accident that killed her brother may have been all her fault.Moving and poignant, The Trouble With Half a Moon immediately stole my heart and kept me absorbed into the life of the characters. Vigilante has entwined a beautiful story with grief, loss, and pain, and with a girl growing up, as she is an observer of life, but not a participator.
But Dellie's world begins to change when new neighbors move into her housing project building. Suddenly men are fighting on the stoop and gunfire is sounding off in the night. In the middle of all that trouble is Corey, an abused five-year-old boy, who's often left home alone and hungry. Dellie strikes up a dangerous friendship with this little boy who reminds her so much of her brother. She wonders if she can do for Corey what she couldn't do for her brother—save him.
Thirteen year old, Dellie, thinks she is the one to blame for her brother’s death. She grapples with these emotions each and every day. The brother’s death triggered the family to grieve unhealthily and affected them in a destructive way, creating a somewhat broken relationship amongst the rest of them. Due to their loss, Dellie’s mother developed somewhat like paranoia and a fear. Dellie’s only connection to reality was her eyes… she watched the world progress through her window. Though, all of that changes when five-year-old Corey moves into her building.
Corey and Dellie’s relationship was on lightning speed… they connected quickly and Dellie becomes Corey’s protector due to being neglected and abused. Her sorrow with the loss of her brother just made her even more protective with Corey and would take any dangers, even though it was risky. The life of Corey was so heart-wrenching to read and it was amazing how Dellie got into his life through the smallest of chances and opening his world, rather than being locked and living with his mom who treated him so harshly.
All the characters in the story were distinctive enough and shared a similarity… and that was struggling with pain and loss. They all were also very sympathetic and even though this deals with death, their feelings, actions, and thoughts hovering in their minds were realistic in many ways.
The Trouble With Half a Moon is a mind-bending and touching deliver into issues that some teens do contend with…. Vigilante has kept me waiting (and wishing) for another novel.