"The yard of this house is a graveyard of moments and everything left behind is a clue. And I am here to dig."
There’s a ghost haunting 208 Water Street. She doesn’t know who she was, or why she’s still here. She does know that she is drawn to Maggie, the new girl in town, and her friends - beautiful, carefree Pauline and Liam, the boy who loves her.
But the ghost isn’t all that’s lurking in Gill Creek… Someone is killing young girls all across the county. Can the ghost keep these three friends safe? Or does she have another purpose? - Goodreads
Title: The Moment Collector
Author: Jodi Lynn Anderson
Published: August 7th 2014
Publisher: Orchard Books
Source: An ARC was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
This book was first published last year as The Vanishing Season, which I find to be an unsuitable title - The Moment Collector is much better suited to the story in my opinion.
Before I get into my review I need to make sure you understand some things.
1) Many people did not enjoy this book as they expected a serial killer/ghost story. These are elements of the books but definitely not a MAJOR part. It is an absolutelybeautiful book about friendship, romance and coming of age, with a ghost twist.
2) I wouldn’t call it an exciting book per se. There is a killer but there is no tension or fear. This will put some people off but I urge you to read this book for other reasons I’ll go into in a moment.
3) This book HAS received some unfair (imo) reviews because of expectations not being met. Although different from expected, it is a wonderful read.
OKAY! Now that’s done I can go into the review! I loved this book. Anderson’s writing is absolutely exquisite and although the plot lacks tension, Anderson’s writing makes it seem like there doesn’t need to be any tension. The story is told in third person from mostly Maggie’s point of view. But occasionally there are parts told from the perspective of a ghost who lives in Maggie’s house. The ghost does not know who she was and slips around in time. These are the parts I looked forward to. They are written in such haunting prose and are filled with a sense of inevitability. For me, there was no shock in this book. Even in the end, when everything is revealed, Anderson really cleverly (using the ghost) makes you feel as if this was always going to happen. Not in a negative, helpless way but in a sort of satisfied way. Like, a kind of peace that everything has fallen into place. Ugh I can feel my words mushing together it’s just I am unable to put into words how utterly gorgeous Anderson’s writing is. Although the plot will leave some people disappointed for lack of ‘action’ I found the pure simplicity of this book incredible.
The characters were fabulous because they were so real. There are so many writers these days who write their characters as flawless. That they handle all situations perfectly. And they also use stereotypes such as antagonist female teenager - beautiful and popular compared to the protagonist who is quiet and meek. Plus the love triangles which I have grown to hate due to how they are ALL THE SAME. However, each of Anderson’s characters were so unique. Maggie, the protagonist, although quiet - she isn’t meek. She is headstrong and gets angry. Just like the best of us, she can be petty and mean sometimes. Pauline - she is beautiful and gets the attention of others but she doesn’t utilise it. I loved how childlike she is, how she is so naive compared to Maggie but not in a pathetic way. Liam - finally a boy who isn’t obsessed with the protagonist! Although there is a love triangle is this book, it isn’t cheesy. It’s complex, and gritty and necessary, like those in life, for the characters to grow and develop. I can’t really describe these characters fully because they are so real - it would be more accurate to describe them as people.
Overall, although differing from expectations, this book is an exquisitely haunting mystery, with characters so real they leap off the page and writing so beautiful it will linger with you for hours. I highly recommend and will definitely be reading more of Jodi Lynn Anderson’s work.
Will you be checking this out when it’s released tomorrow? :)