I was absolutely delighted to receive a pre-release copy of Ginny Moon by Benjamin Ludwig for review last month. I had been asked to publish my review on the release date. When the book arrived and was quite thick, I panicked; how would I read this before the review was due? I began reading immediately, and as it happened I needn’t have worried; the book is so well written and gripping that I finished it within a couple of days!
To say I enjoyed this book would be a gross understatement. I really could not put it down; I was hooked within the first couple of pages. The book is narrated by Ginny Moon herself, a girl with autism living in a world she struggles to understand. She was forcibly removed by the police from the care of her abusive mother Gloria five years ago, and since then she’s lived with several foster families. Now she is living in her fourth Forever Home, but she’s determined to get back to her mother’s apartment and find something she left under her bed. She’s savvy enough to know that her Forever family won’t let her do that; her mother is totally unreliable. And so she begins plotting and scheming and stealing, planning her own kidnapping so that she can get back to find what she left under the bed.
There’s an author’s note at the end of the book where Ludwig explains that he is an adoptive parent to a teenager with autism and developmental disabilities; this explains how he is able to write such an insightful book. As a reader it’s as infuriating as it must be for Ginny, that the adults around her don’t seem to understand that she just needs to get back to her mother’s apartment.
One aspect of the book I really appreciated was that Ginny’s forever parents were not portrayed as perfect people; they lose their cool and snap at her, and at times her mother especially behaves quite badly – but in a way perhaps we all probably would if we were in her position.
The ending keeps you guessing until the very last minute; I didn’t know how things would turn out until they actually did. This really is a remarkable book
Ginny Moon is released in hardcover and in electronic format on June 1st 2017.
Thanks for reading.