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"The Moon and More" was okay, not the greatest YA contemporary romance, but I really loved though how Dessen ended things. I was not expecting it and I was glad that she didn't go out on a cliche with things. I definitely liked how this one was played and how the main character (Emaline) gets the differences between her father (the man who fathered her with her mother) and her dad (the man who has been there for her almost always).
"The Moon and More" has Emaline dealing with her last summer before she starts college. Emaline has a lot of things to work through, not starting off with the fact that her father who initially promised to pay for college no matter where she got in, suddenly changes things and Emaline has to go to a different college. When her father pops up with her younger half brother in tow, she has to deal with the two of them for the whole summer.
Emaline also hits a cross-roads with her long term boyfriend Luke. When they break up she immediately rushes into things with what she thinks is a great summer fling, Theo.
Theo presses Emaline to leave her small town behind her and rush to bigger and better things.
I liked Emaline, but thought she waffled too much. I wish I had seen more push back with her father, Theo, and even her ex Luke. She didn't really do a great job of articulating what she wanted until the very end.
I did not like Theo at all. I don't know why the last couple of Dessen books I have read, I have ended up disliking the love interest. Probably because I don't think Dessen does a good job of calling all of the problematic things out with some of the male characters.
I wish that some of the secondary characters could have been developed more (Daisy and Morris).
The small town of Colby in North Carolina does come alive. I can see why it would be hard for Emmaline to let all that go. Dessen does a great job of making you see why Emaline loves it so much.
The ending surprised me (in a good way) and I was glad for once that Dessen actually for once didn't just brush over issues with problematic male leads. I think the reason why I loved "Dreamland" so much is that Dessen actually let you see the good and the bad and you didn't have a HEA just because it was a romance novel. She took that route here and I didn't think it was a bad thing to do.