Review: Between Us and the Moon

Author: Rebecca Maizel
Genre: YA Contemporary
Page Length: 384 pages
Publication Date: June 30, 2015
Publisher: HarperTeen
Source: Borrowed via library

A luminous young adult novel that evokes Judy Blume's Forever for a new generation.
Ever since Sarah was born, she's lived in the shadow of her beautiful older sister, Scarlett.  But this summer on Cape Cod, she's determined to finally grow up.  Then she meets gorgeous college boy Andrew.  He sees her as the girl she wants to be.  A girl who's older than she is.  A girl like Scarlett.

Before she knows what's happened, one little lie has transformed into something real.  And by the end of August, she might have to choose between falling in love, and finding herself.

Fans of Jenny Han and Stephanie Perkins and destined to fall for this story about how life and love are impossible to predict.

If you give me a premise about stars and a cute summer romance, count me in.  When I first heard of Between Us and the Moon by Rebecca Maizel, it wasn't even a question whether or not I was going to read it.

Unfortunately, Between Us and the Moon wasn't quite the book I had envisioned or hoped for.  However, all in all, it was still a pretty good read, and I ended up enjoying it.

Sarah, or "Bean," as her family likes to call her, is a scientist.  And all her life's she's been looking to the stars.  For months, she's been tracking a particular comet (all calculations by hand), to try for a scholarship.  Even with her genius, Sarah constantly feels like she lives in the shadow of her older sister, Scarlett.

Just before her family's yearly summer trip to Cape Cod, Sarah's boyfriend Tucker calls it quits.  "You watch the world.  I'm not even sure you live in it," he says.  And thus, Sarah's (Tucker-less) summer adventure begins.

My main conniption with Between Us and the Moon is:

1. The cheesiness

2. The lies & deceit

Honestly, Sarah's whole situation just got . . . annoying.  While on Cape Cod, she meets an older, college guy -- Andrew.  For the entire summer, Sarah's living a fantasized, completely made-up life.  She calls it "The Scarlett Experiment."  Her hypothesis?  If she acts like Scarlett, her life will be as seemingly glamorous as Scarlett's.  (But of course, we all know how that will go down in the end.)

To the degree Sarah lived out her lie made the whole situation absurd to me.  And I just didn't like Tucker and Sarah's relationship.  There were definitely some good moments in there, but for the most part, I felt like it was ridiculously cheesy.  And unfortunately enough, I have the same to say about Sarah's personal journey.

I did, however, like how the book left off.  Unlike the romance, the ending was not cheesy at all.  To me, it was realistic and well-written, and achingly honest.  I feel the book redeemed itself by the end, and for that reason, I had to up my rating.

Unfortunately, Between Us and the Moon won't be making my list of favorite contemporaries any time soon, but I can say I don't regret reading it.

Julia's a dreamer. She often zones off periodically throughout the day thinking up plans for the future, pining over fictional characters, and concocting up possible plot lines for stories.

You can find Julia on her main blog, Peach Print, on Twitter @peachprint, on Instagram @yapeach, and of course, right here on the APCB blog.


  1. That's sad that it was so cheesy. It looks so good, but I'm usually not a big fan of cheese. Unless it's done really well (like Colleen Hoover) this still sounds pretty good though!

  2. Ahhh it's been so long since i visited you (or anyone in the blogosphere really) I've missed you and your awesome reviews!
    Sometimes books don't completely work for us and it seems like this one may be one of those. While this one seemed enjoyable enough, it didn't leave a mark and while that sucks at least you did end up enjoying it quite a bit. Hopefully your next read is more enjoyable.

  3. Oh noo, I had huge hopes for this novel but what you described sounds horrible. Pretending to be like someone else for a whole summer doesn't necessarily sounds like something that's good for you, so I don't know what the MC was thinking - especially, considering that she's supposed to be super smart.
    A little cheesiness is alright, but too much can ruin even the best contemporary and make it feel completely unrealistic. At least the ending turned out to be okay and believable, that is something.
    Amazing review, as always. :)
    Veronika @ The Regal Critiques

  4. I have this one and I did put it on the backburner because I knew I was going to need to be prepared for the lying and deceiving when I started it. A lot of reviewers have mentioned that they don't like it, especially because it has to do with her age and it could effect the love interest negatively as well. But I am glad it was still an okay read, that aside.

  5. Hmmm, it sounds interesting but I can't say I'm totally caught up yet. XD I mean, I find it sad that her boyfriend abandoned her because she didn't pay attention to reality. I mean, MADE UP STUFF IS COOLER. heeh. Cheesy is frustrating though. >_<


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