I was really excited to pick this book up after loving Golden Boys Beware: A Novel, but although there are a lot of common themes in each of the books, I just didn't fall for I Am Margaret Moore in the same way. I think this has a lot to do with where I currently am in my life, and what kind of things I'm looking for. I think if I was in my later teens, I would have been really been swept up with the reveal and the ending, but as an adult in my late 20's, I'm just looking for something that reads a little faster and with a little more hope.
I had trouble with the pacing: I felt like the first third of the book was a bit too slow. The lyrical writing in the book also added to the slow feeling in my opinion, as although Capin writes beautiful sentences and descriptions (which I do love), I felt like certain blocks of text were repeated too often.
What I liked so much about Golden Boys Beware was that terrible things happened to Jade, but she was able to respond and take a lot of action with her friends. So much of this book is waiting for Margaret to tell us the entire story of the past, and once that's finished, you realize that Margaret is just in a state that will make it very difficult to change her situation much. It was just difficult for me to read this book when I felt like nothing much could be done. Themes and relationships that I had enjoyed in Golden Boys Beware did become more common in the end, allowing me to see a clear connection between the two and appreciate Margaret Moore and her friends. But I just felt like there was a big lack of hope and also a lack of agency for most of this book than what I remember feeling for the characters in in GBB. I wouldn't recommend I am Margaret Moore if you're feeling blue or in a funk or anything -- it's pretty brutal.
Also, I don't know anything about boats, and I don't think enough boat/naval detail/explanation was given in the book, so it was difficult for me to visualize some scenes. And I wish that more time had been spent talking about the camp set up because I did not understand the difference between a third year and a first year summer for most of the book and that made things really confusing especially with the timeline hopping all around.
I Am Margaret Moore by Hannah Capin is a YA thriller in a similar style to We Were Liars by E. Lockhart. (if that's a book you have strong opinions about, I'd expect a similar reaction to I Am Margaret Moore) It seems to be one you either love or hate, but personally I loved it. I found it haunting, tragic and beautifully written. I enjoyed it just as much as Foul is Fair, though the main characters are starkly different personalities. Margaret Moore left me eager to read more from Hannah Capin.
The lyrical writing ruined this book for me. It was too complex to enjoy, and I was really disappointed with this book.
This book was a little difficult for me to follow at first but then it got more interesting. I really liked the short little chapters that it had. It kind of reminded me of “We Were Liars” but also poetry at the same time? I thought this story was beautiful and I will be buying the physical copy when it comes out.
Although I Am Margaret Moore had its moments, ultimately it tested my patience and I found the vagueness of it to be too frustrating. However, the target readership mid-teenage girls, may well enjoy it considerably more and be intrigued by the many references to "the boy" and the many occasions in which Margaret Moore kisses him. Not much of this plot seemed to go anywhere and the dreamlike plot, written almost like poetry, failed to captivate like the author probably hoped. It also moved over more than one summer timeline and I struggled to tell them apart, after about fifty pages everything became very samey. Obviously we're following a type of stream of consciousness, but I'm sure many teen readers will be turned off by it, although I suppose it is worth hanging around for the ending.
Thank you NetGalley and Hannah Capin for the opportunity to read the eARC of I am Margaret Moore!
Well... I really tried to get into this book. I loved the summary but once I started, I just couldn't seem to get grabbed by the plot. It felt flat and forced. I couldn't be pulled in enough to give it my full attention. The characters did not sound interesting and I was not invested into their stories unfortunately.
I will post my review on Netgalley, Goodreads, Amazon, Barnes and Noble and Google play.
This book is great! Would definitely recommend. Thanks so much to NetGalley and the publisher for the ARC.
Kind of bummed....I think I would have absolutely loved this book if not for prose style writing. I've seen others say this dreamlike writing made the book all the blue better for them, unfortunately not so with me. The book is a thriller/mystery focusing on 4 girls at a camp, which is right up my alley. I would give four stars for the (I took off one because I saw the plot twist coming a mile away) and two stars for the actual writing. Just because this isn't particularly my cup of tea, doesn't mean that I wouldn't recommend it to others.
Thank you to the publisher and that galley for an arc in exchange for an honest review.
DNF @ 37%
Despite the many elements of the premise that I love — summer camp, sisterhood, secrets of the past coming to bear on the present — ultimately the prose style overshadows everything else and keeps me from really getting immersed. It's not <i>bad</i>, just very stream-of-consciousness, circuitous and somewhat repetitive, with revelations and flashbacks rationed out gradually to build on each other; the present tense is more atmospheric than action-packed. There's a strange juxtaposition where it seems like the narrative is meant to have universal resonance, but at the same time Marshall Summer Naval School is something special, and so the novel as a whole is caught between the two.
I do think this will appeal to many readers, but it's just not for me.
The writing was a little too lyrical for me at times. It was kind of confusing. I guessed the twist 5% in to the book, I'm not sure it was supposed to be that obvious.
I wanted to like this book, but the first half was so confusing with the constant jumping from summers. The naval terminology was hard to keep straight. The second half is where everything starts to come together and it becomes repetitive and honestly after the reveal, I think the story should have ended.
Favorite quote that I hope makes it into the final copy.
"I believe in monsters with wide smiles, beautiful and bright, that live in grand old Victorians; that push girls into the mud; that take our voices and tell us what we are."
“I am a mad girl who walks the lakeshore in mud up to my ankles. I swim in moonlight; I float above that deepest place and do not fear the things beneath. I wake when the sun comes up and the cannon fires and I am sleeping here on the water, and the mist is all around me, and everything is still, and I am Medusa and all the world is stone.”
I absolutely LOVED Foul is Fair (seriously everyone needs to read it if you love a good Macbeth retelling and lots of blood and revenge). Now, with I Am Margaret Moore, Hannah Capin continues to grow with her stories and the tales she spins. I Am Margaret Moore is poetic, lyrical, haunting and held deep with sorrow but it’s also more than that; it’s about sisterhood between best friends who’d do anything for each other.
I’ll repeat what others have said in that this book, especially the writing, will not be for everyone but the prose just so happens to be my kind of favorite. It’s like reading a fever-dream. After I finished reading, I felt like I was floating. I can’t wait to see what Hannah Capin has in store for us next.
This book is described as lyrical, however, it often borders on verse. The repetitive nature of this writing felt mind-numbing, at times, and frustrating at others. The twist of this book is one of the more interesting things that happens- and even our characters seem undeterred by it. This was strange, considering the entire plot relies on this twist. The world-building was fantastic, and I would have enjoyed an actual thriller written in prose in this world. However, this felt more like a contemporary in verse dressed up as a thriller labeled lyrical.
There could have been so much more to this story. The writing style took those opportunities away.
Full review October 4th, 2021
Not the typical genre I read but this was very enjoyable. It was well written and the characters were likable. I will definitely look for more by this author.
Thanks to publisher and NetGalley for this ARC.
Pub Date:10/12/21. Highly recommend
Thank you to St. Martin's Press and NetGalley for this ARC in exchange for an honest review!
I am Margaret Moore by Hannah Capin is a creepy YA thriller with twists and turns I never saw coming. When I saw those words in the description, I immediately added this book to my TBR list. I love YA books and I love thrillers, so why not blend the two genres and get something cool and ground-breaking? I was so excited to be approved to review this ARC that I was jumping up and down. Thank you again to the publisher for this opportunity!
The story revolves around five girls, friends at the Marshall Naval School, an elite summer camp by the seaside. They meet up every summer. This summer, however, a mysterious incident plagues the students. Rumors start springing up that Margaret is to blame. To solve the mystery, she will have to go into the depths of her mind and remember what actually happened last summer. This book seriously has everything: a seaside setting, camp traditions, and mysteries galore.
Here is an excerpt from an opening chapter that describes the school:
"Here we are only Marshall girls. We live behind glass and gray wood on green lawns. The forest hems us to the shore of Lake Nanweshmot; the forest keeps us safe away from the world. Here they push us until we break and heal and break again. We are everything and everything is ours."
And here is an excerpt from Margaret's point of view introducing her friends:
"One from last June, before we turned tan and sunbleached. Flor and Nisreen, Rose and me, fingertips clutching into each other’s arms. Laughing and right.
When they are unpacked they will come out to me, and we will be together again, and it will be our summer: this is what I hope with all my life.
I sit in the crook of our sycamore and I wait for them.
I need them back. We need us back.
Everything depends on it."
Overall, I am Margaret Moore is an exceptional YA novel that blends social commentary with mystery. This book is so innovative though that it's hard to find other books to compare it to. If you enjoyed the twists in We Were Liars or One Of Us is Lying but wished they were slightly more creepy, then this book is for you! If you are intrigued by the quotes above or if you're a fan of the YA and thriller genres, then you won't regret checking out this book when it comes out in October!
Thank you to #NetGalley and Wednsday Books. I wanted to love this one. I loved the cover and I wanted to love the book just as much as the cover. But for whatever reason, I didn't love it. I liked it don't get me wrong, but I wanted to LOVE it.
Ok so I didn't love it. I think I established that much so far. The story itself was attention grabbing for me and I liked the paranormal that was mixed into this. As with Foul is Fair, I struggled a little with Capin's writing style. She really is one of those love it or leave it kind of writers but I'm more along the lines of I like it. The first half was a little on the slower side for me. Still good but once I hit the second half of the book, it picked up. Capin still creates fantastic characters who I like and related to. I just wish I connected with the book a little bit more.
I first fell in love with Hannah Capin’s writing when I read Foul is Fair. There’s just something poetic and rhythmic to her writing that I just want to keep reading. I Am Margaret Moore is no different.
The story follows a girl named Margaret, who spends her summers at Marshall Naval School. She’s part of a group of girls who are in Deck Five, and develop an unbreakable sister bond. The story jumps back and forth between past and present. The story is raw and beautiful. There’s so much that is said in this story without actually being said. I highly recommend this story if you love strong and fearless girls who refuse to be silenced by men.
I received an advanced copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.
Deadly schools? Even deadlier secrets? The filthy rich being even dirtier in their evilness?
I went into this book knowing what it was and the cliche parallels the book drew in the sand were basic and sigh worthy.
The writing is lyrical and haunting and the authors use of words reminiscent of poetry and song. It may have been the only thing that redeemed the book for me and kept me reading.
Perhaps if there weren’t so many other books with this same plot I would have lived it more.
I Am Margaret Moore is a paranormal thriller unlike any I've ever read before. We follow Mar, or Margaret, and her three friends: Flor, Nisreen, and Rose in their time at Marshall. A navy-esque summer camp where their love for each other is limitless, where everything is perfect, and where they can be their true selves — until something goes terribly wrong.
As this is written, there isn't much I can tell you about the plot that isn't a spoiler. All we know is that Margaret is deeply depressed, her thoughts and feelings are a constant spiral. She feels empty and lost, clinging to her girls, her friends, the true loves of her life. Last summer, there was a boy. And something within that spiral of events led Margaret Moore to shame, and Deck Five to be sent home early.
This book is like trying to wade through a dream. It's written near in prose, deeply poetic, full of symbolism and repetition. It is not a style that everyone is going to enjoy or understand. I, personally, found the repetitive nature almost maddening to get through at times, no matter how beautiful the writing actually was. Things start to pick up about 60% in, but it is still a long trek to the point and the ending swallowed me up so quickly I almost didn't realize what had happened. I was *satisfied* with the events that folded out, I just wish it hadn't felt like staring into the sun to get there.
I so desperately wanted more backstory on the other girls. I wanted to know how they became friends, how Flor and Nisreen fell in love, what made their loyalty to each other so deep and true and all-consuming. Their friendship was my favorite part of the book. It is almost obsessive, but not suffocating. They know that who they are at camp cannot be who they are in real life, they understand they have responsibilities to handle once they leave, but their love for each other is as deep and true as anything to exist and it was a beautiful thing to behold.
If you want to enjoy a book that is part daydream, part nightmare, part poem—check this book out on 12 October 2021. It is an experience I'm unlikely to forget.
*My thanks to Netgalley and the Publisher for gifting me with an ARC in exchange for an honest review.*
Nothing gets me more than an unlikeable narrative with lyrical proses every once in a while. This reminded me of Foul is Fair due to the whole diving into the story blinded with no idea what really is happening. But, on the other hand, this book is entirely it's own.
Margaret Moore is a questionable heroine. We get the gist that something really went wrong but her narrative on how it progresses gets very confusing at times. I think that is what got me more into this book. There's a lot of deception happening and it makes me want to uncover it more. I can't tell much without spoiling but if I were to describe this in one word, it would be scrumptious. Lovers of the thriller genre will surely enjoy this.