My daughter was recently given a copy of Midnight at Moonstone and it turned out to be such a lovely, gentle yet fun story for tweens that we wanted to write a review about it. Nothing scary, sinister or spooky (which does not go down well with my daughter) but instead it is a fun story about a 12-year-old girl who discovers the period mannequins at her grandfather’s museum actually have a night life of their own.
Kit (the 12-year-old) feels like she does not fit in with her family – he dad is a famous Scientist and her older siblings are bright and very succesful yet Kit just failed the entrance exam to a fancy school and her father is pushing her to study harder. While her dad is travelling she runs away to her grandfather’s costume museum but even there her grandfather is not initially warm and welcoming.
However Kit soon discovers that the museums mannequins come to life in the evenings and that her mother (who passed away when she was very young) used to be friends with the mannequins and helped to mend them and look after them. So she hatches a plan to save the museum. (There are also a few other twists but I don’t want to give everything away).
I really loved this message of the story – a young girl whose strengths were not the same as her family – she was artistic and they were scientific yet her strengths in the end are what saves the museum. I also liked the fact that one of the mannequins (Fenella) has selective mutism, yet it was the mannequin that was the most caring and helpful and eventually become very close friends with Kit. Another powerful message that the author managed to beautifully weave into the story.
My daughter loved the whole idea that the mannequins would come to life and that each one was so unique with a their own distinct personalities. She loved that there was this magical element to the story but there was no darkness to the magic. She also enjoyed the fact that Kit saved the day and as a result her family stopped pushing her to be more like them.
We both think the story is well written and makes a lovely heart warming book with just a touch of magic and a slight mention of History (the fact the mannequins were dressed in period costumes). So for my daughter a complete win.
We were given this copy of Midnight at Moonstone by Oxford University Press. You can also get it from Amazon here – Midnight at Moonstone
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