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Beneath a Meth Moon

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3.63 of 5 stars 3.63  ·  rating details  ·  2,575 ratings  ·  560 reviews
A stunning new novel from threetime Newbery Honor–winning
author Jacqueline Woodson.

Laurel Daneau has moved on to a new life, in a new town, but inside she’s still reeling from the loss of her beloved mother and grandmother after Hurricane Katrina washed away their home. Laurel’s new life is going well, with a new best friend, a place on the cheerleading squad and T-Boom,
...more
Hardcover, 182 pages
Published February 2nd 2012 by Nancy Paulsen Books
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Newbery 2013
22nd out of 116 books — 1,132 voters
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Book Bracketology 2012
8th out of 39 books — 16 voters


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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Karen Ball
Teaching middle school, I'm always a little edgy about ordering substance abuse related fiction. This one was a stellar purchase, though. Laurel has lost her beloved mother and grandmother who were killed during Hurricane Katrina because her grandmother refused to leave her coastal Mississippi home. Laurel's father moves the family to central Iowa, where they try to pick up the pieces. Starting a new high school is stressful enough, but Laurel seems to find a place with the cheerleading squad, h ...more
Richelle
Jul 06, 2012 Richelle rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: ya
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mary Farrell
Fabulous book! Jacqueline Woodson is an amazing writer. This is not just a book about meth addiction. This is not just a book about the tragedy of Hurricane Katrina. The author combines them both with breathtaking writing. I highly recommend it!
Eileen Granfors
I saw the review for "Beneath a Meth Moon" in the Sunday LA Times, bought the book on a Monday and finished the book on a Tuesday the same week. What a rush from the words of the gifted author, Jacqueline Woodson.

The book is presented in short chapters, giving the feeling of the jumpiness meth induces in its users. The main character, Laurel, calls meth "the moon," because it takes her over the moon beyond her troubles. After losing loved ones in a flood, she thinks she can go on, for she has a
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Kelly
This left me disappointed, given the heavy topics dealt with. It was too slight. Laurel lost her mother and her grandmother in Katrina, and when she, her father, and baby brother move up north, she finds herself falling for a boy who leads her to meth.

While it was sad, I didn't feel like there was much character development, and I found the treatment of the subject matter didn't give it the sort of impact it should have had. This is a really stripped down story and Woodson writes it well, but i
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Linda Lipko
This is an author who does not disappoint. An award winning Newbery and Coretta Scott King recipient, this latest book packs a wallop.

When 15 year old Laurel Daneua moves to a new area with her father and little brother after her mother and grandmother were killed in Mississippi during Hurricane Katrina, despite the incredible grief and heartache,the family valiantly tries to pick up the pieces and start again.

Finding a new friend who introduces her to meth quickly equates to a life swirling int
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Jackie Miller
Since I've started combing the depths of YA fiction I haven't yet read a drug/addiction/disorder book. This is my first, so I'm kind of a newbie. But I have to say that this book is pretty powerful. I've never struggled with a serious addiction, but I've seen enough people succumb to it. One thing I've noticed that holds true across the board is that addiction is the symptom of a different problem or hurt. Although this is pretty dark subject, the book is written with a hopeful tone.

This book sh
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Mark
"I celebrated my fifteenth birthday sitting in the rain begging for money. I was living in Donnersville by then. Nights inside that room in back of the hardware store, days walking and begging for money. Always Mama's voice inside my head whispering, "Daneaus don't lie, and they don't steal," so loud and hard that a part of me wanted to scream, "Then I'm not a Daneau anymore!" But scared always that the voice would go away, that her hand on my back, when I was shaking and sick with the need for ...more
Lisa Campbell
Lisa Campbell
Contemporary Realistic Fiction
This is the story of Laurel Daneau, hurricane Katrina survivor, cheerleader, best friend and meth addict. Hurricane Katrina took the lives of her mother and grandmother and Laurel’s father moves the family from Mississippi to Iowa. Instantly popular, Laurel attracts the eye of T-Boom, co-captain of the basketball team. T-Boom introduces Laurel to ‘moon’ and she is immediately in its grip. Laurel descends to living in the streets and begging for money. E
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Claudia
I love Woodson's poetry and often recognized lyricism in this book about the horrors of meth addiction. Laurel has already suffered so much...the loss of her beloved grandmother, her mother, and her home. She and her father and brother move to rural Iowa from coastal Mississippi. I can understand Laurel's culture shock, but things seem to be going so well...when she falls for the start basketball player and follows him into regular meth use.

Woodson doesn't honey-coat the effects of addiction, or
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Erin
Nov 10, 2011 Erin rated it 2 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2011, ya
There's a line in this very book that might capture my feelings exactly: "I like to read. . . . A hundred and ten books in my house and counting. I read all of them. Some sucked, but I kept reading, hoping they'd turn good at some point. They didn't though. But you don't give up on something—"

I read this book in about two hours, max. It's fairly insubstantial. I will say that for a title that gives it all away it's not as bleak as I'd been imagining, and all told nothing bad seems to really happ
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Karlan
Mar 25, 2012 Karlan rated it 5 of 5 stars
Shelves: ya, adult
This poetic novel is a marvelous look at the suffering of a lovely young girl who quickly becomes addicted to meth. After the loss of her mother and grandmother in a hurricane, she seems to be doing well two years later until a boyfriend gives her the drug. The writing here is beautiful and captures her descent powerfully.
Jo
Feb 17, 2012 Jo marked it as to-read
Shelves: need
Totally read the author as Jacqueline Wilson and thought "Jeez, she's branching out a bit."
Edward Sullivan
A heartbreaking but hopeful story told in exquisite prose.
Amy
Laurel, her dad, and her 3-month-old baby brother escape Pass Christian, MS just before Hurricane Katrina hits. Her grandmother refuses to leave and her mother decides to stay with her grandmother. As a result, they are killed. After a move to Galilee, IA, Laurel seems to be making a fresh start. She makes a best friend, Kaylee, who is a cheerleader and soon Laurel has joined the squad too. It's through cheering that Laurel meets T-Boom, the basketball team's star player. And it's because of T-B ...more
Kathrina
I've been seeking out some titles that might appeal to juvenile offenders or that horribly-named demographic -- "at-risk" teenagers -- that concern characters in difficult, "urban" situations but are not graphically violent, offensive or sexual. It's hard to even say that this book is "urban", since it takes place in small-town Iowa. I don't know a better word -- street lit? Regardless, Woodson is kind of the queen of teen street. Most junior and high school teachers rely on her works for their ...more
Em (Love YA Lit)
Em's Review: Laurel Daneau has experienced great loss. At a young age she lost her mother and her grandmother to a devastating storm. She lost her home and a big chunk of her heart. A few years later, Laurel and her family (father and brother) move to Iowa hoping to make a fresh start. She joins the cheerleading squad, makes a new best friend, and falls for basketball co-captain T-Boom. Things are looking up, at least from the outside, until T-Boom introduces Laurel to meth (which she calls moon ...more
Jordan Croom
Beneath a Meth Moon tells the story of a young woman named Laurel Daneau. Her and her family were forced to leave their coastal Mississippi home town when Hurricane Katrina washed away their home and broke their family. Laurel's Mother and grandmother were both killed by the hurricane. Now, after relocating homes and towns, Laurel struggles to fit in. She finds one really close friend, but her relationship with that friend quickly gets pushed to the side when she meets her football star boyfrie ...more
Alyse Erickson
This was a well-done book, an interesting story told in a creative and lyrical way. The storytelling hops back and forth within the chronology of Laurel's tale, which feels realistic, and appropriate for a teenage narrator who is supposed to be writing the story, her elegy, herself. Beneath a Meth Moon is a beautifully written novel about the horrors of meth addiction. Woodson expertly floats the reader through each short chapter as 15-year-old Laurel floats through her addiction. As a child of ...more
Brady Stevens
Dec 09, 2014 Brady Stevens added it
Shelves: 307
This book is at a higher reading level then a children's story, this book is would be recommended to young adolescents like 12 and up. The genre of this book is realistic fiction for that the story of Laurel is not true it has true events and actions that could have taken place. The story is about Laurel going through life after the death of her mother and grandmother. She moves to a new town where she fits in rather well and gets a new boyfriend who introduces her to meth. This is where she sta ...more
Marybeth Batie
This young adult fiction book got my attention quickly. A young girl, Laurel, gets hooked onto the addictive drug meth and her life goes in a whirlwind. The theme of this book is drug use, loss, and the importance of family. This upper level reading book would be a good addition to the health class taken in middle or high school because of its focus on the affects of hard drugs. Two activities for this book could be an essay on the before and after version of Laurel and how meth changed her, and ...more
Katie Levin
Underneath a meth moon is about a young fifteen year old named Lauren. She has gone through many challenges in her life including losing her Mom and grandma through hurricane Katrina. This leaves Lauren lost and not sure where to turn to. The story is told of her struggles with her addiction to meth and is very realistic. I think that it was a great read and left me with a little insight of how the body works when addicted to hard substances. I would recommend this book to and older age because ...more
Madison Young
Beneath a Meth Moon tells the story of a fifteen year old girl named Laurel who becomes addicted to meth, or “moon”, after she tries it one time with a crush. Laurel lived a harsh life, including having to move away from her hometown and losing her mother and grandmother in a devastating flood. The text of this story was confusing at times and required a reader to pay close attention. The plot shifted from past to present very constantly and this may be hard for younger readers to detect. I did ...more
Shibei
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Beth Dailey Kenneth
Too short for this topic. And calling it "moon?" Are you trying to make it sound dreamlike and sweet?

We see main character, Laurel, at 15 years old. She's survived Hurricane Katrina and the loss of her mother and grandmother to the storm. She, her father and baby brother move around to wherever a job is. Now Laurel is living in Iowa and a cheerleader. She is dating the basketball star, T-Boom. T-Boom gives her her first taste of "the moon." Laurel quickly starts to rely on the "moon" to take her
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Britta
This book was not what I was hoping for, to say the least. I understood where the writer was coming from in terms of the writing style, but I found it confusing and not as powerful as possible with such a huge subject.


In essence, the novel is the story of Laurel had become addicted to Meth. This is a huge topic and very important, yet the impact of it on Laurel's life is not portrayed in a way that made me care. The story is told from Laurel's point of view; memories are told in fragments (sinc
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Laura
3.5 stars

Although i've never had problems with addiction, I have known people that have struggled with these issues, and the mind of an addict is something that truely intrigues me. This story focuses on the demise of Laurel, who after losing her monther and grandmother during Hurricane Katrina, moves to a new town, and meets T-Boom the star basketball player who has eyes for only Laurel, but also has eyes for the moon, aka meth.

Laurel gets caught up in the moon and quickly falls subject to a se
...more
Barbara
Losses can sideswipe us even years after they occur. Even as we mourn the loss of loved ones and start to recover, we still miss them, often in unexpected ways. This deeply affecting novel deals with losses on several levels. It grabs readers' attention immediately with the main character still struggling with her addiction to meth. Laurel Daneau has moved with her family from Pass Christian, Mississippi to a small town in Iowa where she continues to heal after the devastating loss of her mother ...more
Rochelle
After Hurricane Katrina takes her mama and grandma away forever, her father moves Laurel and her brother away from Mississippi for a fresh start in a small town called Galilee. She becomes a cheerleader and meets T-Boom, a hot basketball player who introduces her to meth. Shortly after trying it, she's hooked and leaves home for life on the streets, begging for money to buy drugs. She meets a graffiti artist, Moses, who befriends her and uses his kindness to help her out of the darkness before h ...more
Miss_b
I liked this book. I didn't find it overly didactic and although I've read a fair number of books with the main conflict being drug addiction, I've not read any specifically dealing with a teen using crystal meth. Knowing people from my past who have been addicted to meth, as well as relationships with people who are recovering addicts (other substances), it appeared to be pretty accurate in its portrayal, in a skimming the surface type of way. It doesn't deal with the addiction with the intensi ...more
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74640
I used to say I’d be a teacher or a lawyer or a hairdresser when I grew up but even as I said these things, I knew what made me happiest was writing.

I wrote on everything and everywhere. I remember my uncle catching me writing my name in graffiti on the side of a building. (It was not pretty for me when my mother found out.) I wrote on paper bags and my shoes and denim binders. I chalked stories a
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