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Shooting the Moon
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Shooting the Moon

3.75  ·  Rating Details ·  3,143 Ratings  ·  504 Reviews

When twelve-year-old Jamie Dexter's brother joins the Army and is sent to Vietnam, Jamie is plum thrilled. She can't wait to get letters from the front lines describing the excitement of real-life combat: the sound of helicopters, the smell of gunpowder, the exhilaration of being right in the t
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Published September 1st 2008 by Recorded Books (first published January 29th 2008)
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Jan 29, 2008 Betsy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I've written about this before, but there's a flush of appreciation a reviewer experiences when they discover a great author that they've never read before. Even if that person has been around for years. In the case of Frances O'Roark Dowell, I'd read her first Phineas L. MacGuire book and I thought it was great. Still, I'd never gotten around to reading some of her better known works for older readers. I'd never picked up Dovey Coe or Chicken Boy or even The Secret Language of Girls. It just ne ...more
Oct 27, 2016 Cheryl rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Beautifully written. Very concise; nothing extra to bog down a young reader. Not too intense on the face of it - but a reader with any imagination will understand the horror. But did I enjoy this historical fiction enough to give it four stars? No, not quite. I only admire and recommend it.
Every single word is spare, perfect, inevitable. It has a brilliant first sentence and a heartbreaking last -- the final scene is a jab to the heart.
A Newbery contender right now, no matter what other gems the year brings us.
Eva Mitnick
Nov 29, 2008 Eva Mitnick rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If Jamie had the good luck to be an 18-year-old boy instead of a 12-year-old girl, she’d enlist in the army so fast, it’d make your head spin. But she isn’t, and so she volunteers at the rec center, keeping things tidy and playing endless games of gin rummy with her friend Private Hollister.

It’s her older brother TJ who chooses to enlist rather than go to college, and he is sent to Vietnam as a combat medic, much to TJ’s excitement and envy. Strangely, their father the Colonel, who is chief of
Jun 09, 2016 Paul rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I thought this book was a solid four because, it had features that really made the past stand out (such as playing rummy). But, the reason why it didn't get a greater rating is because, it only takes place in a couple of places, which made it a little boring. But this was still a decent book. By the title you would think someone will destroy the moon, but, Jamie's brother is just taking pictures of the moon.
Shooting the Moon, by Frances O'Roark Dowell is about a twelve year old girl, Jamie Dexter who grew up in an army family. Her brother enlisted in the Vietnam War instead of going to college. She fantasized about going into battle, but throughout the book, she learned the not so great reality of the army and of combat overall. Much of the book took place in the army recreation center where she volunteered. She made a long lasting friend there, named Private Hollister. She and her older friend pla ...more
Jul 26, 2008 Ryan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I picked up this book because of the title - shooting the moon is a term from the game Hearts and playing Hearts is a Good Father memory. That the book is about fathers and daughters sealed the deal for me.

I suppose its the southern-ness of the author - Frances O'Roark Dowell can almost not be anything but southern - that gives it a cadence similar to To Kill a Mockingbird. Colonel Dexter is perhaps something like Atticus - tall, professional and charming. His daughter, Jamie, clearly adores him
Mar 09, 2012 heidi rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Slight. Not going on my list to buy.

I found this book intensely frustrating because I feel that the author was heading for "spare" and headed right over the cliff into "cryptic allusion". For example, when the title is Shooting the Moon, and the protaganist plays card games, one might expect a reference to that version of shooting the moon, as well as the obvious photography angle. I think this may bother me more as an adult because I see the missed connections. I know why a Vietnamese child mig
Nov 05, 2009 Katy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shooting the Moon takes place during the Vietnam War. The main character, Jamie Dexter, is an army brat whose father is a colonel and brother, TJ, is getting ready to enlist in the army. She believes in the war and would go herself if she was not too young. Jamie is puzzled when her parents do not want TJ to go to Vietnam. They do everything in their power to stop him from going, but it does not work. TJ sends his parents generic letters, but he sends Jamie rolls of film. He encourages her to l ...more
Mar 12, 2008 Christina rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kid-books
Jaime is a 12 and a half year old Army brat when the Vietnam War is being fought. She refers to her dad in the 3rd person, as The Colonel. She loves being in an Army family, and is super excited and proud when her brother enlists- he is sent to Vietnam as a medic. She thinks she knows everything, but boy, does she have a lot to learn. Her brother, TJ is a great photographer and the Colonel wants him to go to college not into the army.
TJ sends Jaime rolls of film to develop, and she is forced to
Jocelyn Garcia
(Spoiler Alert) Have you ever wanted to control of something outside of your reach?In this historical fiction story, this question pertained to a girl named Jamie Dexter. Who had many people she loved be involved with war that showed her to never take any time you have with that person for granted.Overall I think this book was very inspiring. I say this because Jamie is faced with challenges but she stays strong throughout the entire book.
In the book,”Shooting for the Moon,” a girl named Jamie
Hayden Kremer
I thought that this book could be realistic for some people. I gave this book three stars because I thought that the book could have more of a plot to it.

I thought that this book was an easy read because throughout the book there was hardly any new characters or conflicts to introduce. Also, this book had some hard vocabulary, but most of it was very understandable. Lastly, all of the characters were very well described, so the reader could understand what each character was doing and be able to
Shooting at the Moon was way different then what I expected. I thought this book was going to be about. I thought this book was about war and everything else that a war book has. Instead it was about how Jamie lived with her brother who wanted to join the military back during the Vietnam War. Just like Jamie, I too was excited to go and join the military. I wanted to join the armed forces and join the war. But in the middle of the story, Jamie was being told some good reasons for her not to join ...more
Jun 18, 2010 Kirby rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I admire an author who can get us right into a time and place without much set-up. And Frances Dowell does that with this book. Though it seems odd to think of a Vietnam era book as historical fiction,this title is another good addition to that particular list. As an Army brat herself, Frances Dowell brings a credibility to the narration and, even though the father, the Colonel, is a gung-ho soldier, the reader picks up on his pain when his own son, TJ, enlists, well before the main character, J ...more
Feb 02, 2009 Krystal rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Author: Frances O'Roarck Dowell

Genre: First person perspective novel

Publication Info: Atheneum (January 29, 2008)

Reading Level: Fluent; 5th or 6th grade

Topic/Theme: Military hardship/ Friendship/ Relationship with family

Issues Addressed: Relationship with the military and the good and bad things it unravels.

Classroom Uses: Individual Reading, Readers Theatre

Summary: Jamie's father is the Colonel. Her brother is overseas in the military. He sends Jamie pictures that he wants her to develop for
Jaclyn Kruljac
Shooting the Moon is a book about war, love, life and death. Set during the Vietnam war, 12 year old Jamie believes in the war and wishes that she could enlist herself to show her patriotism. She comes from a military family in which her father is a Colonel and her older brother just was enlisted as a medic. Jamie soon realizes after receiving film strips from her brother how life at war is not what she had thought it was. She learns to develop the rolls of film and sees pictures of people riski ...more
May 25, 2015 Katrina rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"You got all the ones I missed."

Man did this book make me cry. I related so well to Jamie. My dad was in the military and was deployed when I was younger, so even though it was a completely different war, I could relate to some of the ways Jamie felt. The thing I loved about this is that in the beginning, Jamie had war so glamorized in her mind, but as she kept developing TJ's pictures, she began to see just what war really looks like.

(view spoiler)
Anastasia L.
Mar 23, 2015 Anastasia L. rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Jamie has always lived the army way and always thought the best thing that could happen is go to war and serve the country but everything just goes down-hill when her brother goes to war and he sends a roll of film and has pictures of the war which she realizes is the truth.and right when everything's going horrible, her friend may be sent off to war and is deterimend to stop it.

This book was just bad.It was dry and boring and annoying. Jamie acted like a obnoxious little kid that never learned
Jul 27, 2008 Diane rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult, fiction, war
A true five star book and a book that should not be limited by being called young adult literature. This is a story about VietNam, and about fathers and sons and daughters.

Jamie's brother goes to Viet Nam and send her film to develop - more and more he sends her pictures of the moon. The moon could be the link between them - in pictures and reality they both see the same moon. But shooting the moon can also mean taking a full out risk - in cards when you shoot the moon you try to get all the ca
Mar 14, 2013 Jaden rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book reminds me of my cousin because he serves in the military. When TJ sent pictures Jamie instead of letters I thought that was weird because he said he was going to write letters to her but at the same time it was cool because it was pictures of what he was dealing with in the war. Jamie doesn't really think war is that exciting anymore. She thinks its sorta not fair because her best friend was going to be forced but ended up not going. I learned that it was scary and it was not fair eit ...more
Feb 01, 2017 Luan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was a great middle grade read that has enough depth to satisfy adult readers too. The story follows a young girl whose brother has recently shipped off to Vietnam. Hers is an army family and this particular war has thrown their family values and ideas of the good fight into disarray. Shooting the Moon takes just a slice of what was happening during the Vietnam war and does a fantastic job of showing the growth and change that happens when life is touched by the uncertainty of what the futur ...more
Dec 18, 2008 Melissa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Quick, first impressions: incredible writing. Tight, lyrical -- almost poetic. Loved the characters, Jamie, her dad The Colonel, especially. I loved her relationship with her brother, TJ. I loved the discoveries she made about the war, and about her life. A moving portrait of how war affects people. Loved it.
Tenille Shade
May 27, 2013 Tenille Shade rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book reminds me of Eli the Good. I found myself thinking about Army Wives while I read this beautiful coming of age story. The war in Vietnam was such a raw time in our history. When people we idolize fall from their pedestals, the world feels unstable. I'm glad her brother came home after two years in a POW camp.
Ilene Colletti
Jun 04, 2010 Ilene Colletti rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
wonderful story about a young girl's interaction with her father and her perceptions of the vietnam war when her brother joins the army. her illusions of both the war and her father are shattered after her brother is sent to vietnam.
Mar 11, 2015 Kimberly rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a really good book if you like reading about the war. Is has a slow start at first and then it gets a lot more interesting.
Apr 19, 2008 Dina rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is a perfect example of why I love being a Children's Librarian. Shooting the Moon needs to be shared. Read it and pass it on.
This is a phenomenal children's book - about a twelve year old coming of age in a time of war. Wonderfully written, and can't wait to discuss it with the girls!

JAMIE THINKS HER FATHER CAN DO ANYTHING....UNTIL THE ONE TIME HE CAN DO NOTHING.When twelve-year-old Jamie Dexter's brother joins the Army and is sent toVietnam, Jamie is plum thrilled. She can't wait to get letters from thefront lines describing the excitement of real-life combat: the sound of helicopters, the s
Katelyn Matthiesen
This was an interesting book and it gives the reader a good idea of what it would be like to have someone that you love go into the Vietnam War. By using the perspective of a young girl, children will be able to relate to her and understand what life might have been like. The only thing that I would have liked would be for the ending to be a little different. The book ends kind of abruptly and we are not really sure what happens.
Elissa Tetrault
This book is about an 11-year old girl who grew up in a home where her father was the Colonel, and she was raised as an "army child" her whole life. Her brother just got sent off to fight in Vietnam, and the book describes how her feelings about war change overtime as it goes from being an exciting event of bravery and courage, to a scary and sad event that is affecting a great amount of families.

I really enjoyed this book. I loved how it was written from the perspective of a child and how their
Viviano Vargas
Aug 23, 2016 Viviano Vargas rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Have you ever known someone that said one thing but deep down meant the other thing well I know someone that does and her name is Jamie a young girl looking up at her father, as a child should she thought her father was like a supper hero but when the war needs men Jamie's brother TJ joins but as he is doing it the Colonel, Jamie father starts to show a whole other side of himself.My overall opinion on this book is amazing it has almost everything you should get out of a book it has drama,actio ...more
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While Frances O'Roark Dowell (Dovey Coe, The Secret Language of Girls, Trouble the Water) is best known for her award-winning novels, she also hosts the popular "Off-Kilter Quilt" podcast, where she talks about her latest quilt projects with friends and fellow quilters around the globe. Her own little corner of the globe is Durham, North Carolina, where she lives with her husband, two sons, and a ...more
More about Frances O'Roark Dowell...

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“He was a big talker, someone who liked words for words' sake, the sound of them, the way you can pile them up in your mouth and make a poem if you speill them out the right way.
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