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Naming the Stars

2.85  ·  Rating details ·  34 Ratings  ·  27 Reviews
16-year-old Mary-Louise comes home from swimming lessons one day to find she is absent from family photographs, her bedroom has turned into a linen closet, and all of her possessions have disappeared. More troubling, her family goes on as if she never existed. The only person in town who can actually see her is a boy she calls Fish, a YMCA swimming instructor, but Fish is ...more
Paperback, 152 pages
Published September 5th 2016 by Curiosity Quills Press (first published 2016)
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Rating details
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Aug 30, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
Mary-Louise one morning finds her entire family seems to be ignoring her. Taking a look around the house there's no evidence of her ever being even in the family but it's really disturbing to talk directly to her parents and them act like she doesn't even exist.

Not knowing what to do Mary-Louise finds herself at the police station but even gets ignored by the policeman on duty. Soon though Mary-Louise runs into a boy name Fish who seems to be the only one who can actually see her. The thing is
I struggled to finish this book, even though the story itself is interesting, the characters are fine, and the writing style is great too. It was a little jumbled up, but you reread the paragraph and you're back to following the story. Until it started dragging on... I don't know why, I don't know if it was intentional. The beginning was brilliant, but somewhere past the middle it started defining all structure that it was previously set, and messing with the impression I previously had.
Oct 17, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
+Received a copy from the author in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!

Didn't really have any expectations set up... I was surprised by how short the book was.

THE WORLD: Our normal world with some sort of paranormal or extrasensory twist to it.

CHARACTERS: The main character is Mary-Louise Moura, a sixteen year old girl who struggles to swim (apparently she's very bad at it) and has some confidence issues with her appearance since she think she's ugly and has a near uni-brow... one day M
Ashleigh (a frolic through fiction)
Originally posted on A Frolic Through Fiction

*I received this book in exchange for an honest review

I always find it hard to write reviews for books I read so quickly. It’s almost as if I didn’t get enough time with it, as if I didn’t pause long enough to think critically. But here’s to trying.

I’m actually really glad this was such a short read. It was just what I needed.

I enjoyed this book, but I definitely didn’t love it. It was quick and easy, you don’t have to think particularly hard about
Read all my reviews on

Imagine: you come home one day and all evidence of your existence has been removed. Even more so, the rest of your family completely ignores you and pretend you don't exist. It happens to Mary-Louise, who even before her mysterious disappearance often felt invisible.

The first part of the book I thought was pretty good, although I thought Mary-Louise being so insecure was pushed a little bit too much. When stranger things start to happen
Apr 05, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Rating: 1/5
(I received a free copy from the publisher, Curiosity Quills Press, via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.)
***Minor spoilers***

Everything is going normally for Mary-Louise until all of a sudden it just isn't. On her way home from finally passing her swim test, she comes home and everything is different. The spot for her keys isn't there anymore. Her parents can't hear her, and seem to have no memory of her whatsoever - in fact, it turns out nobody can hear her at all, except
*This book was provided via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review*

This book started off promising and the first half of the book was well-written and very intriguing. The second half of the book, however, seemed to drag on a bit and the ending seemed a bit rushed, confusing and inconclusive. Throughout the book the exact situation Mary-Louise found herself in wasn't really explained and I hoped this would be amended at the ending if the book. The author, however, skipped around the truth an
Sarah E.
Apr 18, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I was gifted an ebook via Netgalley.
The premise of this book sounded fascinating when I requested it. The beginning was a little odd and honestly, the voice it's written in is a little pretentious at times. It started to pick up about 30% through and I thought that maybe I had been wrong in the beginning. But it was only good for a little bit before disappointing me again. Once Mary-Louise (view spoiler), the story went off the rails. It was lik
I just do not get this story. At all. I read a lot of fantasy and sci-fi; I especially like all of those far out concepts like time travel, quantum flux, temporal anomalies and the like. But this book just did not make any sense to me at all. There was so much back and forth, mixing and matching, shifting around, of characters and times and places, that it all just made me dizzy. I felt like I was reading at least three different stories that wanted to make a coherent plot all fit together, but ...more
Lisa Mandina
Jun 01, 2016 rated it liked it
Not a huge fan. It was okay, but didn't keep my interest that well. The ending was good enough for the most part. I only finished because I felt like I might have requested it from a publisher? Not sure. You can check out my full review on Lisa Loves Literature.
Stephanie A.
I really had no idea what was going on for most of it, but I stayed because the pretty descriptions of old clothing and mysterious photographs from the 1920s in a secondhand shop were enough to distract me while I read in hopeful pursuit of a reasonable explanation. I was doubly intrigued when the present-day girl's stuff showed up in boxes at the store. And I was most tickled to find a real, factual explanation for everything at the end that did not negate the pleasure of the dreamy, magical re ...more
Jun 02, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this! I loved the main characters and how the book was basically about them discovering themselves and learning to let go of the past. The only downside is that due to the nature of the book, parts were really confusing, at some places I was so confused trying to work out what was happening that it took away from the enjoyment of reading it.
Oct 10, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was an interesting read and I think it would be a great book for reluctant teen readers. It's a shorter story but the premise is engaging for both male and female readers. I think both the guy and girl characters would have the kids thinking "they're just like me" I also think author Susan Koefod has captured their frustration and angst about life perfectly. I've never read Ms Koefod before but I'll look to see what else she has written and see what other themes she presents for readers.
» Review can also be found on Orchids & Amethysts.

Title: Naming the Stars
Author: Susan Koefod
Rating: 2/5

Thanks to NetGalley and Curiosity Quills Press for letting me receive a digital copy of this book.

16-year-old Mary-Louise comes home from swimming lessons one day to find she is absent from family photographs, her bedroom has turned into a linen closet, and all of her possessions have disappeared. More troubling, her family goes on as if she never existed. The only person in town who can a
Roberta R. (Offbeat YA)
Rated 2.5 really.

Excerpt from my review - originally published at Offbeat YA.

Pros: Interesting premise. Doesn't rely on stereotypes. Tries to convey a message about self-image and self-esteem.
Cons: Execution is a bit confusing and not always consistent. Characters are not explored to the fullest.
Will appeal to: Those who like coming-of-age stories with an underlying mystery and without romantic undertones.

First off...DISCLAIMER: I received this novel from Curiosity Quills in exchange for an hon
Olivia Farr
3.5 stars

"Naming the stars" is an odd, fast-paced book with elements of magical realism. Mary-Louise has always defined herself by her name and her appearance, taking care to use her name as her label of existence. One day, she returns home from swimming to learn that she has never existed and has been wiped from her things to her family's memories and even to her visibility. Neither her parents, her brother, nor the police can see her. She finds a boy whom she calls Fish (because he teaches the
Tanya Grech Welden
It was immediately apparent to me that Koefod knows how to write. In many ways this has that ephemeral kind of language that I love to see. Alas, it just didn't do it for me. Having read over half the book I still found myself asking "where is she going with this?" Admittedly, sometimes this can be a good thing, a feeling that can only be sated by me actually finishing the book. In this case it was asked out of boredom. I really tried to connect with the characters and the story, it just didn't ...more
Oct 07, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Age Recommended: 11 and up

The characters in this book were very well developed, and I enjoyed reading the book until the last few pages, where I felt that in a rush to end the book and wrap it up, the author made it too confusing.



Mary Louisa Moura has disappeared. Her parents have no recollection of her, her possessions are all gone, and nobody can see her. Mary is terrified, desperate, and alone, with nobody to go to. Until Fi
Samantha Sim
Aug 31, 2016 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: arc
So... I've put off reviewing this book for quite some time now, because I've been trying to figure out just what the hell I've read. And honestly? I have no idea.

Not gonna lie, I was pretty intrigued by the idea behind the book at first. It's about a girl who wakes up one day to find out that the world is going on without her. All traces of her existence are gone and the only person who can see her is a boy from her swimming class. It sounded so interesting but sadly it kinda fell flat for me.
Jantine Kampes
Sep 17, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
I received a free copy through Netgalley, in return for an honest review.

3,5 stars
This book was an easy read for the most part. Koefod wrote to the point, while using speaking images of Marie-Louise's world, and how it became not her world anymore. The storyline was interesting, and while it was confusing at some moments, that somehow added to the story. It needed to be confusing. The characters were great and relatable.

In the end, the story seemed too hurried though. I would've liked it more ro
Toni House
Sep 05, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Naming The Stars
16- Year old Mary Louise comes home from swimming practice one day to find that her family are living their lives as if she was never part of the family. They can not see her or hear her and the only person that can is Fish a boy with a mysterious past. One that he wants no one to know about or to find out about. Fish internal struggle to keep his secret and wanting to help Mary-Louise. Will he risk everything to help this troubled girl?
It is a coming of age story. One that portr
Oct 22, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Naming the Stars is a magical read. It begins when main character Mary-Louise arrives home after swimming lessons to discover she's disappeared from her life. She finds she's invisible to everyone except for one boy, who she knows as Fish. The pair work together (mostly well) as they try to riddle out the mystery of Mary-Louise's existence (or not). What results is a journey of self-exploration, oftentimes winding and unpredictable. Towards the middle of the book, things get very muddled, reflec ...more
Sep 01, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I received a free copy in exchange for an honest review by NetGalley.

This book was confusing as HECK, I'm not going to lie. But did it keep me intrigued? YES!
The plot seemed interesting, so i thought why not? I didn't regret it. The characters were less developed than I prefer, but it was ok with the length of the book (short and to the point, which is how I like it most of the time). And the end... Woah, I didn't expect that!

There wasn't much romance in this one, so romantics like me may not li
CrazyCat (Alex)
To be honest I had a hard time keep reading when I hit about the middle of the book. I had no clue what was happening and where the story was going. I think the idea of the story was great, We all have thought about what makes me, me. And what defines a human, a name, your looks? But the writing didn't do it for me. There were too many names and places and back and forth, I struggled with all of it and had to stop reading a lot. I pushed through the book and overall it was an o.k. read.

Sep 04, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Naming The Stars wasn’t as good as the synopsis made it sound. The mystery (and come to think of it, the anticipation of uncovering said mystery) just wasn’t there and the majority of the book was just confusing to me to be honest.

I started getting into it towards the end but by then it was too late, there was about half an hour left in the book and as good as the book got it wasn’t enough to make me forget how underwhelmed the rest of the book had left me.

Naming the Stars has a beautiful cover
Carol Anne
Nov 12, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read the book when ever I had a couple minutes , which explains why it took me so long to read it. The characters are memorable, such that it was easy for me to recall what had taken place since I last picked up the book. The only part that was really confusing for me was the re-introduction of the little brother into the story. Other than that, it was a captivating exploration of what ifs -- what if I was invisible? what if I never was? what if who I think I am isn't who I really am.
Serena W. Sorrell
Received from NetGalley.

DNF at 15%. I found the narrator's voice to be incongruous with the information we know about her. Very seldom does 1st person work well and unfortunately this is one of those instances.

The narration and world building were lacking and never painted an interesting enough picture to hook me to the story.
Susan Koefod
Sep 04, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)  ·  review of another edition
Art Roberts
rated it liked it
Jun 20, 2018
rated it did not like it
Dec 10, 2016
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A native Minnesotan, Susan Koefod spent much of her girlhood taking long bicycle rides and walks through hilly Dakota County and along the beautiful Mississippi River valley that shapes the state's southeastern border. Such excursions typically filled her imagination with poetry and story ideas. In fact, she invariably thought of herself in the third person, and she fictionalized herself in her ea ...more
More about Susan Koefod

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