Customer Reviews for

Moon Over Manifest

Average Rating 4
( 213 )
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

10 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

A Must Read

Sometimes you know why a book is an award winner and sometimes you don't. In the case of Moon Over Manifest (Newbery Award winner), a debut novel by Clare Vanderpool, it is evident from page one that you are reading a wonderful book. The story itself, the characters, th...
Sometimes you know why a book is an award winner and sometimes you don't. In the case of Moon Over Manifest (Newbery Award winner), a debut novel by Clare Vanderpool, it is evident from page one that you are reading a wonderful book. The story itself, the characters, the writing all combine into a beautifully woven tale about Abilene Tucker, sent by her father, Gideon, to Manifest, Kansas for the summer of 1936 while he goes off to work on the railroad, a dangerous place for a twelve year old girl.

Hitching train rides with her father since she was tiny, Abilene jumps the train before it rolls into the Manifest depot. According to her, it's best to get the lay of the land ahead of time. Gideon had lived in Manifest for a time as a boy and has entrusted Abilene to the care of Shady, the town barkeep (in the time of Prohibition) and (long-term) interim preacher. Shady, knowing Gideon and his traveling habits, meets Abilene as she walks into town, calm as can be.

She, and we, are immediately introduced to Hattie Mae Harper, the town's newspaper reporter and author of the column Hattie Mae's News Auxiliary. Abilene begins to get an uneasy feeling about Gideon and his returning to get her from the whispering going on between Shady and Hattie Mae.

The following day is the last day of school for the summer and oddly enough, Shady makes Abilene attend-to get to know the local kids. Another omen regarding Gideon's return. There she befriends Ruthanne and Lettie who become her best friends.

Crucial to the story is Miss Sadie, a diviner or reader of the earth and its surroundings, who while Abilene tends her garden, tells a tale of Manifest during1917 and 1918, focusing in on two boys, Ned and Jinx and their adventures, travails and dreams. How Ned and Jinx fit into the Manifest of 1936 and the lives of Abilene and Shady is slowly, lovingly unveiled. And, yes, there might have been a tear or two in my eye when I read the last chapter.

If I were to ponder forever, I don't think I could think of a way to improve Moon Over Manifest. One can tell it's a labor of love. Every character is just right from Miss Sadie to Abilene and Shady, to the mean Mr. Devlin, owner of the local coal mine. The interspersing of history (Prohibition, World War I, the horrid conditions under which coal miners worked, the Midwest draught) with the lives of the townspeople to the beliefs of the times about such things as elixirs and hair tonic make Moon Over Manifest fascinating.

Ms. Vanderpool's wordsmithing couldn't be better. She manages to create suspense, humor, love and heartache in her marvelous story. So take the time to treat yourself. Get carried away in Moon Over Manifest. There are many authors writing books these days. However, there are few 'storytellers' in that grand old tradition and Clare Vanderpool should now be included in their ranks.

posted by EdNY on April 25, 2011

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Most Helpful Critical Review

12 out of 19 people found this review helpful.

A Kids Review - Kind Of Hard To Keep Up

I have only been really doing a lot of reading for about a year now. In this book, Abilene is cool and when she finds an old cigar box with some letters in that that give reference to a spy called Rattler, Abilene and her friends start a spy hunt. This was my first sh...
I have only been really doing a lot of reading for about a year now. In this book, Abilene is cool and when she finds an old cigar box with some letters in that that give reference to a spy called Rattler, Abilene and her friends start a spy hunt. This was my first shot at trying to get into a mystery that also had historical aspects in the book on the recommendation of my teacher. I did get through the book; but, I wouldn't recommend this book for kids my age that have been reluctant readers. If you love reading and have been for years, you will like this book! Tex

posted by TexRogers on January 16, 2011

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 14, 2013

    HORRIBLE

    Had to read this book for a report, it was awful! No hook to it, not a good plot, just plain old boring!!! Trust me its bad!!!!!

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 25, 2012

    This book I felt was a very slow paced story. The only good thin

    This book I felt was a very slow paced story. The only good thing about that is in the chapters you really do get to learn the details about the characters and feel you are walking through Manifest. I wouldn't recommend this book for children though because it is a slow read and isn't ideal for the impatient child.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 27, 2012

    Just ok

    Too short of a story for $7.99

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 28, 2012

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    Posted January 15, 2011

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    Posted January 22, 2011

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    Posted January 13, 2011

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    Posted October 25, 2011

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    Posted October 16, 2011

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