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Once in a Full Moon (Full Moon Series #1)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

14 out of 14 people found this review helpful.

Reviewed by Jaglvr for Teens Read Too

Celeste Parker has the ideal boyfriend. Nash is the popular boy at school. He's also the best friend of her two best friends' boyfriends, so it makes it handy when they want to hang out. The six of them can do everything together. But things subtly start to change for C...
Celeste Parker has the ideal boyfriend. Nash is the popular boy at school. He's also the best friend of her two best friends' boyfriends, so it makes it handy when they want to hang out. The six of them can do everything together. But things subtly start to change for Celeste the night the six of them go camping. Nash tells the gang the story of the Legend's Run werewolf. In the distance, a wolf howls, and they go running in fright from the woods. When the boys make a bet that the girls are too scared to visit a psychic on the wrong side of town, the girls take them up on it. Abby and Ivy get generic fortunes, but Celeste gets one that haunts her: Beware of a kiss under a full moon. It will change your life forever. Celeste decides to walk home from the psychic and encounters a bizarre freak snow storm - and a pack of wolves. It's a newcomer to town, Brandon Maddox, who comes to her aid, but he is bitten in the scuffle. Celeste can't stop thinking of Brandon and comparing Nash to him. Because the girls won the bet with the guys, Celeste forces Nash to invite Brandon to one of his parties. Of course it doesn't go well, and Celeste breaks up with Nash. Slowly, Celeste and Brandon get to know each other in secret. None of Celeste's friends would approve of her friendship with someone from the wrong side of town. But Brandon is everything Celeste wants. Celeste visits Brandon on the night of a full moon and watches him transform into something else. Brandon doesn't know what is happening, nor does Celeste. But over time, Celeste is positive he's a werewolf and tries to convince him, as well. ONCE IN A FULL MOON is only the start of a new series by Ellen Schreiber. I believe there will be mixed opinions with this series. On the one hand, it's by Ellen Schreiber, and she already has such a loyal fan base. But on the other hand, those expecting a story like VAMPIRE KISSES will be disappointed. ONCE IN A FULL MOON reads so differently from her other series that it didn't feel like the same author at all. I feel that ONCE IN A FULL MOON actually has more substance to the tale than Raven and Alexander's story does. This one took a little longer to build up to the action, but it gives the reader time to get to know Celeste and her friends and the background of Legend's Run. Celeste is a positive role model for readers. She's a studious gal who volunteers willingly at a nursing home, and even develops a close friendship with one of the residents there. I can't wait to see more of Brandon in the future. He's kept brooding and to himself as the new boy in town, but I see so much potential in him. The cover is absolutely beautiful and that alone will draw readers to the book. If you like Ellen Schreiber, if you enjoy werewolves, and certainly if you love a little romance, pick up ONCE IN A FULL MOON.

posted by TeensReadToo on January 6, 2011

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Most Helpful Critical Review

3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

Clichéd and Lacking Development

This is the first book I've read by Ellen Schreiber, so I have nothing to compare it to, but I'll be honest and say that I did not enjoy the book. Celeste, the main character, is nothing more than a love-struck teen who becomes obsessed with her paranormal paramour, Bra...
This is the first book I've read by Ellen Schreiber, so I have nothing to compare it to, but I'll be honest and say that I did not enjoy the book. Celeste, the main character, is nothing more than a love-struck teen who becomes obsessed with her paranormal paramour, Brandon. They have one of those insta-love relationships that have little to no buildup and lead to undying love. Aside from that, I don't even know who they are.

Celeste, Brandon, and all the surrounding characters have almost no development. I never swooned over Brandon or even Celeste's ex-boyfriend, Nash. In fact, I found very few redeeming qualities about Nash and Celeste's best friends Ivy and Abby. The three of them aren't nice and Celeste is constantly troubled by her friends ditching her because of her affections for Brandon, who comes from the 'wrong side of town.' Talk about the bestest friends in the whole wide world. *Please note my extreme sarcasm

The werewolf aspect to the story is slightly different from other incarnations that I've read, but not even that makes the book all that worthwhile. The writing is riddled with clichés and gave me more than a few facepalm moments because I couldn't even handle the cheesiness. The plot was rushed and the romance was forced. Celeste and Brandon paw over each other way too much when there are much more important and urgent matters at hand - nothing matters to them, but kissing and giving each other gaga eyes.

Once in a Full Moon fooled me with its striking cover, but younger audiences could still enjoy it. The writing is certainly aimed towards a younger audience and if you can get past the clichés and lack of character development, the werewolf aspect may draw you in.

Opening line: It began underneath the haunting glow of a full moon. ~ pg. 12

No favorite lines this time

*This is the ARC version and lines, cover art, etc. may be subject to change before official publication. E-book page numbers may not match with physical copies.

posted by Nikkayme on January 3, 2011

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  • Posted January 3, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Clichéd and Lacking Development

    This is the first book I've read by Ellen Schreiber, so I have nothing to compare it to, but I'll be honest and say that I did not enjoy the book. Celeste, the main character, is nothing more than a love-struck teen who becomes obsessed with her paranormal paramour, Brandon. They have one of those insta-love relationships that have little to no buildup and lead to undying love. Aside from that, I don't even know who they are.

    Celeste, Brandon, and all the surrounding characters have almost no development. I never swooned over Brandon or even Celeste's ex-boyfriend, Nash. In fact, I found very few redeeming qualities about Nash and Celeste's best friends Ivy and Abby. The three of them aren't nice and Celeste is constantly troubled by her friends ditching her because of her affections for Brandon, who comes from the 'wrong side of town.' Talk about the bestest friends in the whole wide world. *Please note my extreme sarcasm

    The werewolf aspect to the story is slightly different from other incarnations that I've read, but not even that makes the book all that worthwhile. The writing is riddled with clichés and gave me more than a few facepalm moments because I couldn't even handle the cheesiness. The plot was rushed and the romance was forced. Celeste and Brandon paw over each other way too much when there are much more important and urgent matters at hand - nothing matters to them, but kissing and giving each other gaga eyes.

    Once in a Full Moon fooled me with its striking cover, but younger audiences could still enjoy it. The writing is certainly aimed towards a younger audience and if you can get past the clichés and lack of character development, the werewolf aspect may draw you in.

    Opening line: It began underneath the haunting glow of a full moon. ~ pg. 12

    No favorite lines this time

    *This is the ARC version and lines, cover art, etc. may be subject to change before official publication. E-book page numbers may not match with physical copies.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted January 29, 2011

    Just fell flat

    Once in a Full Moon was a decent werewolf story, but it just didn't quite grab me. Sometimes I thought it was a bit cheesy, but overall it was a decent story.

    Celeste has everything she could want great friends a hot boyfriend, but then a new mysterious guy comes to town and everything changes. Celeste and her friends go to a psychic lady on a sort of a dare. Their boyfriends don't think they would go to Riverside, sort of the bad side of town, and they take them up on the challenge. Her two friends Abby and Ivy get the typical palm reading that makes Celeste think right off this psychics a phony, then Celeste gets her palm read.

    "I see snow, she began. "Beware of the woods...of the sounds of howling. There could be a outsider who will turn...underneath the glow of the full moon."

    Now Celeste really thinks the woman's crazy. But after this crazy prediction Celeste life changes and so does the new guy Brandon's. Brandon seems like a real nice guy and likable. I feel a bit sorry for him because he got bit by a wolf saving Celeste from them and now his life is turned upside down. I guess you could say this story is sort of the Romeo and Juliet of werewolf stories. He is from the wrong side of the tracks, but Celeste doesn't care about that. She does on the other hand care about what her friends think because they don't like Brandon because he is from Riverside.

    Celeste makes me a little made because I kept thinking if you want to be with Brandon then just come out and say it because its not nice to keep Nash hanging thinking that she was going to come around and start seeing him again. I know its teenage insecurities not wanting her friends to hate her but I didn't think it was fair to Brandon.

    The part I thought was a little bit cheesy to me was that she kept hanging around him when he is changing into a werewolf. The guys got fangs growing and she wants to kiss him? I guess he is not a mean werewolf sort of reminds me of the movie Teen Wolf. =) It just doesn't have the pizazz that a lot of other stories about werewolves have, it just sort of falls flat. I might check out the next book but it won't be a priority.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 17, 2013

    I Also Recommend:

    Okay

    More of a 2.5 rating for this one. While this wasn't as good, or guilty pleasure-ish? as her other series, still found this one to be okay while at the same time got annoyed. A little...a lot actually.

    Where Vampire Kisses was on vampires, this one's on werewolves. It had a slow but good pace, kept the story moving forward all that.

    But it had moments where I was like, do we really have to know you like Brandon, yes we get it, he's hot and all that. And of course how her...obsession of him? I mean its brought up, sort of, kind of? But still, she just met the guy and starts to fall for him after a dire situation and all but still.

    At least she gets to know him and he her. Then there's moments I couldn't help but roll my eyes, thinking really?

    Anyway, an okay read. Yes I'll read the rest of the series

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  • Posted August 18, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Playful Review brought to you by Maja Once in a Full Moon is a

    Playful Review brought to you by Maja Once in a Full Moon is a new
    novel by Ellen Schreiber, a writer, artist, and former actress also
    known for her collection Vampire Kisses. Unlike her previous works
    dealing with vampires, this time, Ellen serves us with a werewolf in
    disguise. The plot of Once in a Full Moon is rather simple; Celeste
    Parker is an ordinary girl in a relationship with Nash, a star jock who
    treats her well and sometimes neglects her. Celeste’s two best friends
    are popular, snobbish, self-centered girls whose boyfriends also fit the
    jock profile. They all live in a small town called Legend’s Run divided
    by wealth and privilege and Celeste’s group automatically excludes
    anyone who lives on the wrong side of town. However, nothing is what it
    seems as the ‘wrong side of town’ turns out to be (to Celeste’s great
    surprise) a more free, playful and charismatic place to live, full of
    freedom and genuine people. However, Celeste’s group dissipates as a new
    student comes into town named Brandon Maddox, isolated for his
    unprivileged background. He is charming, magnetic and mysterious and
    seems to develop an interest in Celeste, despite her over-bearing jock
    boyfriend. The two start spending time together, as Celeste is drawn to
    the charismatic and enigmatic Brandon. Her boyfriend becomes more
    attentive, sensing Celeste’s attention has shifted to the newcomer.
    Coincidentally, wolves start gathering around Legend’s Run and at one
    point threaten Celeste. Brandon saves her and she realizes she is in
    love with him, Problems start when people start fearing a werewolf, as
    witnessed by a news reporter in Legend’s run. Brandon notices with
    horror that he is morphing into a beast every full moon and wonders
    whether to share his secret with Celeste. The ending offers an
    interesting turn as young lovers face a challenge – will Brandon’s
    secret bind them or set them apart? This review and more at
    openbooksociety dot com

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  • Posted March 7, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Once in a Full Moon- A dubious prophecy, shallow characters and hollow dialogues! I can¿t howl at that moon!

    Once in a Full Moon begins with a well-known scene: a group of teenagers sits around a campfire, tells scary stories about a werewolf legend, then they coincidentally hear the howl of a wolf and get scared.

    Being fascinated by its cover and summary I couldn’t wait to start reading Once in a Full Moon. Finally having started reading and being halfway through it, I couldn’t wait to quit reading it again. I hoped to read about new fantasy elements of the werewolf world but only encountered a ton of stereotypes like a mindless football player, shallow and material shopping friends and a quack doctor.

    I am always open to make new friends with protagonists, but I couldn’t stand our female protagonist Celeste (whose name represents another misplaced element when talking about a werewolf and celestial influences). Although she is a very thoughtful character, she doesn’t come to appropriate solutions. She keeps her true feelings a secret and always acts in response to her best friend’s opinions which I find disappointing. Celeste is a weak character with no own opinion, controlled more by hormones and less by rationality when she and the situation need it the most. Where other novels take the chance by equalling their main character’s flaws or weakness with extraordinary and protruding secondary characters, Once in a Full Moon continues building up an ensemble of ridiculously ignorant characters that are unlikeable and unauthentic.

    Ellen Schreiber applies the classic werewolf elements of changes in dependence of moon phases and the bite of a wolf as trigger.
    Our male protagonist, Brandon changes into a classic werewolf with human and animal-like features. But what Celeste describes as an appealing and hot werewolf look, I find even unsexy. His wolf form makes me wishing him to change back into human form fast.

    What I like about Schreiber’s werewolf presentation is that Celeste and Brandon experience his new identity together where other novels put the changing character in a lonely position of self-awareness.
    New about the classic werewolf-moon dependence is that a kiss has an influence on Brandon’s change.

    The story itself has no flow and consists of short chapters which show unsmooth and inconsistent transitions. It is constructed very obviously so there weren’t many surprises to me. And although there are only short distances and sometimes minor or even unimportant problems to bridge, our heroine seems to spot a drama behind every corner.

    Once in a Full Moon is dominated by shallow emotions, clichéd characters and predictable events. Schreiber applies so many clichés that her novel, by adding more charm and wit, would have perfectly worked as a (good) satire.

    THE VERDICT

    Disappointing stereotypes, a foreseeable storyline and an average writing style form another novel in the huge pool of fantasy novels, but absolutely no remarkable.
    You should read this novel if you are a fan of Ellen Schreiber or don’t want to miss a single novel in the werewolf spectrum.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 15, 2012

    cant finish

    i am half way through an bored, not worth cost i spent on it plus its just 191 pages. young teen book, very young teen. :)

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  • Posted May 10, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Very, VERY disappointed...

    I'm not a werewolf fan, so when HarperTeen (via NetGalley) sent me the ebook, I was intrigued about 'Once in a full moon'.

    It was such a disappointment. I believe this book was an immitation of a bad fan-fiction story.

    The writing was poor for YA adult book; the descriptions were incompleted, I lost the track of the history so many times! And please, don't say it was because of me.
    I was so bored through all the book. I don't know what's going on with me; I had read GREAT books, so when I try to like this kind of mediocre plot, I fail.

    And the, 'Oh, he's a werewolf, he's in front of me and he's SO BEAUTIFUL' part? Come on!

    I'm so, so sorry.

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  • Posted January 25, 2011

    The magnus pack series and The pride stories

    This book wasn't bad but it wasn't that great either,the author lack's creativity especially about werewolfs.The romance was childs play and cute,i dont really like cute.When i first saw the cover for the book i thought it would be interesting but it wasn't that good it took me a month to finish it and am i fast reader it takes me a day to read a book and books as big as twilight breaking dawn two days.am not looking forward to reading any more books from this author and if you reader's see this comment and you want real wolf or shifter books to read check out Shelly Laurenston books the Magnus Pack series or The Pride Stories series these book will have u laughing out in public and begging for more.You can also check out Charlene Teglia books Animal Attraction or Claimed by the wolf.

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  • Posted January 6, 2011

    Just OK

    ONCE IN A FULL MOON, by Ellen Schreiber, drew me instantly by the cover. The girl in the moon looks wild and untamed, and since I am a lover of werewolf books, I thought this would be a home run. But, I have to say my expectations for this book were not met.

    Since I have read a lot of werewolf books, I am always interested in 'the change'. Some books keep it neat and clean (Twilight) and other's do not (Bitten). I have to say that I have never seen a change like this before and I was actually more confused than anything. It seems like the werewolf just grows a lot of hair including a goatee? It was definitely different but very strange to me.

    Also, the fact that Celeste was too darn nice. Like really nice. She couldn't tell the guy she was friends with and dating that she didn't like him and let him off the hook. Her feelings for him were so superficial, and even she knew that so why not bite the bullet and let him go? And her 'friends' were not really friends at all. Celeste kept everything from them but still insisted that they were the best of buddies.

    The relationship between Brandon and Celeste was too lovey dovey for me. There was really no explanation for their connection other than he was hot and from the wrong side of town. And another thing that was left to no explanation was the werewolf lore. I wish Schreiber would have explored why Celeste was the deciding factor in the werewolf transformation.

    This book was not for me. It seemed like too much of a fantasy without having much backing to it. I think that teens would probably enjoy it though. The relationship was cute and I can see where it would appear to be a 'great love' but it just did not work for me.

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    Posted August 5, 2011

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