After an awkward first encounter, Birdie and Daniel are forced to work together in a Seattle hotel where a famous author leads a mysterious and secluded life in this romantic contemporary novel from the author of Alex, Approximately.
Mystery-book aficionado Birdie Lindberg has an overactive imagination. Raised in isolation and homeschooled by strict grandparents, she’s cultivated a whimsical fantasy life in which she plays the heroic detective and every stranger is a suspect. But her solitary world expands when she takes a job the summer before college, working the graveyard shift at a historic Seattle hotel.
In her new job, Birdie hopes to blossom from introverted dreamer to brave pioneer, and gregarious Daniel Aoki volunteers to be her guide. The hotel’s charismatic young van driver shares the same nocturnal shift and patronizes the waterfront Moonlight Diner where she waits for the early morning ferry after work. Daniel also shares her appetite for intrigue, and he’s stumbled upon a real-life mystery: a famous reclusive writer—never before seen in public—might be secretly meeting someone at the hotel.
To uncover the writer’s puzzling identity, Birdie must come out of her shell…discovering that most confounding mystery of all may be her growing feelings for the elusive riddle that is Daniel.
I loved the premise and I liked the aesthetic of this story. I couldn’t help myself and created this graphic.
But I have to say that as much as I liked the premise and the book’s characters, this book was a bit on the slow side. I was looking forward to the mystery aspect in the novel but it just wasn’t prominent in the book.
I think I wasn’t a huge fan of how the mystery aspect was handled, however, I did like the character development. I loved Birdie and Daniel. Their meet-cute reminded me a bit of the Korean drama called “My Secret Romance.” If this already sounds interesting to you, I recommend giving this book a shot!
Also, I loved Birdie’s aunt Mona and how she was very supportive. I think it’s rare in YA nowadays where you read about parent/s or guardian/s of characters so it was nice to read about it in this one. I thought Mona was hilarious and her character was a great addition to the story, a good contrast to Birdie’s grandpa who was a bit strict.
Additionally, the author addressed important topics like consent (sex positivity). I thought it was done effectively through dialogue. What I liked about it was that it felt real. I felt the main character’s awkwardness, confusion, and anxiety when talking about certain topics.
Overall, “Serious Moonlight” was a cute YA contemporary with great diversity. I think fans of Jenn Bennet would enjoy reading about Birdie’s awkwardness and Daniel was also a likable character in general. For newer readers of Jenn Bennet’s books, I’d recommend reading her previous novels before “Serious Moonlight.” I’ll definitely be checking out more books from this author in the future because she tends to write about different characters with intriguing stories.
**Huge thanks to the publisher for providing an arc copy in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.