coming of age
Followers of this blog will recognize Julie Richman’s name as the author who knocked my socks off with her debut novel, Searching for Moore. My review, on July 11th, was one of the most organic posts I have written, since starting this blog. Julie’s words inspired a friendship between Kristen, Samantha, Cleida and I that culminated in the Searching for Moore Book Trailer, on July 23rd. These relationships have continued to evolve and I am proud to count these women among my dear friends.
Julie and I stayed up countless nights this Summer analyzing publishing trends, discussing the merits of stand-alone books versus book series, realizing that we had worked at similar agencies at different points in our careers and bonding over her “Needing Moore” series. I knew she was writing a follow-up book to Searching for Moore, but was conflicted. She originally intended to write two books for the series, not three. However, her characters, namely Mia Silver, guided her into writing a beautifully, heart-breaking second book: Moore to Lose. Julie received advice from many “experts” in the publishing world, who told her not to write this book. What the “experts” failed to realize, was that when Julie’s characters spoke to her, she listened. And wrote.
Then she shared her words with Mom Richman, Kristen, Cleida, Samantha and I.
After reading Moore to Lose I was speechless. Breathless and hyperventilating, I cried. I was unprepared for the myriad of emotions and memories it would trigger in me. It was a deeply personal experience, for I have known Mia my entire life. I have been Mia.
Moore to Lose focused on Mia’s journey. We already knew she was not the typical, innocent ingénue – she was a tough New York City girl. This story showed us the dichotomy of the sweet teenager versus maturing young woman, in some of her early decisions. Decisions that many readers have made in their own lives – good, bad and ugly. Julie approached these events with great sensitivity, knowing how deeply the readers were invested in Mia’s happiness.
What Julie did not know was that as I was reading these incredibly difficult, gut-wrenching scenes, I was reliving events from my college days. Events that were entirely too common for college women. (Still are, unfortunately.) As Mia continued on her life’s path, I revisited similar situations that my friends and I found ourselves in and our reactions to those situations. As the story progressed, and Mia’s past caught up with her, my heart broke alongside hers. Later, Julie placed Mia at the center of one of the most agonizingly painful events in recent history. As Julie suffered writing those words, she crafted a grief-stricken, yet delicately fitting homage to her beloved NYC. She should be proud of the way she honored her resplendent and resilient hometown.
Julie continued to weave the rich tapestry that became Moore to Lose by revisiting familiar secondary characters and using New York City as a vivid backdrop for the action. In fact, NYC served as another character in the story and served as a touchstone for Mia’s voyage of self-discovery. Julie further incorporated her trademark use of music and popular culture references as touchstones throughout the story. They helped mark the passage of time and kept Schooner with Mia, connected across the miles and years.
Moore to Lose is so much more than a “romance” novel. It is the story of a woman losing, finding, healing and honoring herself and her spirit. We fell in love with Mia in Searching for Moore. In Moore to Lose, we understand why we love her. As Mia lives her life, we live the experiences with her. Searching for Moore was a roller coaster ride of emotions. Moore to Lose took that ride, plunged it into complete darkness and added loops, spins and rolls.
Julie promised that all issues would be resolved in the third, and final, book in the Needing Moore series. I will be anxiously waiting for that book, and highly recommend Moore to Lose, for readers who want rich characters who evoke tears, anger, joy, heartbreak, forgiveness, friendship, acceptance, and ultimately, love.
In the meantime, please enjoy the Moore to Lose Book Trailer.
This entry was posted in Book Reviews, Books and Authors, Contemporary Romance, Female Empowerment, Generation X, LIfe, Music, Women and tagged college sweethearts reunited, coming of age, contemporary romance, emotional, humorous, Julie Richman, Moore to Lose, Needing Moore series, Romance, Searching for Moore.