Moonlight Dreamers by Siobhan Curham
Walker Books 2016. ISBN 9781406365825
(Age: 10+ Highly recommended. This is perhaps one of the best books for adolescent girls I have read in a long time. I really wish I'd read it growing up. Dealing with issues ranging from racism, religion, bullying, body-image, sexuality, and the public and private sphere, this is highly likely to appeal to a wide audience of young women who are struggling to find a place in the world.
Moonlight Dreamers follows four lonely girls as they are brought together by a secret society, The Moonlight Dreamers, and their shared love of Oscar Wilde and his writing. The society is all about encouraging their dreams and supporting one another to achieve them. Amber is an outcast, an Oscar Wilde nerd, she's got two dads and the girls at school are trying to teach her that there's something wrong with that. Maali is a shy, introverted photographer who is terrible at talking to boys. Sky's world is being turned upside down by her father meeting another woman, and more than anything she wants to perform her poetry. Rose, the only non-oddball of the group, is being pressured by her mother into a modelling career she hates - all she wants to do is see her father in America and bake. Each girl feels like she's being pressured from all sides, and only in coming together do they learn that they are no alone, and find the strength to face their problems.
I would highly recommend this novel for any girl aged ten and up, particularly if they too resonate with this quote: 'Yes I am a dreamer. For a dreamer is one who can only find his way my moonlight, and his punishment is that he sees the dawn before the rest of the world.' - Oscar Wilde.
Kayla Gaskell, University student, aged 20