The Half Moon

“The Half Moon” by Mary Beth Keane is a quiet story set in the small town of Gillam, New York. The story focuses on a strained marriage, a struggling bar, small-town dynamics, lifelong dreams, mistakes and forgiveness. The characters are deeply developed and likable – so if you love character driven novels, check this one out.
Jess and Malcolm love each other deeply and have been married for years. Jess is a successful lawyer and Malcolm is a well-liked bartender/owner of “The Half Moon.” But Jess’s career isn’t making her happy and Malcolm’s bar is struggling to stay afloat. And the couple have been living with infertility issues for year after year, disappointment after disappointment. A snowstorm hits Gillam and power goes out for days, giving time for reflection but also bringing the police asking about a missing bar patron…
I loved the complex characters of Jess and Malcolm. The story is told first from Malcolm’s point of view and later from Jess’s, which let me really see both of them more deeply. There is no wild action or deep mystery to the novel – it is more a snapshot of a marriage and where the relationship goes when dreams don’t go as planned. (Although there are a few surprising twists in the story.) Don’t miss “The Half Moon” if you love realistic relationship stories!

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