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Publisher's Summary

"When all is said and done, killing my mother came easily."

So begins The Almost Moon, Alice Sebold's astonishing, brilliant, and daring new novel. A woman steps over the line into the unthinkable in this unforgettable work by the author of The Lovely Bones and Lucky.

For years Helen Knightly has given her life to others - to her haunted mother, to her enigmatic father, to her husband and grown children. When she finally crosses a terrible boundary, her life comes rushing in at her in a way she never could have imagined.

Unfolding over the next 24 hours, this searing, fast-paced audiobook explores the complex ties between mothers and daughters, wives and lovers, the meaning of devotion, and the line between love and hate. It is a challenging, moving, gripping story, written with the fluidity and strength of voice that only Alice Sebold has.

©2007 Alice Sebold; (P)2007 Hachette Audio

What members say

Average Customer Ratings


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  • Overall
  • Rebecca
  • Rocklin, US, Canada
  • 09-26-09

Life isn't nice and tidy

I waited a couple of weeks after finishing this to write a review so I could get some perspective. This is a disturbing story, yes, but its so real. Alice Sebold has the ability to write about real human feelings and thoughts in a way that gets into my head and I feel like I am in the story. This story isn't told, it's shown and experienced. I was engrossed from beginning to end. I could relate with the main character completely. I doubt I will ever forget this book. The storyline is not "normal" and the end is not all wrapped up nice and tidy. That's the point. Life isn't tidy. Messes happen. I think some people will be threatened by the main character's ability to do what she does. It isn't for those who desperately try to deny their humanity.

9 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Overall


Once again, Alice Sebold walks on the wild side, tackling the margins of conventional life and traditional storytelling. She continually pushes the imagination into the unthinkable and forces the reader to suspend disbelief and think outside the borders of quotidian reality.

A truly astonishing read. One I couldn't put down.

24 of 26 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Pat
  • Chapel Hill, NC, USA
  • 11-10-07


This is an amazing book. I did not expect to like it after the first few minutes, but Sebold draws you in and within a half-hour I was spellbound. She writes in clear, bold, exquisitely detailed prose about taboo and unsavory events and makes them completely understandable and forgivable. I loved this book and will read everything else this remarkable woman has written.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Joyce
  • hendersonville, NC, USA
  • 11-09-07

I loved it!

I loved this book. As one reviewer notes, it is not a happy story. However, it is a real story about real people. The author goes back and forth between what is happening now, and memories of what happened at an earlier time. Through these memories, we come to understand the characters, although I did not necessarily like all of them. I highly recommend this book. Well narrated. I couldn't put it down!

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Mother's day - sort of.

Having read Alice Sebold’s first two book a memoir “Lucky” about her own rape and “Lovely Bones” her first novel. Both are strong powerful works. “The Almost Mood “ is no less powerful and disturbing. Her lead is outstanding and the rest of the book haunting and seeking to understand what she had done and why. This is no books for the faint of heart or those who must judge others. This is an interior book with more revelation per chapter and you will ever expect. Alice - please keep writing!.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Karen
  • Soddy Daisy, United States Minor Outlying Islands
  • 12-15-07

not what I expected, but...

Having read Sebold's "Lucky" and "The Lovely Bones," I think I came to "The Almost Moon" with my expectations preset. And while this new novel is (in my opinion) nothing like "The Lovely Bones" it was very good.

Sebold has a way of getting into the minds of her character in a way that very few writers can. Her characters are very real, very human, doing and thinking things that are completely unmentionable in normal society and conversation. It was a very compelling, well-paced book, and makes you realize how quickly your life can change in a single moment of weakness -- or strength, depending on how you look at it.

If you have not read Sebold's other books, I recommend that you do so. She is a remarkable author and an amazing woman who has experienced more than her fair share of horror. However, I can only guess that her past has made her the great writer she is today. I look forward to many more novels from this author.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Louise
  • Wallingford, CT, United States
  • 11-24-07


Amazing listen. The reader, wonderful. Sad story but in fact touches all of us in some way. Trying to understand what makes us tick, maybe not in the way of the story but in what makes us who we really are. Excellent book.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Marjory
  • Bloomington, IL, United States
  • 02-07-10

A sad but very poweful story

I know some people said this story was disgusting and awful, but if you have ever lived in a home with family members that are mentally ill it makes sense. I see it as a cautionary tale that if you choose not to take care of your illness it will come back to kill you, either by your own hand or by the child you have passed your illness on too. None the less a great read for those with an open mind.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Dark and Depressing

Would you try another book from Alice Sebold and/or Joan Allen?

Not sure

Has The Almost Moon turned you off from other books in this genre?


Did the narration match the pace of the story?

The narrator was fine.

You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

Not really.

Any additional comments?

I didn’t like the main character, she seemed very unstable, selfish and self-absorbed. Sleeping with her friend’s son, was just gross. This book is just dark and depressing.

  • Overall

Murderer or mercy killer

Very addictive and characters that make you question whos side your on was a murder mercy or just murder