A Night on Moon Hill
Swimming is Daphne’s one refuge—until the night she finds a body in her pool.
University professor and renowned author Daphne Lessing has never felt at ease in society. But a disturbing occurrence in her once calm and controlled existence suddenly unearths events from her past and thrusts an unusual child into her life.
Ten-year-old Eric has Asperger’s syndrome and is obsessed with fishing and angels. Soon, Daphne finds herself attached to him—and faced with a choice: Does she leave him and return to her solitary, ordered life, trusting others to do right by him, or does she allow this bright child to draw her into the world she has tried to shun? And what about the man that came into Daphne’s life with Eric? Will she be able to shut him out as well?
By Elizabeth, Submitted on 2015-02-25
Tanya Parker Mills’ latest book, A Night on Moon Hill, is a finalist for the Whitney Award. This is not surprising, as Ms. Mills is a gifted writer who works over her prose until it’s pared down to an elegant essence.
The main character of this book, Dr. Daphne Lessing, is an English professor and bestselling author. She’s also an outsider who holds herself aloof from emotional entanglements until someone from her past snares her into a tender trap.
Though she fights against it, Daphne finds herself caring for, and learning from, a ten-year-old boy with Asperger’s. As she learns to love, Daphne becomes a more loveable person. It’s part of Ms. Mills’ genius that she is able to teach that lesson without hackneyed situations or author intrusion.
Tanya Parker Mills’ first book, The Reckoning, was also about an outsider who comes to terms with family secrets and what those secrets have done to her. Like Daphne Lessing, she finds love in an odd package, and it transforms her. The Reckoning won several awards, too. Ms. Mills is certainly consistent.
As you will find when you read A Night on Moon Hill, Tanya Parker Mills is also a poet. Don’t let that scare you away, though. There’s a great story line with a little romance, a bit of a mystery, and some marvelously interesting characters. It’s a book that will stay with you long after you’ve turned the last page. I highly recommend it.
By Sheila, Submitted on 2015-02-25
I picked up A Night on Moon Hill and was immediately surprised about how fast I was pulled into this story.The novel starts with a bang and a big mystery about the body that Daphne finds floating in her swimming pool. Though Daphne seems to be a hard to relate to character, she is very intriguing. As her story and life unfolds, you can't stop reading because you want to know more.
The story becomes even more interesting when 10 year old Eric, a precocious young boy with Aspergers Syndrome, enters her life. Daphne is drawn to this intelligent child and finds that they have so much in common. I loved Eric as he reminds me of several children that I have taught in the past that fall somewhere along the ASD Spectrum.Here is some information if you don't know a lot about ASD.
What are Autism Spectrum Disorders?
Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASDs) are a group of developmental disabilities which affect behavior, communication and social interaction. Most children with ASDs appear to develop relatively normally until the ages of 18 to 36 months. During this window parents or professionals begin to notice developmental delays. Mild forms of Autism Spectrum Disorder may resemble a learning disability while more severe forms may involve substantial impairment of communication, learning and social abilities, abnormal responses to sensory stimuli and sometimes self-injurious behavior. Individuals with Autism may have one or two skill areas which exceed age-matched peers’ skill levels. These skills frequently appear in the areas of mathematical computation, music, art or memory. Children with milder forms of ASD may be diagnosed with Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) or with Asperger’s Disorder.
I wanted to point out that I read the first 100 pages so fast it shocked me! I looked down and there was page "100". This story is so well written, and with characters that bring you into the story so deeply, you will have this novel read in no time. What will you find in this novel? A great combination of suspense, angst, romance and relationships that will truly make you think. You will also look at life and people a little differently. I love the respect and care that Tanya has given to the tender subjects found within the pages of this novel. For all of this, I'm giving this book 5 stars!
By Kelly, Submitted on 2015-02-25
I rounded up from 4.5 stars. What an interesting and informative novel. I loved the insights into life with Asperger's the author shared. It was both an entertaining story with a fun plot, as well as being educationally uplifting for me. The love interest, Clayton, was such a good character. The struggles and decisions some of the characters faced were very thought provoking and had me thinking about A Night on Moon HIll long after I read the last page. Well done!