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Ginny Moon
Cover of Ginny Moon
Ginny Moon
A Novel

READ THE BOOK CRITICS ARE RAVING ABOUT!
“A brilliant debut." —Graeme Simsion, New York Times bestselling author of The Rosie Project
“A heartwarming and unforgettable page-turner." —Booklist, starred review
“A powerful affirmation of the fragility and strength of families." —Publishers Weekly, starred review
“At once captivating and heart-wrenching.... Ginny's is a unique and compelling voice.... Ginny Moon is original, revealing and timely. And, with any luck, it will spark much-needed conversations around foster care, adoption and autism. " —The Toronto Star
Full of great big heart and unexpected humor, Ludwig's debut introduces the lovable, wholly original Ginny Moon who discovers a new meaning of family on her unconventional journey home.

Ginny Moon is exceptional. Everyone knows it—her friends at school, teammates on the basketball team, and especially her new adoptive parents. They all love her, even if they don't quite understand her. They want her to feel like she belongs.
What they don't know is that Ginny has no intention of belonging. She's found her birth-mother on Facebook, and is determined to get back to her—even if it means going back to a place that was extremely dangerous. Because Ginny left something behind and she's desperate to get it back, to make things right.
But no one listens. No one understands. So Ginny takes matters into her own hands...
Benjamin Ludwig's whip-smart, unforgettable novel is an illuminating look at one girl's journey to find her way home and one of the freshest debuts in years.
Note from the Publisher: The original printing of this book features a creative distressed-look on the cover design.

READ THE BOOK CRITICS ARE RAVING ABOUT!
“A brilliant debut." —Graeme Simsion, New York Times bestselling author of The Rosie Project
“A heartwarming and unforgettable page-turner." —Booklist, starred review
“A powerful affirmation of the fragility and strength of families." —Publishers Weekly, starred review
“At once captivating and heart-wrenching.... Ginny's is a unique and compelling voice.... Ginny Moon is original, revealing and timely. And, with any luck, it will spark much-needed conversations around foster care, adoption and autism. " —The Toronto Star
Full of great big heart and unexpected humor, Ludwig's debut introduces the lovable, wholly original Ginny Moon who discovers a new meaning of family on her unconventional journey home.

Ginny Moon is exceptional. Everyone knows it—her friends at school, teammates on the basketball team, and especially her new adoptive parents. They all love her, even if they don't quite understand her. They want her to feel like she belongs.
What they don't know is that Ginny has no intention of belonging. She's found her birth-mother on Facebook, and is determined to get back to her—even if it means going back to a place that was extremely dangerous. Because Ginny left something behind and she's desperate to get it back, to make things right.
But no one listens. No one understands. So Ginny takes matters into her own hands...
Benjamin Ludwig's whip-smart, unforgettable novel is an illuminating look at one girl's journey to find her way home and one of the freshest debuts in years.
Note from the Publisher: The original printing of this book features a creative distressed-look on the cover design.

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About the Author-
  • A life-long teacher of English and writing, Benjamin Ludwig lives in New Hampshire with his family. He holds an MAT in English Education and an MFA in Writing. Shortly after he and his wife married they became foster parents and adopted a teenager with autism. The Original Ginny Moon is his first novel, which was inspired in part by his conversations with other parents at Special Olympics basketball practices. His website is available at www.benjaminludwig.com.
Reviews-
  • Publisher's Weekly

    Starred review from February 6, 2017
    Ludwig’s excellent debut is both a unique coming-of-age tale and a powerful affirmation of the fragility and strength of families. We meet 14-year-old Ginny, who has autism, as she settles into life with a new “forever family” and unexpectedly reconnects with Gloria, the abusive, drug-addicted mother from whom she was taken away at the age of nine—and Rick, the father she never knew. The rediscovery unsettles the tentative bond Ginny’s forged with adoptive parents Maura and Brian, exacerbates the teen’s heartbreaking fears for the “baby doll” she left behind, and ultimately triggers a wildly heroic, secret plan to run away to Canada with Gloria and Rick. Ludwig brilliantly depicts the literal-minded and inventive Ginny—whose horrifying past and valiant hope for the future are slowly unveiled—and the alternately selfish, sympathetic, and compassionate adults who would do anything to get Ginny to choose their love. “I just wish someone would talk about what a delightful young lady she is,” a frustrated Rick says. “We’re trying to keep her apart from everything... but I think what she needs is to be closer to people.”

  • Kirkus

    March 1, 2017
    Ginny Moon, who has autism, needs to get back to her birth mother by any means necessary. That's a problem, because that mother, Gloria, abused her.The narrator of Ludwig's debut novel, Ginny was taken from Gloria when she was 9 years old. Three adoptive homes later, Ginny is 14, and her Forever Parents, Maura and Brian, are expecting their first biological child. But just when they most need Ginny to be dependably gentle, she begins manifesting increasingly difficult behavior. It all stems from Ginny's desperate need to take care of her Baby Doll, whom she promised to protect and whom she hid in a suitcase just as the police arrived to rescue her from Gloria five years ago. Using a classmate's computer and various people's cellphones, Ginny begins to communicate with Gloria, hoping to reunite with Baby Doll but inadvertently putting herself and the Moon family in danger by revealing her home address. Tensions escalate as Ginny arranges her own kidnapping, forcing the Moons to decide whether to give up and send Ginny to St. Genevieve's Facility for Girls Who Aren't Safe or to continue Ginny's therapy sessions in the hope that she will gain some emotional attachment skills before the baby arrives. Along the way, surprising truths about Baby Doll emerge. In telling the tale from Ginny's perspective, Ludwig captures the carefully constructed, sometimes-claustrophobic world Ginny inhabits. Ginny protects herself from a confusing world by going down deep into her brain, closing her mouth so no one can see the ideas in her head. While it's an interesting perspective to inhabit, the staccato rhythm of the sentences can get a little tedious, as Ginny would say. By turns heartwarming and heartbreaking, Ginny's quest for a safe home leads her to discover her own strong voice.

    COPYRIGHT(2017) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • Library Journal

    Starred review from March 15, 2017

    This stunning debut novel grabs readers by the heart and doesn't let go. Fourteen-year-old Ginny Moon chronicles her increasingly harrowing life with her Forever Parents with one of the truest voices in modern literature. On the surface, Ginny is a typical teen, her days filled with friends, sports, and music. But Ginny is autistic, and her obsessive need to retrieve her Baby Doll from her past brutal life with a dangerous mother puts her on a collision course with her adoptive parents, their new baby, a legal system that has struggled to protect Ginny for five years, and her birth mother. Ginny's brilliant therapist unlocks one mystery, but the tension never lets up as the girl's focus on finding her Baby Doll moves them all into ever more perilous territory. Clearly, the barriers in Ginny's life are not just autism; the people on her support team, while dedicated, loving, and determined, must learn a powerful lesson about really listening to what she is saying. VERDICT Ludwig's triumphant achievement is borne from his own experience as the adoptive parent of a teen with autism, and his gorgeous, wrenching portrayal of Ginny's ability to communicate what she needs is perfection.--Beth E. Andersen, Ann Arbor, MI

    Copyright 2017 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

  • School Library Journal

    October 1, 2017

    When Ginny Moon was nine, she was removed from her abusive mother Gloria's custody and placed in foster care. Before she left, however, she put Baby Doll in a suitcase located in Gloria's apartment to keep her toy safe. Now Ginny is 14 and has been adopted by a loving couple who help her deal with her autism. But she is tormented by concern for Baby Doll. Is Ginny's cherished possession still in the suitcase? Her well-meaning parents have repeatedly offered to get her a new doll, which only exacerbates the teen's isolation and despair. Ginny's first-person narration reveals the gulf between her rich internal life and her ability to communicate with the outside world. Misunderstood and at odds with those around her, Ginny begins her quest to rescue Baby Doll while seemingly oblivious to the protections in place that prevent her from returning to Gloria, creating turmoil within her new family. Like any tale with an unreliable narrator, the book relies on details that gradually coalesce and make sense. Ludwig's debut novel incorporates his personal experience as the adoptive father of a teen with autism. The result is an enthralling, suspenseful, and heartfelt work. VERDICT A go-to choice for those seeking fresh, compelling storytelling, particularly those fascinated by Mark Haddon's now-classic The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time.-Diane Colson, formerly at City College, Gainesville, FL

    Copyright 2017 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

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Ginny Moon
A Novel
Benjamin Ludwig
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