March 24, 2021
The Moonlight School Book Review
Inspired by the true events of the Moonlight Schools, this standalone novel from bestselling author Suzanne Woods Fisher brings to life the story that shocked the nation into taking adult literacy seriously.
About The Moonlight School
Born in those hills, Cora knows the plague of illiteracy. So does Brother Wyatt, a singing schoolmaster who travels through the hills. Involving Lucy and Wyatt, Cora hatches a plan to open the schoolhouses to adults on moonlit nights. The best way to combat poverty, she believes, is to eliminate illiteracy. But will the people come?
As Lucy emerges from a life in the shadows, she finds purpose; or maybe purpose finds her. With purpose comes answers to her questions, and something else she hadn’t expected: love.
Inspired by the true events of the Moonlight Schools, this standalone novel from bestselling author Suzanne Woods Fisher brings to life the story that shocked the nation into taking adult literacy seriously. You’ll finish the last page of this enthralling story with deep gratitude for the gift of reading.
The Moonlight School is a powerful tale that I could not put down. I am very passionate about reading and love to share this with others. Reading and education is a gift that can open doors for us. This book highlights the importance of literacy and it came as a shock to me that is was inspired by true events.
Lucy is a young, bright woman who has let her past cast a shadow on her life. She is timid and not really sure of herself, living only in her bubble with her Father and their wealth. When she travels to rural Rowan County to help her cousin, she is not prepared for the task ahead of her but she shows true strength and compassion. Her cousin, Cora, is in charge of the education and operation of many schools in her area that are plagued with poverty and beliefs that many urban dwellers do not understand. But Cora sees how special these people are – their kindness, strength, determination and love for others shines through. When we are exposed to how they have been taken advantage of because of their illiteracy, we understand why Cora is fighting so hard for them.
Following several events in the novel, Cora hatches an idea to help the adult community in their rural town – by providing schooling at nights for them (hence the name Moonlight Schools). While the idea is an excellent one, Cora and Lucy hold many fears for the schools. Will the adults in the community come? Will they have enough teachers? Can they overcome those in power who want to keep them illiterate?
The novel is well written and does the history behind the schools justice. It tells a powerful story of how these schools came to be and the importance. We see compassion, kindness, strength and forgiveness throughout the story. You hold the characters in this story close to your heart, my personal favourite being Lucy. I loved watching her evolve and grow in her personal strength throughout the novel as she was gently guided by Cora and Brother Wyatt. This is an excellent novel selection for all of us who love historical novels – a definite must read.
You can purchase a copy of this book on Amazon.
About the Author
Suzanne Woods Fisher is an award-winning, bestselling author of more than 30 books, including On a Summer Tide and On a Coastal Breeze, as well as the Nantucket Legacy, Amish Beginnings, The Bishop’s Family, The Deacon’s Family, and The Inn at Eagle Hill series, among other novels. She is also the author of several nonfiction books about the Amish, including Amish Peace and Amish Proverbs. She lives in California. Learn more at www.suzannewoodsfisher.com
Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in order to facilitate this review. All opinions expressed are my own.