By Sarah Crossan

Seventeen-year-old Joe hasn’t seen his brother in ten years. Ed didn’t walk out on the family, not exactly. It’s something more brutal.

Ed’s locked up — on death row.

Now his execution date has been set, and the clock is ticking. Joe is determined to spend those last weeks with his brother, no matter what other people think … and no matter whether Ed committed the crime. But did he? And does it matter, in the end?

What value do you place on life? What can you forgive? And just how do you say goodbye?

Blog Discussion:   Joe struggles to come to terms not just with his brother’s death sentence, but also with the nagging worry that he might come to a similar end. Why does Joe believe he might follow in his brothers footsteps?

Don’t forget: In the box for Name, type in your first name, last initial, English teacher’s name, period you have English, and your school (all in a row with no spaces or punctuation). It will look like this: HarryPDumbledore6Hogwarts

If you liked Moonrise try Reading:

  • Rikers High By Paul Volponi
  • Serpent King By Jeff Zentner
  • No Choirboy By Susan Kuklin
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Rating: 3.7/10 (11 votes cast)

6 thoughts on “Moonrise

  1. I thought that moonrise was a really good book and it taught me a lot. I would say that Joe had a lot of complex emotions because he wanted to be with his brother Ed but Ed has never been there for him. Everyone in Joe’s life has left except for his sister Angela and he has been there for everyone when they needed him. He realizes that this doesn’t matter and that he just needs to forgive and forget and spend all the time he has to spend with his brother. During the story they talk about how they shouldn’t expect anything to change but they did and even during the story I had hope too. I know this might sound bad but I think that all of this happened for a reason because he go to meet Nell when he went down to Texas and he got to be alone for a minute and think without everyone there. I think that Ed wasn’t guilty and I truly think that he was innocent but this book just shows awarness for the innocent people in jail and on death row. Overall this was a really good book and I enjoyed it a lot.

  2. I don’t exactly know how to answer the discussion question. However, Moonrise was a pretty good book. Not exactly my favorite, but it was good enough to keep me captivated in the story. I really loved the development of character in Joe. It was nice watching him change and seeing how what happened to Ed impacted his life. You can tell how bad Joe’s, Angela’s, and Ed’s life was before everything happened. And it was truly heartbreaking to watch them go through it. Nell was definitely an important character to be in Joe’s life. He truly needed someone to keep him grounded and I feel like Nell definitely allowed him to be himself. Overall, this was a decently good book, though kind of hard to understand sometimes because of the way it was written, and it definitely causes a few tears.

  3. Joe feels as though he’s head down the same path as his brother because he comes from the same place, the same backstory. Even though he thinks he’s headed down the same path I don’t believe he will sure he has committed some petty robberies but he also has a job and is trying to become a better person. he just wants to be like his brother who I don’t believe deserved to die.

  4. The book Moonrise is about a kid named Joe who learned that his brother Ed is scheduled to be executed. Joe is determined to spend the last days of Ed’s life with him. So Joe left his home in Arlington and went to Wakeling, TX, since that is where the crime happened. Overall, the book talks about how Ed is being mistreated by the justice system and Ed is not getting a fair chance. However, this book blames the justice system for their problems, rather than themselves. First of all, they did not get a lawyer at the beginning after Ed got arrested. Second, Ed should not have given a confession without a lawyer being present. Now some may say that Ed did not know any of this, but it is the job of an informed citizen, and especially someone with a drivers license, since this event started out as a traffic stop, to know their rights, and Ed is no different. One more thing, in a interview with the author, the author said that she purposely crafted the ending/fate of Ed in order to make the audience feel a certain way, which is that the justice system is broken. So this reduced the credibility of the story to show what actually happens in this type of situation in the real world. In conclusion, this story is just to convey the authors political beliefs about the death penalty and the justice system, rather than telling a good story. I give this book a 1/10 stars.

  5. In the start of the story I wasn’t sure I was going to be into the book very much, but as the book progressed, page by page, I kept going and became hooked. I ended up actually really liking this book and I believe it had such a deep message that was portrayed throughout. The book teaches us that sometimes things come to unexpected and undeserved endings, and I believe that’s exactly why Joe couldn’t help but think that he could possibly end up with the same fate as his brother, because of just how unfair life can be sometimes. Also, Joe and Ed had grown up very close to each other, and Joe had probably adopted some of Ed’s ways of living, which maybe is another reason Joe lead himself to believe that he might follow in his brother’s footsteps. However, I feel that Joe seems to have a decent head on his shoulders and knows that he won’t ever let himself also end up like Ed, to make his brother proud. Overall a very meaningful and well-written book!

  6. I really liked Moonrise. At first, the book was a little slow but after the author started adding the details and Joe’s feelings its was hard to put the boom down. Joe’s feelings are very controversial, starting with him never wanting to be like his brother in one section, to him thinking about the wonderful memories he had with Ed. To Joe, Ed was like a father. I have never read a book from a “murder’s” brother point of view and it was very interesting.
    Joe feels like he will go down the same path as his brother because their family had many problems both financially, and socially. He never had a real mother of father to care for him or teach what was right or wrong. Joe really suffers mentally throughout this book and it surprises me as to how calm he is during the story.

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