Book Review: Ginny Moon by Benjamin Ludwig

GINNY MOON stole my heart! This is the story of Ginny, a 14-year-old autistic girl living with her Forever Parents after being in the foster system for a few years. But Ginny can’t seem to let go of her past, which is impacting her ability to move forward with her new family. I don’t want to give away too much of the story because the way it unfolds is simply brilliant—because we’re in Ginny’s head we empathize with her, but we also see and understand what she doesn’t, including the actions and reactions of the other characters.

Ginny’s voice feels at once intimate and distant, but definitely authentic. Not only that, all the secondary characters—Ginny’s Forever Parents, her birth parents, her teachers, her therapist, her classmates—are complex and realistic, too.

Fun fact about me: before starting med school I worked as an aide in a special ed classroom. So it’s perhaps no surprise that my favorite scenes were with Ginny and her classmates and teammates on her Special Olympics basketball team. Each kid feels like a true individual—with their own voice and personality. I LOVED their conversations.

If my review so far has given you the impression that this is some kind of saccharine novel about “special kids”, let me be clear: this is a complex, thoughtful, at times heartbreaking, and totally unique coming-of-age story about a character you won’t easily forget. It reminded me of Eleanor Oliphaunt, tragic backstory and all. Highly recommended!

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