Moonlight and Oranges

Romance, Young Adult

By Elise Stephens

Publisher : Booktrope Publishing

ABOUT Elise Stephens

Elise Stephens
Elise Stephens received the Eugene Van Buren Prize for Fiction from the University of Washington in 2007, where she also received her degree in Creative Writing.  Moonlight and Oranges is her first novel and was a quarter-finalist for the 2011 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award.   She lives More...



Lorona Connelly is ready for a change from her carefully planned, bookish life. When sparks fly at a costume party, she embraces a chance for romance with the handsome Kestrin Feather. However, she quickly realizes that even love and destiny may not be enough to overcome the reality of an overprotective mother-in-law and Kestrin's long, tarnished history of relationships. When Lorona's curiosity leads her to Kestrin's journal, doubt plagues them both with insecurities and threatens the relationship. Can true love overcome the odds, or was their whirlwind romance just a frivolous crush?

Author Elise Stephens shares a journey of young love, fate, and wounded trust in the story of Lorona and Kestrin, a couple who must learn to overcome their fears to share a life together.

A modern retelling of the Cupid and Psyche love story from Greek myth.


6 of 6 people found the following review helpful:
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful story, November 11, 2011
Elise Stephens' Moonlight & Oranges swept me away on a delectable journey of the senses and soul.

This can't-put-it-down novel tells the story of the romance and character growth of two adorably imperfect lovers, Kestrin and Lorona. Stephens' story takes a refreshing turn from typical love stories by following the myth of Cupid and Psyche. Kestrin and Lorona know at once they're destined, but differences and shattered trust drive a wedge into their relationship. The ensuing romance and adventures are more exciting than most real-life dramas, but the deeper themes of rebuilding trust and finding purpose are universal, especially in this age of jaded relationships and fleeting thrills.

If you like romance, if you love satisfying endings, if you know that real life is not always how it's painted in fiction, you should read this story. You'll relate to it. And you'll enjoy it too.

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful:
4.0 out of 5 stars Not a perfect work, but an enjoyable one, November 11, 2011
I should not have liked this book. I'm not a fan of romance. I don't read a lot of YA books. I read it because of a friend's referral. And when I learned that it was based on the Greek mythology of Cupid and Psyche, a story that had been masterfully retold by one of my favorite authors, it seemed doomed to a fast perusal followed by a quick dislike.

What I found was not a perfect work, but an enjoyable one, filled with wit and humor and characters that are quirky yet believable, and set in a Seattle that is both familiar and mythologized. It is not a regurgitation of an old story but the product of an author passionately exploring themes of love, betrayal, and what it really means to say "I do". The elements of the Greek myth are clearly present, though the casual reader can enjoy the story without ever knowing of its origin.

If you're a Seattle native, you'll discover the local references like delightful Easter eggs, but the story transcends its geography. If you're looking for a Harlequin romance, you'll probably want to search elsewhere, as this is the mature work of an author who deftly handles her prose and descriptions, and she will force you to think about your life and your relationships as she explores the rocky crags of marriage in a tactful way, without a wisp of steam.

I would recommend this book to my sisters, my mother, and any of my women friends, though I won't be buying it for my nephew. On the other hand, I believe that any men, who want to learn about the women in their life (especially if he is married or thinking about getting married), could read this and find an enjoyable place to do so.