#BookReview: Carolina Moonset by Matt Goldman @goldman_matthew @NetGalley

Hi everyone! Today, I have a book review for a great read from an author new to me, Matt Goldman. Many thanks to a couple of blogging friends, Mae Clair and Joan Hall, who introduced me to this book via their great reviews. I hopped on over to NetGalley and requested a review copy, which I was delighted to receive. The book releases tomorrow. I have review posts scheduled up to early July, so today you get a bonus post to help promote its release! Here’s my review >>>

About the Book:

book cover for Carolina Moonset by Matt Goldman

Both suspenseful and deeply moving, Carolina Moonset is an engrossing novel about family, memories both golden and terrible, and secrets too dangerous to stay hidden forever, from New York Times bestselling and Emmy Award-winning author, Matt Goldman.

Joey Green has returned to Beaufort, South Carolina, with its palmettos and shrimp boats, to look after his ailing father, who is succumbing to dementia, while his overstressed mother takes a break. Marshall Green’s short-term memory has all but evaporated, but, as if in compensation, his oldest memories are more vivid than ever. His mind keeps slipping backwards in time, retreating into long-ago yesterdays of growing up in Beaufort as a boy.

At first this seems like a blessing of sorts, with the past providing a refuge from a shrinking future, but Joey grows increasingly anxious as his father’s hallucinatory arguments with figures from his youth begin to hint at deadly secrets, scandals, and suspicions long buried and forgotten. Resurfacing from decades past are mysteries that still have the power to shatter lives—and change everything Joey thought he knew.

Especially when a new murder brings the police to his door …



My Review:


A moving and engrossing read.

Thanks to NetGalley and Macmillan-Tor/Forge Books for this Advanced Review Copy.

I haven’t read this author before, but after seeing positive reviews around the blogosphere, I requested a review copy via NetGalley, and was thrilled to have the chance to read and review Carolina Moonset, which did not disappoint.

“When I saw my first palm tree, I almost died of disappointment.” … this opening line had me hooked. I loved the set-up and wanted to know more. The writer takes the reader immediately into a journey of reminiscence, love, loss, and letting go. I fell in love with the characters, who all felt visceral and real, and I connected with the predicament deeply.

I love a good mystery, especially one that happened decades ago and needs to be resolved in the here and now, as well as an in-the-present crisis to go along with it. This book certainly delivers that.

Joey’s dad has Lewy Body Demtentia, which leaves him with zero short-term recall and no idea what happened even a few seconds prior. He lives in the past, which he recalls vividly. Added to that, he also begins to hallucinate and hold conversations with people who are not there. When a prominent local businessman is shot dead, and the murder weapon is linked to Joey’s dad, things get a whole lot more serious.

I loved the style of writing, the characterisation, world building, and humour that runs throughout the narrative. Here are some lines I loved …

“I took a deep breath and inhaled forty years of pleasant memories from this place I loved.”

And …

“Running a company and parenting two teenagers was easier than parenting my parents.”

And …

“When it comes to matchmaking, my wife treats this town like one of her quilts. No tolerance for loose threads dangling all alone.”

The plot, pacing, and writing were excellently done, and I enjoyed this read immensely. The ending was well-rounded and satisfying. I shall be reading more of Matt Goldman for sure. Carolina Moonset gets a resounding five stars from me.


NOTE ON RATINGS: I consider a 3-star rating a positive review. Picky about which books I give 5 stars to, I reserve this highest rating for the stories I find stunning and which moved me.

4 STARS: I WOULD PULL AN ALL-NIGHTER — Go read this book.
3 STARS: IT WAS GOOD! — An okay read. Didn’t love it. Didn’t hate it.
2 STARS: I MAY HAVE LIKED A FEW THINGS —Lacking in some areas: writing, characterisation, and/or problematic plot lines.
1 STAR: NOT MY CUP OF TEA —Lots of issues with this book.

I’d love to hear what you think of this review. Thanks for stopping by 🙂


For anyone interested, here are the Amazon links …


UK … https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B08R8XRTB2/

US … https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B08R8XRTB2/

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Joan Hall

I’m so glad you enjoyed this one, Harmony. I think this one will probably be on my top ten list for the year.

Jan Sikes

Thanks for adding your thoughts to what Mae and Joan said about this book. I am definitely intrigued!

DG Kaye

Engrossing review Harmony. I’ve added this one to my TBR. Congrats to Matt! <3

Mae Clair

I’m so glad you enjoyed this book, Harmony. I thought it was outstanding, and like you, I will be reading Matt Goldman again! 🙂

D.L. Finn

Great review, Harmony 🙂 Rhis one sounds like a fascinating read.

V.M. Sang

A writer new to me. Thanks for introducing us to him. It sounds a good read.

Priscilla Bettis

Great review, Harmony. I enjoyed the quotes you pulled. I’ve heard nothing but good things about Carolina Moonset; congrats to Goldman!

john howell

Excellent review, Harmony. This one sounds like a good one.