GINNY MOON

Benjamin Ludwig

Meet Ginny Moon. She’s mostly your average teenager—she plays flute in the high school band, has weekly basketball practice, and reads Robert Frost poems in English class. But Ginny is autistic. And so what’s important to her might seem a bit…different: starting every day with exactly nine grapes for breakfast, Michael Jackson, her baby doll, and crafting a secret plan of escape.

After being traumatically taken from her abusive birth mother and moved around to different homes, Ginny has finally found her “forever home”—a safe place with parents who will love and nurture her. This is exactly what all foster kids are hoping for.

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Meet Ginny Moon. She’s mostly your average teenager—she plays flute in the high school band, has weekly basketball practice, and reads Robert Frost poems in English class. But Ginny is autistic. And so what’s important to her might seem a bit…different: starting every day with exactly nine grapes for breakfast, Michael Jackson, her baby doll, and crafting a secret plan of escape.

After being traumatically taken from her abusive birth mother and moved around to different homes, Ginny has finally found her “forever home”—a safe place with parents who will love and nurture her. This is exactly what all foster kids are hoping for. But Ginny has other plans. She’ll steal and lie and exploit the good intentions of those who love her—anything it takes to get back what’s missing in her life. She’ll even try to get herself kidnapped.

Told in an extraordinary and wholly original voice, Ginny Moon is at once quirky, charming, heartbreaking, and poignant. It’s a story of a journey, about being an outsider trying to find a place to belong and about making sense of a world that just doesn’t seem to add up.

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  • Park Row Books
  • Hardcover
  • May 2017
  • 9780778330165

Buy the Book

$26.99

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About Benjamin Ludwig

A life-long teacher of English and writing, Benjamin Ludwig lives in New Hampshire with his family. He holds an MAT in English Education and an MFA in Writing. Shortly after he and his wife married they became foster parents and adopted a teenager with autism. Ginny Moon is his first novel, which was inspired in part by his conversations with other parents at Special Olympics basketball practices.

Author Website

Praise

May 2017 Library Reads Pick
May 2017 Indie Next Pick

“Ludwig’s excellent debut is both a unique coming-of-age tale and a powerful affirmation of the fragility and strength of families…. Ludwig brilliantly depicts the literal-minded and inventive Ginny—whose horrifying past and valiant hope for the future are slowly unveiled—and the alternately selfish, sympathetic, and compassionate adults who would do anything to get Ginny to choose their love.”Publishers Weekly, starred review

Ginny Moon is a brilliant debut. In asking us to identify with a developmentally delayed, autistic teenage girl and her peculiar obsession, Ben Ludwig set himself an Olympic degree of difficulty, but he succeeds with the extraordinary Ginny Moon. I was unable to put the book down as I willed her to overcome the obstacles within and around her.”Graeme SimsionNew York Times bestselling author of The Rosie Project

“Fresh, funny, heartbreaking and real, you will love this novel. Sometimes an author comes along who captures the moment in its complexity and fierce detail, illuminating the world in a way that changes readers perceptions and opens our hearts to understanding. Ginny Moon brings you inside the experience of autism, not only what it must be like from the outside, but how it must feel from within. Benjamin Ludwig paints in every color with ferocity and ultimately, joy. I was galvanized by this read. You will be, too.” —Adriana TrigianiNew York Times bestselling author of The Shoemaker’s Wife 

Discussion Questions

1. Ginny’s lack of emotional attachment to the people in her life makes her seem cold and unfriendly. Do you consider her to be an unfriendly person? How do you think Ginny might define the word friend?

2. Do you think the Moons acted reasonably with regard to Ginny before and after Wendy was born? If you had to step into the shoes of Brian and Maura Moon, and perceived your adopted child as a possible threat to your biological child, what would you do?

3. What is Ginny’s greatest personal strength? At what point(s) were you disappointed with her?

4. What stereotypes surround people on the autism spectrum? To what extent does Ginny fulfill or defy such stereotypes?