BOOK REVIEW: The Man on the Moon by Chris Mc Geown

When I read it, The Man on the Moon by Chris Mc Geown was the last poetry book left on my “unread bookshelf.”  I was sad to run out of books in the genre, but reading this made me happy.

I found Chris Mc Geown’s fantastic work here on WordPress.  I reviewed his first book, Dead of Night, in March of 2019. 

WAY back, before that, in April 2018, his sister wanted to help publish this book and started a crowdfund.  I purchased a Kickstarter bundle that contained both books and a lovely postcard.

But, I’d been reading his work even before then.  If it’s not obvious already, I’ve loved it from the start.

Unfortunately, when writing this review, I found out that his WordPress page is now private. I hope he keeps writing and, if we want to read it, we’ll just have to buy the books.

The author signed this copy of his book, making it extra special.

No spoilers. Copyeditor nitpicking abound.

Read more: BOOK REVIEW: The Man on the Moon by Chris Mc Geown

When I started, I noticed some interesting formatting choices. Some pages have Arabic numbering, while others have Roman numerals.

Also, the poems are divided up into sections with the names of celestial events: “quarter moon,” “half moon,” “full moon,” and “eclipse.”

Much like his first book, I’m sure The Man on the Moon deserves multiple readings and concentrated study. I wonder why he made these decisions, and I miss talking about literary theory! (Man, #NerdLife!)

Just like his previous work, the author doesn’t use capitalization. The short, careful lines pack an incredible punch.

Uniquely, this book contains the first “two-page” poem of Mc Geown’s I’ve seen. Most of his work I read online, but wouldn’t fill a single page. His first book didn’t have any.

Regardless, the pages of this book aren’t very long – I doubt the average reader would complain!

Unfortunately, as I said in my review of Dead of Night, there were typos and spelling mistakes here too. They mostly seem to be homophone mistakes – Like, on page 34, where “bare” appears, when “bear” would be correct. Another, on page 82, reads “the sparrow / can hide / be he can’t […].”

Normally, two or three typos wouldn’t make a lick of difference. But, in a book of poetry focused on concise, sparse word choice, they stand out.

The subject matter is reminiscent of his earlier works. Night, beauty, pain, and mental health are topics of the author’s poems. Delightfully, I think he showed growth and maturing as an artist with more sexual, visceral subjects.

It broke my heart to see another typo in the stand out “adult” poem.

Final Score:

4 out of 5 stars!

I may have bought and/or read The Man on the Moon years ago. But I still remember the feelings it evoked and I enjoy them again writing this review.

Chris Mc Geown’s second book felt familiar, and the author is deftly able to pack short poems with imagery. It also showed a lot of growth in a relatively short public career.

I do hope that Mc Geown continues writing poetry and crafting each word with care. My only complaint the same as I noted in his first book – The mistakes detract from his work’s beauty. They draw the reader out of the head space he’s trying to create for them.

I think, if the author made his work more precise, it would mesmerize.


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