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Literature / Daughters of the Moon

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"You are a goddess, a daughter of the moon..."

“O mater Luna, regina nocia, adiuvo me nunc.”
“O Mother Moon, Queen of the Night, help me now!”

Daughters of the Moon is a series of early 2000's novels by Lynne Ewing. It's about four girls — later five — who find out they're Goddesses. Or, well, daughters of the goddess Selene who are destined to fight an ancient evil called the Atrox and its followers, which aims to devour all hope from the world. Each girl has her own Goddess powers as well: Vanessa, invisibility; Catty, time travel; Serena, telepathy; Jimena, premonition, and later Tianna, telekinesis. They must choose when they turn 17 whether to ascend and keep their powers or stay on Earth and lose their powers and memories of everything that happened.

There are 13 books in the series and each trades point of view between the girls and their friends:

    Books #1- 13 
  1. Goddess of the Night (2000): All Vanessa Cleveland has ever wanted is to be like everyone else and be able to do normal things — like kiss gorgeous Michael Saratoga without disappearing right in front of him. But Vanessa is different, and having to hide her secret makes leading a normal life impossible. Now Vanessa is being followed. She doesn’t know who is doing it. But she knows why. Her secret has finally been discovered.
  2. Into the Cold Fire (2000): Serena is being targeted by the dark forces of the Atrox. Her power to read minds is the key they need in order to turn the Daughters of the Moon into Followers. Jimena had a premonition that Serena is going to betray the girls. And she has never been wrong before...
  3. Night Shade (2001):Jimena was once the toughest chola in East L.A. No longer in a gang, she is still feared by many. Nothing scares Jimena. Nothing, that is, except the reappearance of Veto, who was once the love of her life. That terrifies her, because Veto was killed a year ago by a rival gang. Or was he? Jimena discovers that he has made a devil's bargain, which could cost both of them their lives.
  4. The Secret Scroll (2001):Catty has always wanted to find out who her birth mother was, and amazingly enough,she has the power to allow herself to do that. When Catty goes back in time,she not only manages to meet her mother,but she also inherits a secret scroll that is the key to destroying the Atrox once and for all. Catty will have to go head-to-head with the most ancient evil of all time-if she can live that long.
  5. The Sacrifice (2001):Stanton is in love with Serena. But it is a relationship that can never be. Stanton is committed to the Atrox, an ancient evil that has been around since the beginning of time. And Serena is a Daughter of the Moon, a force of good whose mission is to stop Stanton and his kind. Stanton has been trying to stay away from Serena, but now their secret is out. He will have to choose between the life he has always known and a love that could end up destroying the person he cares about most.
  6. The Lost One (2001):When Tianna wakes up one day, she doesn’t know where she is. And more important, she doesn’t know who she is. All she has is a note she found in her handwriting, warning the police that someone is trying to kill her. Soon Tianna realizes that she is not like other people. She has the power to move things with her mind. Then she notices Vanessa, Serena, and Jimena watching her. What is her connection to the Daughters of the Moon?
  7. Moon Demon (2002):Vanessa's sixteenth birthday is coming up. While most girls would be thrilled at the prospect, Vanessa dreads being one year closer to making the most important decision of her life. Now she is beginning to doubt everything she holds true—her friends, her relationship with Michael, and even her identity. Then she meets Hector, who is more exciting and dangerous than anyone else she knows. Through him, she learns about a side of herself that she never knew existed...
  8. Possesion (2002):Serena hasn't been herself lately. She has been having sudden lapses of memory and acting like a completely different person — one she doesn't like very much. To add to her confusion, she knows that someone has been following her. It all started the night an elderly woman helped her. Now Serena is beginning to wonder, who was that woman? And what has she done to Serena?
  9. The Choice (2003):In a reckless attempt to change the future, Catty drops Jimena into her troubled past — and into dangerous territory for the ex-gang member. As Jimena runs for her life, she is caught by the police and put in jail. There she is further threatened by a new type of Follower with a shape-changing power she is unable to resist. Her only choice is to break out of jail and hide out with a most unlikely ally—her old gang rival, Payasa. Together they have to save the other Daughters of the Moon before Jimena’s most terrifying premonition comes true.?
  10. The Tailsman (2003):Maggie is running out of time on this earth. And before she can name her successor, she reflects on the incredible, age-old journey that brought her to where she is. As a girl in ancient Athens, her father was a great warrior and leader of men. However, it was Maggie, known then as Penelope, who chose to battle the greatest enemy of all-the Atrox. After seeing an innocent man succumb to the Atrox and his shadowy followers, she takes a vow to help cleanse the world of its evil. But in doing so, she may have to forego the love of the great soldier, Hector, and lose her sister to the dark side.
  11. The Prophecy (2004):Catty almost has her hands on the Scroll and its power to destroy the Atrox, but time is running out. Anyone who sets foot near the cursed parchment will die, and it's about to go on display at the local art museum. Before Catty can steal it, the Scroll is hand delivered to her by a surprising messenger ...but this gift has strings. In return she must travel to the dark world of Nefandus to finally meet her father, a member of the Atrox's inner circle. There, he awaits her with a tempting proposal. Will Catty succumb to her dark heritage?
  12. The Becoming (2004):Lately, Tianna has been feeling unsettled, and she can't understand why — she has a great boyfriend, good friends, and, for once, a loving foster home. But still, she can't shake the thought that something, or someone, is after her. At a skateboarding competition she runs into two of her most feared enemies, Justin and Mason. Only now, they claim they've come to help Tianna — to warn her of her becoming. She has no idea what they mean, but deep down, Tianna senses herself changing. She knows that every Daughter has a dark side, but is hers threatening to overtake?
  13. The Final Eclipse (2007):Vanessa and Serena are prisoners in Nefandus, where the Atrox plans to capture their souls and make them Followers. Vanessa escapes just in time, but without Serena. Back in L.A., Jimena recalls an ancient prophecy that could spell disaster for Vanessa on her seventeenth birthday. Now Vanessa is faced with a crucial choice: save herself, or save Serena. In the thrilling conclusion to the Daughters of the Moon series, Vanessa, Catty, Serena, and Jimena face their final battle against the evil Atrox. But in protecting the world will the Daughters end up losing one another?

This series provides examples of:

  • Action Girl: All the daughters qualify.
  • A Day in the Limelight: The Sacrifice is from Stanton's POV, while The Talisman is from Maggie's.
  • Age Without Youth: When the Atrox grant's Maggie's wish for immortality, it tricks her by not giving her eternal youth. Thankfully, Selene gives her a potion that can temporarily reverse the aging process.
  • All Girls Want Bad Boys - When Serena falls for Stanton, who is a follower of the Atrox and later becomes Prince of Darkness.
  • Alpha Bitch: Morgan. Corrine later on.
    • Cassandra on the followers' side.
  • And I Must Scream: Being immortal but always aging comes to mind, as well as people captured and being forced to work for the Atrox.
  • Anti Anti Christ: Tianna was created to serve the Atrox and bear his child. She decides she'd rather not.
  • Another Dimension: Nefandus.
  • Artifact of Doom: The Secret Scroll .
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  • Ascended Extra: Arguably Catty in Goddess of the Night. She starts out as Vanessa's friend with time-traveling powers and ends up as a fellow daughter by the end of the book.
  • Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence: When the daughters turn seventeen, they either give up their memories and powers, or vanish, possibly becoming guardian spirits.
  • Battle Ballgown: The girls tend to throw down while dolled up.
  • Be Careful What You Wish For: Maggie and Catty's mother both wish for immortality, but they forgot to ask to be perpetually young.
  • Because Destiny Says So: Maggie dies due to attempting to destroy the Atrox herself, as that's not her destiny. Destiny is rather touchy that way.
  • Beast and Beauty: Serena, a Goddess, being with Stanton, a messenger of evil.
  • Belligerent Sexual Tension: Jimena and Collin until the third book.
  • Big Good: Selene. Although mentioned throughout the series, she finally appears once during the last book.
  • Big Brother Worship: Collin, Serena's older brother. Justified as they've been close since their mother left them.
  • Bittersweet Ending: The Atrox is defeated, Vanessa lives to make her final decision, and Jimena will go on to lead the next generation of Daughters of the Moon. On the other hand, Tianna dies at the end of book twelve when she destroys the Atrox's human form, Catty is killed destroying the Atrox, Serena decides to stay with Stanton in Nefandus after the portal shuts permanently without any way to return back, Vanessa no longer remembers her time as a daughter due to her decision, and Adamantis's spirit is now loose on earth.
  • Bittersweet 17: The Daughters' seventeenth birthday is when they must make their choice.
  • Blessed with Suck / Cursed with Awesome: The main cast does get magical powers, which is awesome. On the other hand, there's that whole ultimate evil thing that won't leave them alone...
  • The Chosen One: Catty is this in regards to the Secret Scroll.
  • Can't Stay Normal: Even though Jimena gives up her memories and powers, she turns out to be the reincarnation of Maggie's old mentor, and gets dragged right back in.
  • Childhood Friend: Vanessa and Catty are this to each other.
  • Coolest Club Ever: Planet Bang is the girl's go-to spot throughout the series. The followers tend to hang out at another club called The Dungeon
  • Cool Pet: Wally the raccoon for Serena
  • Costume Porn: There's plenty of great early 2000's fashion and clubbing outfits on display, but the real shoutout goes to the goddess outfits that the daughters dress into and wear during the climax of each book. The series takes what would be slightly over-the-top party wear and makeup and turns them into something otherworldly and magical.
  • Dangerous Seventeenth Birthday: Actually, either completely takes away a normal life, or leaves the person with nothing but a normal life. In theory.
  • Den of Iniquity: Heaven's Ballroom from Moon Demon. It's where Hector had been finding and kidnapping his victims in order to lure the daughters to him.
  • Darker and Edgier: From the end of The Choice onward, the books take a more serious turn. Jimena gives up her memories and powers, the girls lose Maggie, there's a more rushed attitude towards solving the secret scroll, there's more sexual innuendo, Tianna's death and the coming of the final eclipse
  • Deal with the Devil: Any deal made with the Atrox is this.
  • Disappeared Dad: Quite common for most of the Daughters:
    • Vanessa's father was a stuntman who was killed in a helicopter crash when she was five.
    • Jimena's father is never even mentioned, even though her mother's backstory is explained briefly.
    • In Catty's case, Kendra was already single when she adopted her and decided to not date in order to keep Catty's supposed alien origins a secret. Her birth father on the other hand turns out to be quite alive...
    • Tiana's father and mother were murdered when she was a child. Currently, her foster mother, Mary, happens to be single and shows no interest in dating.
    • Averted with Serena and Collin, in their case it's their mother who's gone.
  • Drives Like Crazy: Vanessa is this once she gets her license.
    • Jimena has her moments.
  • The Fifth Ranger: Tianna joined the group latest after they established themselves as one.
  • Five-Man Band:
  • For Halloween, I Am Going as Myself: In The Sacrifice, Stanton is approached by a dying regulator who needs to be escorted somewhere safe. Thankfully, it happens to be Halloween night so everyone thinks that it's a really elaborate costume.
  • Gratuitous Spanish - Jimena does this constantly.
  • Green-Eyed Monster: Vanessa feels this way towards Tianna and Catty's blossoming friendship in Moon Demon, which is amplified when the rest of the girls start to avoid her too. Her feelings go away when it turns out that they were all busy planning a surprise party for her.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: The Atrox created Tianna to serve him. She partially seals him/it instead.
  • I Choose to Stay: Serena remains with Stanton in the alternate dimension after defeating the Atrox.
  • I Just Want to Be Normal: Before the series and in the first book, Vanessa would rather not have her invisibility powers. She grows to appreciate them.
  • Ill Boy: Todd, Tianna's foster brother.
  • In-Series Nickname: There's a couple:
    • "The Queen of Weird" for Serena, although this could just be Morgan trying to make her look bad in front of Collin.
    • "Risky" for Jimena, her old gang nickname.
    • Payasa herself (It means clown). Her real name is Graciela.
  • Interspecies Adoption: What Kendra thought she was originally doing with Catty. She found her as a child walking alone in the desert and unable to remember anything except for a crash and an explosion. Kendra assumed that Catty was an alien child who crashed into earth and adopted her to protect her from government officials.
  • Jerk Jock: Jerome has shades of this.
  • Laser-Guided Amnesia: Tianna is introduced with this, unable to remember anything about herself. She even states that she knows what coffee tastes like, but doesn't know if she likes it or not.
  • Lethal Chef: Tianna avoids Mary's cooking since it's described as tasting like either rotten fish or cat food. Turns out that it was a smart decision to not eat any of it ...
  • Lipstick and Load Montage: At least in the first two books, the heroines have a detailed sequence of putting on beautiful clothes and makeup before going to the showdown with the Atrox. Justified, as it works like battle paint - the psychological preparation is very important in a battle.
  • Love Makes You Crazy: Jerome after Serena keeps rejecting him, which leads him to become a follower to get her.
  • Love Redeems - Stanton because his love for Serena keeps him from being totally evil when he's promoted to Prince of Darkness
  • Magical Accessory: Somewhat averted with the moon necklaces as it's often stressed that it's only a symbol of the power within each daughter. However, it can be used to channel light from energy attacks and the charm will burn any followers who touch them.
    • Serena also gains Hekate's orb later and Jimena gets the Medusa stone to replace her amulet after her 17th birthday.
  • Magical Incantation: “O mater Luna, regina nocia, adiuvo me nunc.” is the most common one, but there's usually a phrase in each book and is meaningful to the conflict:
    • Id quod factum est, infectum esse potest - What has been done can be undone (Into the Cold Fire)
    • Quae tibi nocere possunt, etiam te adiuvare possunt - What can harm you, can also help you (Night Shade)
    • Demere peronam tuam atque ad dominum tuum se referre - Take off your mask and return to your master (The Secret Scroll)
    • Protegas et Deleas - Protect and Destroy (The Sacrifice)
    • Leva velamen - Lift the Veil (The Possession)
    • Si sine misercordia oppugnabis, tenebrae fies - If I attack without compassion, I’ll become the darkness (The Choice)
    • Cum oculus daemonis coniveat, ini in terram vetitam - When the demon eye blinks, enter the forbidden land (The Prophecy)
  • Make Way for the Princess: happens in Into the Cold Fire when Morgan walks down the hallway, interrupting a moment between Serena and Zahi.
  • Mentor Occupational Hazard: Maggie falls prey to this.
  • Missing Mom: Serena and Colin's mom abandoned the family when they were young and hasn't been seen since.
    • It's mentioned by Jimena that her mother left her due to drug addictions, which is why she lives with her abuela. Her father is never mentioned.
    • Catty at first, although she finally meets her for a brief time in book four.
  • Morality Chain and Morality Pet: Serena and Vanessa to Stanton.
  • Muggle Foster Parents:
    • Catty was raised by a normal woman. Her mother was a Daughter and her father was in the enemy's inner circle.
    • Tianna's parents were killed when she was young, and was shuffled among foster parents.
  • Must Not Die a Virgin: Vanessa goes through this in the last book, between the end of the world and her possible ascension.
  • Naïve Everygirl: Vanessa in Goddess of the Night. Serena and Jimena have been dealing with this goddess business for awhile and are happy to show her the ropes.
  • No Eye in Magic: Looking into a follower's eyes is usually what allows them to enter someone's mind.
  • Offscreen Breakup: Vanessa and Michael in book 4. It's resolved by the end.
  • Parental Abandonment: Catty's raised by a foster mother. Turns out both her parents are alive, but serve the bad guy, though her mother came to regret it.
  • Physical God: Essentially what the main cast is.
  • Power Crystal: There are rumors of a "Black Diamond" that has the ability to defeat the Atrox. Then Catty discovers that her birth name 'Atertra' means "Black Diamond"....
  • The Power of Love: Where the Daughters get their powers from.
  • The Reveal - Finding out that there is a fifth Daughter, Tianna.
  • Really 700 Years Old: Maggie was mortal back in Athens a couple millenia ago.
    • Stanton was born in late 13th century Europe when he was turned against his will.
    • A smaller example is Murray, a follower introduced in The Sacrifice. He was turned during the 1950's, and still dresses like a greaser in the present day.
  • Real Place Background: The series takes place in Los Angeles and while there are some well-known locations mentioned (like the Hollywood Bowl), there's plenty of small retail locations that are name-dropped, such as Polka Dots and Moonbeams, Retail Slut, and Aardvark's Odd Ark.
  • Rotating Protagonist: Each of the thirteen books follow the POV of one of the daughters, which changes in each book:
    • Books 1,7 and 13: Goddess of the Night, Moon Demon, The Final Eclipse follow Vanessa
    • Books 2 and 8: Into the Cold Fire and Possession follow Serena
    • Books 3 and 9: Night Shade and The Choice follow Jimena
    • Books 4 and 11: The Secret Scroll and The Prophecy follow Catty
    • Books 6 and 12: The Lost One and The Becoming follow Tiana
    • Book 5: The Sacrifice follows Stanton
    • Book 10: The Talisman follows Maggie
  • Rummage Sale Reject: Morgan negatively describes Serena's fashion style as this. Catty and Vanessa like it.
  • Sealed Inside a Person-Shaped Can: Inverted. The Atrox is actually stronger in a physical form and weaker as pure shadow.
  • Secret Legacy: Every member of the group with the exception of Vanessa has this besides being Daughters of the Moon.
  • Secret Test of Character: When Stanton offers to take Vanessa to where the followers are holding Catty prisoner, Maggie refuses the offer and tells Vanessa not to go, as it will be the dark of the moon then and her powers will be weakened. Vanessa defies her and manages to rescue Catty, along with Serena and Jimena's help. It turns out that doing this was a test from Maggie to see if Vanessa was willing to risk everything to do what was right.
  • Skipping School: Done occasionally by the girls but it's usually done because of something Atrox related.
  • Spinoff: Sons Of The Dark was told from the perspective of some male characters.
  • Something Completely Different: The Tailsman takes place in ancient Greece when Maggie was a teenager.
  • Stalker with a crush - Stanton to Serena during Into the Cold Fire and to Vanessa in Goddess of the Night.
    • Cassandra was this to Stanton in The Sacrifice.
  • Surfer Dude: Collin
  • Take a Third Option: Serena can give up her memories and powers, become a guardian spirit, or become a goddess of the night. She takes the third one.
  • Took a Level in Jerkass: Corinne. In book six she is introduced when she meets Tianna, shows her around school and is seen as a generally nice person. When we meet her again in book twelve, she's rude and insults Tianna whenever they meet, with the excuse that she stole Derek from her.
  • Tomato in the Mirror: For Tianna, Catty and Serena.
  • True Companions: The daughters aren't related, but often risk their lives for one another.
  • Uncanny Valley Girl: Tianna notes that she's incredibly, unnaturally beautiful, which helps her realize just what she is.
  • Urban Fantasy
  • Wake Up, Go to School, Save the World
  • We Are Not Going Through That Again:
    "Wow, what an adventure," Catty said. "Let's go back and do it again."
    "No!" Vanessa grabbed Catty's arm. She looked at her watch. The hands were gratefully still.
  • Weirdness Censor: Often used to explain why the normal world can't recognize the evil around them. Maggie explains that it's easier for a person to think of a passerby's glowing eyes as a trick of the light rather then noticing that said passerby's eyes are fluorescent.
    • When Vanessa first hears about the daughters and witnesses Maggie de-aging, she theorizes that Maggie must have spiked her tea with something.
    • When Morgan becomes a follower later on, her parents think that she's becoming delusional and put her in a hospital for troubled teens.
    • Into the Cold Fire: While Catty time travels solo to the previous night, Vanessa, Serena, and Jimena wait at a crowded, outdoor restaurant for her. All of a sudden Catty appears by falling above them, soaking wet and covered with seaweed. She's able to pass this off to everyone around them by claiming to be a promotion for an upcoming film called 'Ocean Deep'.
  • We Used to Be Friends: Jimena and Payasa used to be close until joining rival gangs drove them apart.
  • Year Outside, Hour Inside: Time works this way in Nefandus. In one instance, the daughters are there for what feels like a few hours. When they exit, they learn that nine days have passed.

"No one starts the party without us."
"Yeah. 'Cause we are the party!."


Example of: