Friday, April 13, 2012

Book Review: Lock and Key by Sarah Dessen

Lock and Key by Sarah Dessen
Publisher: Penguin Audio
Publication date: April 2008
Length: 11 hrs, 14 min
Source: Audiobook from Library
For: Fun

Ruby is used to her mom disappearing for a while. It's just been her and her mom ever since her older sister Cora left and never looked back. But when her mom disappears permanently, Ruby finds herself sent to live with Cora and her husband. She isn't sure what to do with this new life; she's ready to leave it all behind, until she begins to understand just what she wants and what she might be able to do for the people around her.

Things I Liked:
I liked the story.  I like how Ruby just acts a certain way and believes certain things because of her past and how things have been in her life.  She doesn't trust people and she doesn't plan to stick around.  But as the book progresses, she learns and meets people and discovers there are things she wants to change, only she isn't sure how.  But she does change.  I think Dessen does this well, describing the way a person can change both their circumstances and the way they act.  The story has heart and you feel it plucking at your strings and you want to hug the characters and make it all better.  It's real and it's good.  And now I know why people like Sarah Dessen.  I listened to this one on my interminable commute and the narrator, Rebecca Soler, did a spanking good job portraying the so-don't-care teen voice - she was spot-on for Ruby.

Things I Didn't Like:
It moved rather slowly at times, so much that I almost gave up.  I wondered where it was heading, after she kind of gets in a new rut in her new life.  It seemed like there wasn't anywhere else for her to go.  But then it picked up again and I enjoyed it.  I'm sure I'll pick up another Dessen, though I'm generally not a fan of this kind of book.

Um, pretty much all Sarah Dessen books, from what I understand

s-factor: !@#$ 
plenty, though no f-bombs

mrg-factor: XX
a few incidents, nothing too descriptive

v-factor: none

Overall rating: ****

Is there a Sarah Dessen book I simply must read?

If you buy through my Amazon linkage, I will get a very small percentage


  1. I've yet to enjoy a Sarah Dessen book. :(

    1. Guess that means you don't have one to recommend :)

  2. You have to read Just Listen and The Truth About Forever! I have read all of Dessen's books except her newest one so those are the best two out of her collection of books. She was good when she started, then she got amazing, and Lock and Key was when she started to go back to being good at writing. Just Listen and The Truth About Forever were the period for her when she was really amazing at writing stories.

    I hope you enjoy them.
    Thanks for the great review on Lock and Key

    1. I've actually had several people tell me to read Just Listen, so I better do it. Thanks for the great tips - as a resident expert, I'd better take your advice :)


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