I carried this book around my school as I read it. When they saw the front cover, people gave me interesting comments. “That’s a really good book!” or “I’ve met Sarah Dessen. Do you know she actually lives in North Carolina?” I had heard so much praise for this book, and I had really high expectations for it, but when I read it, I admit, I wasn’t that impressed.
Basically, it’s about this girl called Ruby who lives with her mother. Then, one day when she comes home, her mother isn’t there anymore. She starts to live by herself in her house, doing her mom’s old job and paying off the bills. But then, her secret is found out and she is forced to live with her long-lost sister (who apparently hasn’t contacted her in a while) and her sister’s wealthy husband. She is given luxury and a chance to go to college. But, she somehow can’t accept any of it. People try to help her, but she pushes them away – all except Nate, the hot guy who lives next door. I guess this was the part when the book got a bit cliché and I could guess the ending.
I’m not saying that everything was predictable. There was a surprise in the middle about the guy named Nate that I didn’t expect. And I adored the different characters and their personalities, like Olivia and Gervais. Dessen’s writing style is amazing – it’s just the story that I was a little disappointed about. But I really liked the whole underlying theme of the lock and the key, and I loved how she tied it into the story–very creative.
I would rate this book maybe a 3 out of 5 stars, not to be too harsh. It was content that mostly got a low score. The book seemed to go on forever…it was just day after day after day. I got a bit bored in the middle, but overall it was okay.
To request this book from the Wake County Library system, click here.