Saturday, April 9, 2011

Sarah Dessen time!

Alright guys so I've got three different Sarah Dessen books to review. It would be repetitive to review them all separately so I'm just going to write one big post about them right here, right now.

What's a Sarah Dessen book? Well, I like to think of her as the Nicholas Sparks of young adult literature. Her books tend to be about love, relationships, family, friends, teen girls figuring out who they are, that kind of thing. Don't get them confused with surfacey romance novels. These books usual talk about deep feelings and important issues. Here's a little bit more about the three that I read:

Someone Like You - This books focuses on best friends Halley and Scarlett. Scarlett's boyfriend is killed in a motorcycle accident, then she realizes she's pregnant with his baby. Meanwhile, a popular boy is paying attention to shy Halley, which never happens. Can Halley handle a new boyfriend and still be there for Scarlett? I really enjoyed this book, Halley is a strong and likeable protagonist.

This Lullaby- I loved this one! Remy doesn't believe in love. How could she, after watching her mother go through husband after husband? But then Dexter comes along. He's different from all the other guys Remy's dated. Can she overcome her fear and learn to love before it is too late?

Dreamland- I didn't enjoy this one as much, but that wasn't because it's not good. It's really good- it just deals with deeper and heavier stuff. Caitlin is determined not to be like her sister, Cass. And when she meets Rogerson, he seems like the perfect way to step out of her sister's shadow. Soon Caitlin and Rogerson are in love- but what happens when that love becomes dangerous?

Bottom line- I enjoyed all of the books and would recommend each of them. However, my favorite Sarah Dessen book is still The Truth About Forever, and you can read my review of that by clicking here.

One last thing: Despite my love for Sarah Dessen books, there are a few things about them that bother me, and I feel compelled to mention them. First of all, almost all of her high school age characters smoke and drink, and often they do drugs and sleep around a lot too. Sometimes it works because it's part of the issues they are dealing with, or it fits in the story, but sometimes it's just not necessary. Maybe it's realistic, but still I don't feel like I could put any of her books in my classroom library. The second thing that bothers me isn't as easy to put my finger on... But all of her books feel sort of... dated. Or something. Granted some of them were written in the 90's (gosh, it feels weird to consider something written in the 90's old), but they just seem like maybe they take place more in a world that my parents grew up in, rather than the one I grew up in. Not that that is even a bad thing, but it just annoys me a little for some reason.

Despite my minor issues with her books, I would still suggest that if you haven't read a Sarah Dessen book before, you should give one a try. I hope to read more of her books soon, so keep checking back for more reviews!

1 comment:

  1. I've thought about your thoughts about those books seeming dated for a little while now. Well, since you wrote them and I read them... Hmm... And I didn't read any of the books you talked about. But I just mean in general... I remember when I was reading a Beverly Lewis novel a couple years ago and the main (non-Amish) character had a "smartphone" and I just thought that was so hokey and awkward. I always feel embarrassed or something when an author talks about a new technology. But I guess maybe I'll not feel that way in a few years? I'm rambling and its late, and we can talk about that later. But... anyway... I have some thoughts about this somewhere in my mind. I guess I mean... I would feel a book is set not in my time if it talks about writing letters as a efficient mode of communication, but I'll feel like its TOO modern if it talks about Facebook. I don't know. Ramble.