Lock & Key – Sarah Dessen

15396970Lock and Key by Sarah Dessen

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Publisher
Publication Date: April 22nd, 2008
Publisher: Viking’s Children’s Books
Point of View: 1st Person & Feminine
Recommended Age: 12+
Pacing: Slow
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Contemporary Romance, Family


Unlock your heart and the rest will follow.

Ruby is used to taking care of herself.

But now that she’s living with her sister, she’s got her own room, she’s going to a good school, and her future looks bright.

Plus there’s an adorable boy next door.

Can Ruby learn to open her heart and let him in?


The reason why Sarah Dessen’s books make me smile, laugh and cry—and usually make my day—is because they are so genuine.

From the dialog to the writing to the characters to the emotional experiences, everything screams authentic and realistic. That makes it easy to fall for the protagonists incredibly fast and deeply.

The unfortunate thing about Sarah Dessen’s books is that if you summarize them, you realize they are not very original. With her, the originality is not in the main plot—girl who moves in with her long-lost sister and falls for rich guy next door—but in the little events that make the main plot. This is why I struggle when I summarize her books and sometimes don’t even bother.

If you’ve read more than one book by her, you’re going to realize that there are elements that come back each time. So far—and I’ve read six books from her—I’ve noticed a few, one of them being that she likes to include businesses.

Sometimes it’s a pizzeria, sometimes it’s a wedding planning business, here it’s a jewellery store, a delivery business and an online site. You learn some things about management when you read her books and I love that.

Her main characters have the same voices. I definitely think she should vary her protagonists—they just all feel the same. Very nice girls—usually with a hidden past—and it works, but it’s redundant if you read her books back to back. She should also include diversity once in a while, because there never is, or so.

But what can I say. I just adore her. To me she’s like the Nicholas Sparks for YA books. I’m eager to read more.


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4 thoughts on “Lock & Key – Sarah Dessen

  1. I agree with what you said about Sarah Dessen. Even though she isn’t exactly original, I can’t help but continue to go back to her again and again. Excellent review!


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