Saturday, July 31, 2010

Lock and Key by Sarah Dessen

This is another Sarah Dessen installment. It's called Lock and Key. I've already read one book of hers, Just Listen which made quite the impression on me. First here's the synopsis:

What happens when your past is not just past, but wiped clean entirely? How do you figure out where you're going when you can't even claim where you've been? These were the questions that inspired Lock and Key. It's the story of a girl named Ruby who is abandoned by her mother and determined to make it on her own, even---and especially---when she is sent to live with her long-lost sister in a whole new world of privilege, family, and relationships. As Ruby learns, there's a big difference between being given help and being able to accept it. And sometimes, it takes reaching out to someone else to save yourself

This is a story about seventeen year old Ruby and her life. Now Ruby and her mother moved around the country a lot of times. So their lives are almost unpredictable sometimes, and in the story they currently lived in this old yellow farmhouse. So one day Ruby's mother disappears without any notice, and she doesn't come back for months. So Ruby was left on her own. She tried to ignore the fact that she's too young to be living on her own and then she eventually learned that her mother had abandoned her. So she tried to live on her own at the yellow house for a few months until her landlords found her and sent her off to live with her long-lost older sister, Cora. Ruby and Cora hadn't seen each other since Cora left for college, leaving her and her mother.

So that's basically where the story started with Roby narrating the whole plot. She's a girl with a lot of memories behind her, and they're usually not very warming memories. Somehow she's in this state of self-proclaimed denial.Anyways, Cora, she has build a very good life for herself. A successful career, Jamie her husband and a great house. But Ruby has never lived a life like that, and she's not sure if she wants to. Jamie happily welcomed her into their home but Cora seems a little tense, so Ruby doesn't want to be a burden to her sister. She doesn't really trust people so easily, so she has put up a big wall around her as an emotional defense. She tries to escape this new life, but instead she got into a good school, finding a job and finding friends, and maybe a little something more with her next door neighbour, Nate who seems to have secrets of his own. There's a special thing to Ruby that is of a big significance in the book, she always wears the necklace with her yellow farmhouse key to remind her of her difficult but more familiar old life.

There are a lot of interesting characters in this book, like Cora's husband Jamie and Nate. As the story unfolds, I see Ruby discovering herself a lot more and opening up to people. Something she has always been reluctant to do. She begins to learn more about what a family is all about, she begins to lower her emotional defense wall and reconnecting with Cora. She begins to settle into the changes in this new life. I really liked this book, even though the plot started a bit slow and stale during the beginning, but it got more interesting towards the end. I loved how Ruby grew into a more open person, and this is something I can relate to. A touching and meaningful story of moving on, but still holding on and opening your heart to others.


Grade: B

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