Today I thought I would do a mashup review of the three Sarah Dessen books that I have read. The books that I will be reviewing for you today are: Just Listen, The Moon and More and That Summer.
I’ll start with my favourite Sarah Dessen book that I have read so far; Just Listen. This book is about Annabel who appears to have a perfect life but in reality, her life is far from perfect. She meets Owen who is obsessed with music and believes in always telling the truth. Owen helps her to discuss her problems and learn that things don’t have to be perfect for you to be happy. I really enjoyed this book, I thought the characters were much more relatable than the other two books I have read. This book dealt with a lot of difficult topics such as eating disorders and rape and I thought that they were dealt with really well. I liked the relationship between Owen and Annabel. I liked that unlike other YA contemporaries this wasn’t an instalove relationship and they started off as friends and we got to see their relationship develop. I also really liked that although romance, was a theme in this book it wasn’t the main theme and it focused instead on family and friendship which are themes that I feel are very important and are often overlooked in YA contemporaries.
Emeline thinks that she will be spending another summer with her boyfriend Luke but when a filmmaker called Theo asks Emeline to guide him around the area things begin to change. This story was basically Emeline making a choice between Luke and Theo. I didn’t like any of the characters in this book, Theo was extremely arrogant. I didn’t feel connected to Emeline in any way and therefore, I didn’t really care about who she decided to pick. Usually, I really enjoy light summer contemporary books but I just did not get on with this one.
This story follows Haven who has two weddings to go to this summer; her father’s and her sister’s. Haven reminisces about her sister’s ex-boyfriend Sumner who she much prefers to her sister’s current boyfriend. Sumner suddenly reappears in her life and she is really happy. I felt that this story didn’t really have a plot to it and it moved slowly and not a lot happened. I wasn’t a huge fan of any of the characters. I thought the book was going to be really summery but it wasn’t really although it was set during summer. Throughout the book, I kept expecting something really dramatic to happen but nothing did.
Although I have had mixed experiences with Sarah Dessen’s books I would still really like to read more. Having given two books, only two stars makes it seem as if I would be put off reading her books but that is not the case. I think with contemporaries it is really difficult to get high ratings as a lot of them aren’t that original. I really want to read Saint Anything as I feel I will really enjoy that one.
Do you have any Sarah Dessen recommendations?