Author: Sarah Dessen
Publisher: Viking Juvenile
Genre: Contemporary, Realistic Fiction
Blurb: (from goodreads) Peyton, Sydney's charismatic older brother, has always been the star of the family, receiving the lion's share of their parents' attention and—lately—concern. When Peyton's increasingly reckless behavior culminates in an accident, a drunk driving conviction, and a jail sentence, Sydney is cast adrift, searching for her place in the family and the world. When everyone else is so worried about Peyton, is she the only one concerned about the victim of the accident?
Enter the Chathams, a warm, chaotic family who run a pizza parlor, play bluegrass on weekends, and pitch in to care for their mother, who has multiple sclerosis. Here Sydney experiences unquestioning acceptance. And here she meets Mac, gentle, watchful, and protective, who makes Sydney feel seen, really seen, for the first time.
The uber-popular Sarah Dessen explores her signature themes of family, self-discovery, and change in her twelfth novel, sure to delight her legions of fans.
Me: I don't know about you, but I love Sarah Dessen. I have a weak spot for her books. I've heard a lot said about them because they are "repetitive", but I think it takes talent and effort to keep coming up with these books and making big hits out of all of them.
The Ups: I think that Saint Anything was definitely one of her more insightful, deep novels. It dealt with a lot of topics, and dealt with them well. Sydney just as one character experienced guilt for something she didn't do, anger at her mother's blindness towards her brother's flaws, and dealing with her own security of always being invisible. But all the characters had struggles and problems that were prominent in the story. It made the book much more meaty and gave a lot of chew on.
As always, I love Sarah Dessen's writing. I will agree that her books have a similar tone and feel to them, but I like that that sets her off from other authors. I feel like there should be a "Sarah Dessen" genre...
(btw, totally random, I've just started getting really into glee. Comment if you love it :))
I liked the story line to this book, and all the different character relations going on. I really liked the character of Layla, and how incredibly unique she was. She wasn't afraid to stand up for herself and the people she cared about, but she also acknowledged her flaws.
It was great to speed through this book. I was entranced into Sydney's world, which is what usually happens with me and Sarah Dessen books. I was up all night finishing and it was totally worth it!
The Downs: I feel like Sydney wasn't my favorite protagonist of Sarah Dessen, but I definitely connected to her. I think that she could have been a little more exciting to read about, or portrayed in a better way, but I liked her well enough.
The only thing was, this book didn't have a spark for me. It was good, it was thought-provoking, but it wasn't the best.
Overall: A good one, but not the best of this author.
Rating: 4 kisses!