So I wanted to start reading books by Sarah Dessen but had no idea where to start. The consensus was that I read Lock and Key. People that I had asked always said, “Lock and Key without a doubt is the best of her books.” So another great friend of mine lent me her copy.
Ruby is a girl who is close to turning eighteen and is now living with her older sister Coral who left home for college never to return. Coral left her only sister to be cared for by their alcohol-addicted mother who has recently abandoned Ruby. Ruby’s plan is to stick it out with her disconnected sister Coral and her husband Jamie until she is of legal age to live on her own. That of course is until she meets Nate and finds that life although sometimes tough, throws you in the right direction.
Sarah Dessen is an author who writes the inner thought of her characters the right way. Ruby was a voice that I needed to hear to understand her and her sister's journey, past and present. Flash backs are a tricky thing to read for me, I either look forward to them or am annoyed because I just want to read the now. However, the book wouldn’t have had the same effect on me without the flashbacks. At first, I was annoyed at the introduction of Coral, Ruby’s older sis, she was a bit cold in the beginning, but she opens up and has her own story to tell that ends up helping Ruby in life. Jamie, Coral’s husband is just great. He is the rock in both Ruby and Coral's lives and is extremely humble in his success of his social networking site. Nate the love interest for Ruby is someone who slowly makes his way into the story. His life has a direction and Ruby takes notice. She realizes that things aren’t always as they seem and winds up helping Nate with his own issues in life.
Family is what I took from Lock and Key. It is no longer the cookie cutter version; it’s the effort that goes into it. Realizing that everyone has problems in their life and to accept the help that is given in the purest form and to carry that with you, offering it later in the same way to someone else. Ruby is able to grow as a young woman from her unfortunate experiences with her mom. But after reading Ruby’s story, I don’t feel she would have been the same person. Life throws her off course for a reason and I feel that in Lock and Key, Ruby finds her way back with the help of the new people that she meets, which may have never occurred without moving in with her sister Coral. These people by the way are all extremely unique and never boring…at all. They are each crazy in their own way and dealing with their own life battles. I was attached to most of them, looking forward to listening to each of their stories and never wondering when the book would get back to Ruby or Nate’s problems. Harriet is all that I will say, and that I believe we all have little bit of her traits.
Anyone could pick up this book, it’s for the teen who may have grown up in a rough home, or the person who may know of someone like Ruby or Nate that want to do something to help. If you like to read books that have something to say I would highly recommend Lock and Key. It’s a well-written story that Sarah Dessen put a lot of heart into that reads true to life.