Author: Sarah Dessen
Published date: April 22nd 2008
Age group: Young Adult
Genre: Realistic fiction, Romance, Coming of Age
Cover rating: 4/5
Overall rating: 4/5
Description via Goodreads:
Ruby knows that the game is up. For the past few months, she's been on her own in the yellow house, managing somehow, knowing that her mother will probably never return.That's how she comes to live with Cora, the sister she
hasn't seen in ten years, and Cora's husband Jamie, whose down-to-earth demeanor makes it hard for Ruby to believe he founded the most popular networking Web site around. A luxurious house, fancy private school, a new wardrobe, the promise of college and a future—it's a dream come true. So why is Ruby such a reluctant Cinderella, wary and defensive? And why is Nate, the genial boy next door with some secrets of his own, unable to accept the help that Ruby is just learning to give?
I really liked this. It's not the best book of Dessen's that I've read (I think it's very hard to live up to the brilliance of Just Listen!) but it was still really interesting and enjoyable. Dessen dealt with a lot of different issues in this book and dealt with them quite well.
Ruby is not the most likeable of characters at the start but I think that's probably the point. She's been changed by what she's been through and becomes withdrawn because that's how she deals with it. I liked that she developed and changed throughout the book and wasn't afraid to admit when she was wrong. I really liked her by the time I reached the end of the book. Nate was a fascinating character but he was definitely pushed to the side a lot and while we got to know a lot about this situation at home, we never really got to know him as a person. His story added a lot depth to the book and made it much darker.
I loved Ruby's sister and brother-in-law. I enjoyed seeing Cora trasnform and come out of her defensive shell once she got to know Ruby again and it was interesting to see how quickly Jamie came to care about Ruby and what she was doing. They added a lot of fun to the book and were probably my favourite characters- which is not what I expected when we were first introduced to them.
Overall, it was a really sweet story and Dessen's writing style made it lovely to read. I would recommend this book and I will probably re-read it at some stage, too.