Lock and Key

Lock and Key

Book - 2009
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When she is abandoned by her alcoholic mother, high school senior Ruby winds up living with Cora, the sister she has not seen for ten years, and learns about Cora's new life, what makes a family, how to allow people to help her when she needs it, and that she too has something to offer others.
Publisher: New York, N.Y. : Speak, an imprint of Penguin Group (USA) Inc., 2009
ISBN: 9780142414729
0142414727
Branch Call Number: FICTION Des
Characteristics: 422 pages ; 22 cm

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l
lyla786
Aug 03, 2017

Beautiful book. I really loved Ruby's character. Though the thing about Marshall and Aaron and Nate, it seemed quite odd to me. How she'd willingly make out with anyone and not consider them anything to her. (Until the end of course, Nate) And there's just so much wisdom. The quoting from time to time, about life. How your thinking changes so suddenly depending on your situation and circumstances, and all the overall harships you come across throughout life. How you may have found the lock but still have a long way to go to find the key. Though I didn't find this book too intriguing or exciting, it was very different from other books I've read. And all of Sarah Dessen's books are easy reads, but she has such wonderful ideas and she makes almost anything come to life. ☆☆☆☆☆ - Lyla, age 12

t
TEENREVIEWBOARD
Dec 30, 2016

So here you have Ruby, and from the outside she's just a regular girl. But no, she's got quite a bit on her mind as she goes to live with her distant sister. As usual, the characters fit in the frame nicely, with each having their own quirks and characteristics. However, this book just didn't stand out to me as much. I really like this author's newer books, for they seem more intriguing. But for her first few, these are okay enough.  I would probably recommend this book to anyone around 14, or 15 even. 3.5/5
- @Siri of the Teen Review Board of the Hamilton Public Library

r
Rozywang
Aug 31, 2016

One of my favorites from Sarah Dessen. Her books are all similar in style but unique in a way. I usually forget what her books are about but I'll definitely remember this one. The story is very sad and a lot a people can relate to the plot. This book is very capturing.

j
Jen24
Aug 11, 2016

I find Sarah Dessen's books very repeatable and they use the same story. Frankly, this is true. However I did enjoy this book more than I thought I would.

m
Melevere
Jul 30, 2016

As usual I tend to find the beginning of this author's books quite long due to all the details; however I always know that the outcome will be worth it Boy was I right! I cannot begin to describe how much I love this novel : from the way the author describes the chemistry between characters to the way all the characters have an impact on each others' lives... It was truly one of my favourite Sarah Dessen books so far

t
tinybookworm
May 09, 2016

Another fantastic Sarah Dessen book. I really enjoyed reading it.
What I love about Sarah's writing is that she has a talent for writing these relatable interesting stories, but also when she writes, she includes honest, real insight about life and relationships, that coincide with the story she is telling, but can be related to the reader in their life.
I enjoyed the characters and the plot very much. I thought the story in the middle dragged on a little too long, but overall such a great novel.

e
ezbooks1
Jan 31, 2016

Its been a while since I've read this because I was 12 when I first read it. Now that i'm older I can understand the whole book. Its one of Sarah's best books. I absolutely love it <3

s
StephanieChow
Aug 15, 2015

This book had relatable problems in real life with family, friends and first love. I really enjoyed reading it.

s
sadia1903
Jul 27, 2015

A great book about a girl who ends up finding more about herself than she ever thought possible

p
PrincessMD
Jun 28, 2015

Lock and Key is one of the many great books Sarah Dessen has written. I am still working through reading all her books and this one by far is my favorite.

When 17 year old Ruby gets abandoned by her alcoholic mother and is reported by her landlords to social services she is forced to live with her sister. She has not seen her sister for ten years and as thought that her sister want nothing to do with her. Little did she know that her mother has been deceiving her.

Ruby's beliefs changes when she gets thrown into this life of money and family. She gradually makes friends and settles down with her sister. Ruby learns the true meaning of family; the people who love and accept you no matter who you are, where you can from and how you got here.

This book is great for people who love reading a book about a tragic start and a happy ending.

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Age

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y
yafictionlover15
Aug 13, 2014

yafictionlover15 thinks this title is suitable for 13 years and over

bethlogsdon Feb 26, 2014

bethlogsdon thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 14 and 24

olive_lion_9 Jul 10, 2013

olive_lion_9 thinks this title is suitable for All Ages

a
albeart
Jun 10, 2013

albeart thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over

Ólive May 25, 2012

Ólive thinks this title is suitable for 13 years and over

m
missmusic135
Jan 03, 2012

missmusic135 thinks this title is suitable for 13 years and over

diamantaluvs2read Nov 22, 2011

diamantaluvs2read thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 12 and 40

h
hpmuggle
Nov 07, 2011

hpmuggle thinks this title is suitable for 13 years and over

BookFaerie27 Oct 10, 2011

BookFaerie27 thinks this title is suitable for 13 years and over

y
yingyxo
Sep 17, 2011

yingyxo thinks this title is suitable for 13 years and over

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Quotes

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t
tinybookworm
May 09, 2016

My favourite quote in the whole book: "But isn't that always the way. It's never something huge that changes everything, but instead the tiniest of details, irrevocably tweaking the balance of the universe while you're busy focusing on the big picture" - Ruby (page 30)

olive_lion_9 Jul 11, 2013

"Later, up in my room, I kept thinking about this, the idea of distance and accomplishment. The further you go, the more you have to be proud of. At the same time, in order to come a long way, you have to be behind to begin with. In the end, though, maybe it's not how you reach a place that matters. Just that you get there at all." - Ruby

a
albeart
Jun 10, 2013

"In the lead up to the ceremony (graduation) I'd received endless paperwork and e-mails about getting tickets for family, and all the rules and regulations about how many we were allowed to reserve. In the end, I'd taken four, for Cora and Jamie, Reggie and Harriet. Not all family, but if there was one thing I'd learned over these last few months, it was that this was a flexible definition." -
Ruby

JewelMcLatchy Mar 26, 2013

I have my family of origin, which is you and Mom. And then Jamie's family, my family of marriage. And hopefully, I'll have another family, as well. Our family, that we make. Me and Jamie... Family isn't something that's supposed to be static or set. People marry in, divorce out. They're born, they die. It's always evolving, turning into something else.

Ólive May 25, 2012

"looking down at the pond, all i could think was that it is an incredibly thing, how a whole world can rise from what seems like nothing at all."- Rudy"change your way"

diamantaluvs2read Nov 22, 2011

"looking down at the pond, all i could think was that it is an incredibly thing, how a whole world can rise from what seems like nothing at all."- Rudy

Summary

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a
ashleyd13
Jul 09, 2015

When Ruby's mom goes missing, she ends up living with her sister and new brother-in-law. She's started a new school, met some friends, and, oh yeah, maybe found love.

a
albeart
Jun 10, 2013

When Ruby is abandoned by her mother, her sister and brother-in-law take her in. She soon discovers the true meaning of family and relationships while starting a new life.

Ólive May 25, 2012

all i want to do is have fun.Ruby, 17, is taken in by her older sister and brother-in-law when her mother abandons her. Ruby and her sister haven't spoken since Cora left for college a decade earlier. She moves from a semi-heated, semi-lighted farmhouse to a McMansion in a gated community. The theme of abandonment permeates the narrative-Ruby's mother's disappearance, Cora's perceived abandonment, and all of the small abandonments around every corner throughout Ruby's life. The plot hinges luxuriously on character arc. Ruby's drama of pathological self-reliance to eventual trust plays out through thoughtful, though occasionally heavy-handed, inner monologue and metaphor. As always, Dessen's characters live and breathe. Ruby's sweet hipster brother-in-law and Nate, the freakishly affable hottie next door, are especially vivid, and Cora's change from bitter control freak to sympathetic co-protagonist is subtle and seamless. Though Ruby and Nate don't have quite the cinematic chemistry of many of Dessen's couples, their cautious friendship into romance seems that much more realistic. The author's feel for setting is as uncanny as ever, and Ruby's descriptions of the homogenous nouveau riche Anytown are sharp, clever, and honest. The dialogue, especially between Ruby and Cora, is crisp, layered, and natural. The slow unfolding adds to an anticipatory mood. What's more, secrets and situations revealed in the second half of the novel are resolved more believably by already deeply developed characters. Recommend this one to patient, sophisticated readers.—Johanna Lewis, New York Public Library

p
princess555
Mar 10, 2011

Ruby, 17, is taken in by her older sister and brother-in-law when her mother abandons her. Ruby and her sister haven't spoken since Cora left for college a decade earlier. She moves from a semi-heated, semi-lighted farmhouse to a McMansion in a gated community. The theme of abandonment permeates the narrative-Ruby's mother's disappearance, Cora's perceived abandonment, and all of the small abandonments around every corner throughout Ruby's life. The plot hinges luxuriously on character arc. Ruby's drama of pathological self-reliance to eventual trust plays out through thoughtful, though occasionally heavy-handed, inner monologue and metaphor. As always, Dessen's characters live and breathe. Ruby's sweet hipster brother-in-law and Nate, the freakishly affable hottie next door, are especially vivid, and Cora's change from bitter control freak to sympathetic co-protagonist is subtle and seamless. Though Ruby and Nate don't have quite the cinematic chemistry of many of Dessen's couples, their cautious friendship into romance seems that much more realistic. The author's feel for setting is as uncanny as ever, and Ruby's descriptions of the homogenous nouveau riche Anytown are sharp, clever, and honest. The dialogue, especially between Ruby and Cora, is crisp, layered, and natural. The slow unfolding adds to an anticipatory mood. What's more, secrets and situations revealed in the second half of the novel are resolved more believably by already deeply developed characters. Recommend this one to patient, sophisticated readers.—Johanna Lewis, New York Public Library

Notices

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w
white_wolf_432
Aug 29, 2016

Other: Alcohol/drugs are mentioned more than once.

w
white_wolf_432
Aug 29, 2016

Coarse Language: There are quite a few foul words mixed in this book.

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