Lock and Key
by Sarah Dessen - Fiction
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 10 years, and Cora’s husband Jamie, whose down-to-earth demeanor makes it hard for Ruby to believe he founded the most popular networking website around. A luxurious house, a fancy private school, a new wardrobe, the promise of college and a future --- it’s a dream come true. So why is Ruby wary and defensive? And why is Nate, the boy next door with some secrets of his own, unable to accept the help that Ruby is just learning to give?
Someone Like You
by Sarah Dessen - Fiction
Halley has always followed in the wake of her best friend, Scarlett. But when Scarlett learns that her boyfriend has been killed in a motorcycle accident, and that she's carrying his baby, she's devastated. For the first time ever, Scarlett really needs Halley. Though their friendship may be tested by the strain, like a true friendship, it will endure.
• Started waitressing at the world famous Flying Burrito Restaurant ---wrote during the day and waitressed at night
• Sold THAT SUMMER three years after graduating; published in 1996
• Quit waitressing to accept a teaching position in the English department at University of North Carolina
• Movie HOW TO DEAL produced in 2003 is based off Sarah's two books THAT SUMMER and SOMEONE LIKE YOU
• In addition to teaching and writing, also does the books for her husband’s contracting business
• Lives in the country with her husband, some lizards, and two dogs
• Born in 1970 in Illinois, but spent majority of life in Chapel Hill, NC
• Parents are both professors at the University of North Carolina; mother is a classicist and father teaches Shakespeare .
• Has one brother who is a musician, he lives in California with his son and wife
• Typed her first stories on a manual typewriter on a little desk in a corner (typewriter was a gift for Sarah around age 8 or 9)
• Attended college at University of North Carolina, studied creative writing, and received a degree in English (after being on the 5 ½ year plan)
“No relationship is perfect, ever. There are always some ways you have to bend, to compromise, to give something up in order to gain something greater...The love we have for each other is bigger than these small differences. And that's the key. It's like a big pie chart, and the love in a relationship has to be the biggest piece. Love can make up for a lot.”
― Sarah Dessen, This Lullaby
“There is never a time or place for true love. It happens accidentally, in a heartbeat, in a single flashing, throbbing moment.”
― Sarah Dessen, The Truth About Forever
The books I read when I was teenager, the good ones anyway, have stuck more in my mind than anything since. I still love books, but while I couldn’t tell you complete plots of novels I read even six months ago, I do remember even the smallest descriptive details from Lois Lowry’s A Summer to Die or Judy Blume’s Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret. I think it was because back then books were still somewhat new to me, and when I found an author who seemed to say just what I was feeling, it really struck me and resonated. I hope that my books do that for the people who read them: I think it’s the best thing to which any writer can aspire. I’ve also been lucky enough to teach writing and see my students find their own voice. Teaching was great for me, because I got to show people how writing can really change the way you see not only yourself but the world. I’ve found in my own life that if my writing isn’t going well, not much else will. It is the one constant, the key to everything else. Now that I’m writing full time, I have my good days and bad days. But I’d rather be doing this, even on the worst days, than anything else.
Sarah Dessen grew up in Chapel Hill, North Carolina and attended UNC-Chapel Hill, graduating with highest honors in Creative Writing. She is the author of several novels, including Someone Like You, Just Listen and Along for the Ride. A motion picture based on her first two books, entitled How to Deal, was released in 2003. Her eleventh novel,The Moon and More, will be published in June 2013. She lives in North Carolina.