Who is the real Mclean?Wow. What can I say here? Dessen's Keeping the Moon was one of my favorite books in middle school. I've loved her work for a long time. To say I was looking forward to this book would be an understatement.
Since her parents' bitter divorce, McLean and her dad, a restaurant consultant, have been on the move-four towns in two years. Estranged from her mother and her mother's new family, McLean has followed her dad in leaving the unhappy past behind. And each new place gives her a chance to try out a new persona: from cheerleader to drama diva. But now, for the first time, McLean discovers a desire to stay in one place and just be herself, whoever that is. Perhaps Dave, the guy next door, can help her find out.
To say I was disappointed would also be one.
I didn't really get it. There didn't seem to be a point to the book. It was all tell, no show. (if you're a writer, and you most likely are, you get what I'm saying here). I was confused mostly. There were so many characters that we spent time focusing on but never really seemed to matter all that much. They were flat and forgettable, and most of them seemed to have the same personality. How many boy geniuses can you fit into one book?
Don't get me started on that.
WHO: Mclean Sweet is the main character. Or you could call her Beth, Lizbet, Liz, Lizzy, Elizabeth, Eliza, or however many names this girl had. Talk about confusing.
Dave: the super hot boy-next-door. He's boy genius, over-protected son and (predictably) madly in love with our leading lady, Mclean.
There were other supporting characters, but I really didn't get them. They weren't solid and their existence was questionable.
WHAT: Well, Mclean goes through this rough time after her parent's divorce and she's struggling. Her parents act like it's no big deal and that it doesn't effect her at all. Her mother acts like a teenager and throws hissy fits quite often. I don't think there was a single moment in which she acted like the adult she was. Anyways, Mclean moves around a lot and changes her name and personality with every move. Then she meets Dave and accidentally tells him her real name. Now she's stuck being Mclean again. At least, until her next move. But then she falls for Dave in that predictable but much loved style that is Sarah Dessen's.
WHEN: By the outfits in the book and the dialogue, I would definitely place this book setting easily in the time frame of 1999-2001. I would assume that I'm wrong and that it's actually 2011 or so. But still. Nobody wears fur coats and colorful crop tops anymore. And people haven't talked like that since the late 90's. Seriously.
WHERE: I couldn't even really tell you. I can't remember. It's in the same town 90% of her other books take place in though, so that should tell you something. I actually like that, that you hear so many stories of so many people that are all linked together unknowingly. Seriously. That's brilliant.
WHY: I guess the point of the book is so Mclean can find out who she really is. Also fall in love. Because that's pretty much the point of every Dessen book.
Now, I complained a lot about this book, but let me say a couple good things about it. Because I didn't actually completely hate it. I did enjoy the romance part. It's cheesy, it's familiar, and it's the reason Dessen's books are as popular as they are.
I did like the whole basketball drama. I wish it had been more eventful drama-wise. Maybe more people noticed it, more people asked about it, made her more uncomfortable about it.
On goodreads.com, I gave this book two stars.
by Ally Condie