best friends, bluegrass music, book review, boyfriends, Chathams, courage, drinking, drugs, drunk driving, friends, Layla, life, Love, Mac, music, new school, Peyton, pizza, Saint Anything, Sarah Dessen, story, Sydney, teenagers, YA, YA Contemporary, YA fiction
Book review: Saint Anything, by Sarah Dessen.
Sydney has always been the quiet one in the family, while her older brother, Peyton, gets all the attention from their parents. His behavior becomes increasingly wild, and when a drunk driving spree results in an accident that leaves a boy in a wheel chair, Peyton ends up in jail. But still Sydney’s parents don’t really see her or her needs. Her father escapes into his career, and her mother is obsessed with trying to visit Peyton. Sydney is left alone to cope with feelings of guilt and shame, not to mention a real creep of a guy who is supposed to ‘babysit’ her for the weekend. So Sydney flees, in search of something to fill the void in her life. In a pizza place near her new school, she meets the Chathams, a beautiful, loving, chaotic family that open their arms wide and bring her in. The Chathams have their own problems, but unlike her family, they face them with honesty. Layla is warm and charming — the best friend Sydney has always wanted, and Mac is everything a girl could want in a boyfriend — kind, thoughtful, and patient. He sees the real her, and he listens. (Sigh. What a heart throb.) Through their love and acceptance, Sydney grows to have the courage to deal with her problems.
In her usual talented way, Sarah Dessen has written another story that looks into the teenage heart and sees what is really there. It is thought-provoking and beautifully written. I enjoyed this book very much.