I love Sarah Dessen. I’ve loved her books since I was in middle school (when I read my first Sarah Dessen book). I love the fact that she’s from my hometown and went to my rival high school and is so entrenched in Chapel Hill culture (and honestly, all of that just makes me love her books even more).
Her newest novel, The Rest of the Story, came out earlier in June and is honestly the perfect summer read. Coming back to a Sarah Dessen book always makes my heart happy.
The Rest of the Story 5/5 Stars
Summary from Gooodreads: Emma Saylor doesn’t remember a lot about her mother, who died when she was ten. But she does remember the stories her mom told her about the big lake that went on forever, with cold, clear water and mossy trees at the edges.
Now it’s just Emma and her dad, and life is good, if a little predictable…until Emma is unexpectedly sent to spend the summer with her mother’s family—her grandmother and cousins she hasn’t seen since she was a little girl.
When Emma arrives at North Lake, she realizes there are actually two very different communities there. Her mother grew up in working class North Lake, while her dad spent summers in the wealthier Lake North resort. The more time Emma spends there, the more it starts to feel like she is divided into two people as well. To her father, she is Emma. But to her new family, she is Saylor, the name her mother always called her.
Then there’s Roo, the boy who was her very best friend when she was little. Roo holds the key to her family’s history, and slowly, he helps her put the pieces together about her past. It’s hard not to get caught up in the magic of North Lake—and Saylor finds herself falling under Roo’s spell as well.
For Saylor, it’s like a whole new world is opening up to her. But when it’s time to go back home, which side of her will win out?
Overall, I loved everything about this book. I’ve never really thought of the lake as like a summer thing (I’ve always been way more of an ocean/beach kind of girl), but this book about lake life was so cute. And I loved all of the characters- specifically Roo and Saylor’s cousin Bailey. I also really liked Trinity more and more as the book progressed. Saylor’s dad annoyed me- it seemed really sad that he thought he was too good for Saylor’s mom’s side of the family and so many of his choices seemed to be focused around trying to keep her away from them after she had created her connections to them. I really liked the storyline and the plot in general. It was such a cute summer story!
Like I said earlier, I’m a Sarah Dessen junkie and I haven’t disliked any of her books, so I 100% recommend reading The Rest of the Story (and all of the rest of Sarah Dessen’s books)!