Seventeen-year-old Ruby has always been just fine on her own, thanks. She and her mom don't need help from anybody. Then Ruby's mom disappears, and Ruby is sent to live with her much older sister and brother-in-law. In the course of her senior year of high school, Ruby learns that asking for help doesn't mean admitting weakness. Instead, it's the beginning of strength.
Ruby, of course, is the center of this novel. With her shields firmly in place and her clear vulnerability underneath, she's immediately recognizable. Dessen also populates the novel with rich secondary characters. From Cora, the sister who once abandoned her, to Nate, the boy next door who seems to have the perfect life, nobody's what they seem on the surface, maybe not even Ruby.
This isn't a book with an overly complex plot or lots of explosions. The pace is leisurely and reflective, and the story centers around the quiet change in a young woman adapting to a new life and becoming a new self.
Find it at a library!
- Maureen K.