This Lullaby was my maiden Sarah Dessen voyage (gasp! chuzzle! choke!) and I truly enjoyed the story, despite several differences in opinion with her characters re: sex, alcohol and risque photographs. (Can it be healthy to imbibe that much beer?)
When it comes to relationships, Remy doesn't mess around. After all, she's learned all there is to know from her mother, who's currently working on husband number five. But there's something about Dexter that seems to defy all of Remy's rules. He certainly doesn't seem like Mr. Right. For some reason, however, Remy just can't seem to shake him. Could it be that Remy's starting to understand what those love songs are all about?
I am a lot like Remy--not the bitchy part--just seriously in need of loosening up. Dessen does a wonderful job showing the joie de vive that Dexter brings to Remy's clinical existence. Too often I walk through life without taking my eyes off some marker in the distance, all the while missing the millions of joyful moments that lap at my feet.
Dessen's characters are lively, funny and real ... but the sad truth that last adjective reveals is a youth culture of lonely, fatherless, bed-and-bar-hopping pessimists who yearn for fresh beginnings. They don't understand that the answer isn't found in new surroundings--the change must take place in their hearts.