The Rest of the Story Book Review

Book: The Rest of the Story
Author: Sarah Dessen
Rating: 5 Out of 5 Stars

Listen, I love Sarah Dessen. Her last book, Once and For All, really wasn’t my thing, but I do really enjoy her books. I have been a fan over her for over ten years and her books are a must read. The Rest of the Story is probably my new favourite book by her and is the prefect summer read. Ugh, it just pulled me in and I couldn’t put it down.

Most of Sarah’s books take place in either Colby or Lakeview. This one didn’t; those places are referenced, but they are not the main part of the story. Here we get to travel to North Lake or Lake North-depending on which side of the lake you are on. I don’t remember if any of Sarah’s other books take place here or not, but I loved the change. I love the other two settings, but it’s nice to be able to go to different places. Plus, this is set during the summer and I love books that take place in the summer. There’s just something magical about it.

This story follows Emma Saylor. Emma comes from a well off family, who is starting over. Her mom passed away five years ago after a drug overdose. She and her dad have been living with Nana, her dad’s mom. Her dad just got remarried and they are starting off this new chapter in their life. Even though Emma loves her stepmom, she is still hanging on to her own mother, who struggled with addiction. Things happen and now Emma is going to be spending three weeks with her mother’s family, who she doesn’t really know.

What I love about this book is how it deals with a serious issue. Emma’s mother was an addict. Most of books that deal with this topic only focus on the addict and not the family. Emma is still dealing with this and really is missing half of her life. She has this whole other family who she doesn’t know and now has the chance to meet them. Not only that, but her father is struggling with this. I get it; he doesn’t want her to get hurt. It is this struggle and family aspect of this book that made me really enjoy it. I guess what I’m getting at is that Sarah is good at adding that human element to her books and making you actually care about the characters and what they are going through.

Now, this book isn’t all gloom and doom. It has a fun and light hearted side. We get great friendships, fun adventures, and a little bit of romance. All of this feels very real and very natural. Yes, there is a dark undertone to the book, but you will walk away feeling good. This is what I like about Sarah’s books. She makes everything seem real and it just pulls you in. You can relate to her characters and their problems, because they are real.

Sarah Dessen is one of those authors who I don’t think I will ever outgrow. After ten years, she still pulls me in and has a really special place in my heart. If you are looking for a book with real feelings, but still makes you happy at the end of the day, then pick this up. Trust me, you will not be able to put it down.