Wednesday 9 June 2010

Responding to Lock and Key / Sarah Dessen

Some of you might know that in a previous blogging life I was the Sarah Dessen Diarist. It's quite a perculiar thing...reading the paragraph of an author's work and then writing a response and so on until the chapter's finished. I covered five of her titles in this way for well over a year and I really got to know her work well. You might understand why I am on a hiatus for SDD right now :)

As I am still in midst of a reading slump, I shall be relaying quotes from my chapter by chapter responses to Dessen's Lock and Key.

Here's some quotes from my responses for the book:
  • Our first introduction to our protagonist, Ruby, is her musing that her new room is probably one of those heinous, ‘dream bedroom’ monstrosities. It would be my nightmare too. In my head Ruby was worried her room might look something like this, which you know would be my own personal circle of hell. Let’s face it applique is a tool of the devil.
  • There is something compelling about a single key. In my mind it symbolises loneliness, emptiness and sadness. It also shows strength. It kind of describes Ruby.
  • I love the way Olivia helps train her sister. Through threats and verbal abuse. Very sisterly. I think I have heard Olivia’s words come out of my mouth and fly out towards my own sister.
  • Hearing a little of Harriet’s back story gave me a stronger impression of her and an admiration for what she has accomplished. She is living her chosen life – the way she wants, no compromises. The only thing Ruby has to do is work to high expectations.
“…her neurosis was so annoying – following along behind me, checking and redoing each thing I did, taking over every task so I sometimes spent entire shifts doing nothing at all…”

Welcome to my mother, Ruby. This is the other end of the mother spectrum. Sure I didn’t see my mom bringing weird men home but I sure did have to fend her off when my zits proved to be way too tempting to pop. I have also lived with the knowledge that my inability to correct garb myself in matching hues has forever scarred my mother. Harriet sounds like a joy in comparison.
  • So apparently all I needed to know to succeed in maths was – take my time, prime my brain and get into it. Why didn’t anyone tell me this fifteen years ago?
  • Ruby needs control. Being left to the whims of others is not her deal, hence the display of stubbornness that rivals the worst of Elizabeth Hasselbeck.
  • Roscoe the dog appears to have more “toys” than I. I am jealous.
So that's what I used to do before Persnickety Snark. Every day I would write a 2000+ word response to a chapter of Dessen's work. It was enormously fun, especially knowing that Sarah read them and seemed to enjoy them. I keep meaning to return to it and maybe someday I will.

But for now, I keep wishing fervently that Sarah Dessen magically appears in NYC during my stay for a book signing or something. Not going to happen but a gal can hope.


Lisa_Gibson said...

This is in my TBR pile. I'll move it to the top. I literally lol with the 'applique is a tool of the devil' comment. :)

Robby said...

Gosh I love Sarah Dessen.
And by the way, I got the books. :D

Unknown said...

I tried reading this, but I guess I wasn't in the mood like I thought I was. But I do plan on finishing this!

kate.o.d said...

you're the sarah dessen expert so i'm probably wrong here...but i never got the sense that laney and olivia were sisters. friends, no?

Jessica Love said...

I hope something happens and that Sarah Dessen ends up in NYC when you are there!

Mollie said...

Ahhh I love Sarah Dessen!