I have been waiting a while to post about this book, this summer has been crazy with reading and school work so I am just getting around to this one. And I loved it. But before I get started, I am going to clear up a few questions I have been getting- I get questions sometimes about the books I post- first off I don’t do this for money- this is just a hobby of mine that I may or may not try and do as an actual job in the future. So really it’s just books that I read for pleasure (sometimes a school book gets on here-hey I am taking “Baseball in America” and so I am sure I will have one of those books blogged about before summer’s end 🙂 Additionally, it was suggested by a friend of mine to only blog about books I liked- and that makes sense. Who wants to wake up to a bad review of their book, even if it is on some random girls blog?? So yea, I only blog on books I enjoy. My goal in the beginning was to post once a week, but then I started school in a town an hour away and with the commute plus daily life that became once a month… now it’s just whenever I find the time, which is why sometimes I blog several times in a week and why sometimes y’all don’t hear from me for a month. It is what it is. Ok, now let’s get back to the book!
Once and For All is the latest book from author Sarah Dessen who is a Chapel Hill native (and an awesome person! I got to meet her! More on that in a minute). I have read every book Dessen has written and she does not disappoint! Her characters are always complex, and far from typical. Additionally, Dessen likes her characters to have cameos in future books- I LOVE THAT. Many of her stories take place in the same town and certain places are mentioned in several of them- Bendo is a band promoting club and Perkins Day and Jackson High are schools mentioned in nearly every text. It’s as if you get to meet each person in the town, rather than just one character.
In the book Once and For All readers meet the character of Louna who works for her mother, part owner and founder, of Natalie Barrett Weddings. Louna has seen all types of brides, flowers, venues… you name it. Not sure how she feels about love until she finds it, Louna goes about her daily life finishing high school and working on weekends.
At a wedding taking place at a beach resort she meets Ethan who quickly makes her feel special and loved. But not long after their meeting tragedy strikes and Louna is alone. Continuing on one day at a time, Louna is back working for her mom and trying to pick up the pieces, in doing so she meets charming, albeit messy, Ambrose. Is he the one who can help Louna move on? Read to find out!
Lucky me had the chance to meet Sarah Dessen a few months ago! She came to a local bookstore to talk about Once and For All and additionally she signed books and chatted with everyone- and I’m on the west coast and even though she must have been super jet lagged from her book tour, she was so kind to everyone! She made sure to not only sign books, but personalized them and talked with each person- that was so cool, it made me like her even more.
I will also admit that I got a little star struck talking to her- this is the author who I started reading in middle school and though her books are considered “YA,” I’ve never stopped. She is super talented. My favorite books of hers are “This Lullaby” and “Saint Anything.” Anyway, as I am talking to her, I get up the nerve to tell her about “Sweet Tea and Paperbacks” and gave her a card for the blog. When she saw the name of my blog she knew I was a southerner and started talking sweet tea and bojangles with me! ah, it was so cool! Here is a photo of nervous me- you can always tell I’m nervous if I start using my hands like crazy when I am talking… case in point-
The icing on the cake was when a few weeks later, I’m on Facebook and see that on her page she posted a picture of all the cards and letters she received on tour. And my “Sweet Tea & Paperbacks” card was in the pile! It made my day!! Here is the pic- I did one in color and the next one only my card is colored (not because the other cards aren’t important, but just to show which one is mine)-
The fact that she kept all these cards from fans is awesome- I think it shows her kindness and the love she has for them all. So thanks Sarah for an awesome meet and greet, and for a lovely new book! Can’t wait to see what you write next!