What Happened To Goodbye is Charming

BlogHer Review

What Happened to Goodbye by Sarah Dessen is a charming story of the inner turmoil that teenagers go through.

We learn that the main character -- Mclean -- is named after a legendary basketball coach at Defriese U -- the college where her parents first met. To say that her family was a huge fan would be an understatement.

< p>They owned a little neighborhood restaurant. Her father was the chef -- her mother kept the books. They didn't have much, but Mclean thought they were happy.

Until her mother cheated on her father. To add insult to injury -- mom's boyfriend was the current college basketball coach at Defries U.

Now her parents are divorced, the restaurant is gone, mom has tons of money, and Mclean is hurting more than she ever lets on.

She has chosen to live a nomadic life with her father -- moving from town to town as he restructures restaurants that are flailing. In each town she gives herself a new name and a new personality.

And when it's time to leave -- she doesn't say goodbye.

But when they get to Lakeview, things are different. She quite accidentally starts using her real name. She meets a boy that she really likes. She makes friends that really care about her.

It starts to feel like "home".

I surprised myself by really liking this book. It is geared towards young adults -- and while I am a teenager at heart -- I have left those years long behind.

The author worked magic on Mclean -- and created a girl with a strong moral compass, that gets a bit lost in the pain of her parent's divorce. She is generally level headed and totally likable. As a reader you are rooting for her to find happiness -- you want things to work out for her, you are her friend, too.

This book is a fresh look at coming to terms with inner feelings. McLean's life was not unfolding in the way she would have liked. And while she could not change the circumstances, she has the power to change the results.

"When life gives you lemons....make lemonade." A lesson well learned.

I will absolutely recommend this author and this book to my daughter when she hits her teenage years.

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