OK, I started out doing this whole entry on how Sarah Dessen books have totally upped the bar in the YA genre and how her themes of friendship and family and loss and pain and everything really hit home to me. I almost wrote about how affected I was by DREAMLAND, even though I’d never been in a physically abusive relationship. The writing was so raw and honest I almost felt like I had, and Sarah still managed to poke holes of light in a dark story.
Every time I’d start a new topic, I kept gravitating to one point I love in nearly all of Sarah Dessen’s stories. I fought it, because I want to pretend to be as insightful and true in this post as Sarah is in her books. But my buried adolescent hormones rebelled.
Yep. I just kept thinking about the BOYS.
Maybe it’s because in fiction, I can go from being an aspiring cougar to my teenage self, making it completely appropriate to fall for Dessen’s teen guy. And fall I do, book after book.
Why? Well, Sarah is a master of incorporating back-story into the weaving of fully fleshed-out characters. She also writes boys you may know—not fantasies—just sweet realities. And…
This could go on forever. Let’s just start a list. Below are my top three Dessen Hotties. No four. Three, I’ll stick to three just to keep those hormones from going too wild. Roar.
3. Norman from KEEPING THE MOON
What a great name. It takes some serious writing skillz to make a Norman cute. But Sarah crafts a heartthrob character: laid back, understanding, there-when-you-need-him. Cute in a “Shoulder-length brown hair, a tie-dyed T-shirt, cutoff army shorts, and Birkenstocks” kind of way. Oh, and he paints pictures that show the real you. The best you, because he understands and loves you. Also, he cooks theme dinners. Major points to Normie.
2. Owen from JUST LISTEN
Owen, the dark and mysterious bad boy who makes good. As if that’s not enough hotness, Owen creates a playlist of songs that remind him of our main girl, Annabel. A playlist, y’all. Do you know how long it took for me to find a song hubby and I could agree on to dance at our wedding, and the dude busts out a PLAYLIST? I started leaving my I-Pod by hubby’s side of the bed every night after I read this book, hoping one day there would be a “Why I Love My Wife” list added. Ah well. He did add some High School Musical for the kids. (Swear it was for the kids)
1. Wes from THE TRUTH ABOUT FOREVER
OK, take Edward Cullen. Now take away the supernatural stuff and the amber/hazel/honey eyes. And the watching-you-sleep thing. And cool cars. And… OK, forget him. Really. Wes is the leading YA man of my heart. I’ve read THE TRUTH ABOUT FOREVER two and a half times. The half? Just the Wes scenes. He believes (as all men should!) that flaws are what make them appealing. He sculpts beauty out of junk. He’s kind. And this is just the gravy, but he’s hot. Very hot.
Verrrrrrrrrrry hot. In a, you know, deep way.
I keep staring at the cover for Along for the Ride, excited to see where Guy with the White Shirt and Jeans on Bike is going to fit on my list. Adolescent me and adult me can’t wait. Double Roar.
Lindsey Leavitt is a busy little blogger over at livejournal. She is also eagerly awaiting the release of her debut novel, Princess for Hire, in 2010. She has a further release, Sean Griswold’s Head coming out in 2011.
Tomorrow: Khy from Frenetic Reader