From number one New York Times bestselling author Sarah Dessen comes a big-hearted novel about a girl who reconnects with a part of her family she hasn’t seen since she was a little girl – and falls in love, all over the course of a magical summer.
Emma Saylor doesn’t remember a lot about her mother, who died when she was ten. But she does remember the stories her mom told her about the big lake that went on forever.
Now it’s just Emma and her dad, and life is good, if a little predictable . . . until Emma is unexpectedly sent to spend the summer with her mother’s family – her grandmother and cousins she hasn’t seen since she was a little girl.
When Emma arrives at the Lake, and spends more time with her mother’s side of the family, she starts to feel like she is two different people . To her father, she is Emma. But to her new family, she is Saylor, the name her mother always called her.
Then there’s Roo, the boy who was her very best friend when she was little. Roo holds the key to her family’s history, and slowly, he helps her put the pieces together about her past. It’s hard not to get caught up in the magic of the Lake – and Saylor finds herself falling under Roo’s spell as well.
But when it’s finally time to go back home, which side of Emma Saylor will win?
About the author
Sarah Dessen is the number one New York Times bestselling author of over a dozen novels for teens, which have received numerous awards and rave reviews. Her books have been published in over thirty countries and have sold millions of copies worldwide. She currently lives in North Carolina with her family.
Dessen explores her signature themes of family and romance in this layered contemporary novel driven by anxiety-prone protagonist Emma Saylor's curiosity about her late mother's life. Emma's mother, who succumbed to an overdose in 2011, left Emma and her father clinging to each other, her father deeply reluctant to discuss Emma's mother and her family. Years later, unexpected circumstances land Emma, now 17, on the shores of the lake her mother grew up on for a several-week stay with maternal grandmother Mimi. There, she finds two communities (one working-class, one wealthy), spends time with cousins she didn't know she had, and meets the handsome boy whose father was once her mother's best friend all while hearing stories, seeing photos, and discovering long-held secrets about her mother's wild teenage years and a single, terrible loss. Dessen takes her time building Emma's life on the lake, developing each familial relationship from the ground up, and illuminating layers of newness and personal, familial, and class conflict as Emma searches for bits of her past. A rich, patient story about a teen girl who craves family and an understanding of her roots after suffering a tragic loss. Ages 13 up.