Just Listen

Just Listen

4.05 (243,060 ratings by Goodreads)
By (author) 

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From the award-winning and New York Times bestselling author of Once and for All

To find the truth you've got to be willing to hear it.

When she's modeling, Annabel is the picture of perfection.

But her real life is far from perfect.

Fortunately, she's got Owen. He's intense, music-obsessed, and dedicated to always telling the truth.

And most of all, he's determined to make Annabel happy. . .

"This is young adult fiction at its best." --School Library Journal

Sarah Dessen is the winner of the Margaret A. Edwards Award for her contributions to YA literature, as well as the Romantic Times Career Achievement Award.

Books by Sarah Dessen:
That Summer
Someone Like You
Keeping the Moon
This Lullaby
The Truth About Forever
Just Listen
Lock and Key
Along for the Ride
What Happened to Goodbye
The Moon and More
Saint Anything
Once and for All
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Product details

  • 12-17
  • Paperback | 400 pages
  • 140 x 211 x 27mm | 383g
  • Penguin USA
  • New York, NY, United States
  • English
  • Reprint
  • 0142410977
  • 9780142410974
  • 48,631

Review Text

This is young adult fiction at its best ...

ùSchool Library Journal

Dessen weaves a sometimes funny, mostly emotional, and very satisfying story.

show more

Review quote

This is young adult fiction at its best ...

ùSchool Library Journal

Dessen weaves a sometimes funny, mostly emotional, and very satisfying story.

show more

About Sarah Dessen

Sarah Dessen is the author of thirteen novels, which include the New York Times bestsellers The Moon and More, What Happened to Goodbye, Along for the Ride, Lock and Key, Just Listen, The Truth About Forever, and This Lullaby. Her first two books, That Summer and Someone Like You, were made into the movie How to Deal.

Dessen's books are frequently chosen for the Teens' Top Ten list and the list of Best Fiction for Young Adults. They have been translated into twenty-five languages. Sarah Dessen is the recipient of the 2017 Margaret A. Edwards Award from the Young Adult division of the American Library Association.

Sarah Dessen graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with highest honors in creative writing. She lives in Chapel Hill with her husband, Jay, and their daughter, Sasha Clementine.

Visit Sarah at sarahdessen.com.
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Rating details

243,060 ratings
4.05 out of 5 stars
5 40% (98,353)
4 33% (80,509)
3 20% (47,405)
2 5% (12,020)
1 2% (4,773)

Our customer reviews

Up until now, THE TRUTH ABOUT FOREVER has always been my favorite Sarah Dessen book. Now that I've read JUST LISTEN, however, I think there's a tie! The characters of this latest release are so honestly real, their dialogue perfectly placed, that you can't help but be pulled into the life and times of Annabel Greene. Of course everyone thinks that Annabel has the perfect life. She's a model who has been in television commercials, in print ads, and in fashion shows at the local mall. She's popular at school, even if it is mostly because she's best friends with Sophie, the high school girl who demands attention. Her father is an architect who designed their house of glass; her mother lives for Annabel's modeling; she has two older sisters, Kirsten and Whitney, who are both former models themselves. Under all of that perfection, of course, lies the real Annabel. The one who suffered from something so horrible at the end of the last school year that she's lost not only her best friend, but her self-respect. Her family is so consumed with Whitney's eating disorder, with Kirsten's college life far away in New York, with keeping everything under control that Annabel doesn't tell them what's happened--the things that are still happening every day she goes to school just dreading the day. She doesn't want to add more problems to the mix; in fact, she lies by omission, simply avoiding the truth rather than shattering her family's illusions. But then Annabel meets Owen Armstrong, a boy she once watched punch out another student, then calmly walk away. Owen keeps to himself, never seems to be without his iPod, and doesn't appear to need any friends. But after he reaches out a hand to her, literally, after she's sick outside of school one day, a budding relationship of friendship begins to build between the guy who never lies, no matter what--and the girl who lies to protect other's feelings, namely her own. I loved JUST LISTEN. Owen is a character that will immediately grab your interest, especially with lines like "...for me, not saying how I feel when I feel it is a bad move. So I don't do it. Look at it this way: I might be saying you're fat, but at least I'm not punching you in the face." As for Annabel, the things she's holding inside are tearing her apart, and, in the end, it's the strength of her sisters that gets her to ask for help. The characters of Kirsten and Whitney are complicated and complex, and I have to admit that there's a part near the end of the book in which the sisters come together that had me crying like a baby. As for Annabel, it's not all about telling the truth, but about listening, not just to others, but mostly to that voice inside of her: "...this is what happens when you try to run from the past. It doesn't just catch up: it overtakes, blotting out the future, the landscape, the very sky, until there is no path left except that which leads through it, the only one that can ever get you home." *Gold Star Award Winner!show more
by TeensReadToo
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