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Publisher's Summary

Since her parents' bitter divorce, Mclean and her dad, a restaurant consultant, have been on the move - four towns in two years. Estranged from her mother and her mother's new family, Mclean has followed her dad in leaving the unhappy past behind. And each new place gives her a chance to try out a new persona: from cheerleader to drama diva. But now, for the first time, Mclean discovers a desire to stay in one place and just be herself - whoever that is. Perhaps her neighbor Dave, an academic superstar trying to be just a regular guy, can help her find out. Combining Sarah Dessen's trademark graceful writing, great characters, and compelling storytelling, What Happened to Goodbye is irresistible reading.

©2011 Sarah Dessen (P)2011 Penguin Audio

Critic Reviews

"Dessen’s talent is creating just that comfortable space for young adults struggling with identity, relationships, and all that messy family stuff. Her quirky characters reach out to one another to forge genuine friendships and gentle first loves." (The Horn Book)

"Dessen’s fans will be happy to devour this latest offering." (SLJ)

"Readers can count on Dessen; she's a pro at creating characters caught at a nexus of change, who have broken relationships and who need to make decisions." (Kirkus Reviews)

What listeners say about What Happened to Goodbye

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    148
  • 4 Stars
    70
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    32
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    6
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Performance
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    49
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    18
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Story
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    130
  • 4 Stars
    47
  • 3 Stars
    27
  • 2 Stars
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    2

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Be Prepared for a Great Book!

I really enjoyed listening to 'What Happened to Goodbye' by Sarah Dessen. It's the type of of story I'm always on the hunt for. It really expresses a lot of what every teenage girl goes through! A young girl who is trying to find her place in the world. I recommended this book to all my friends and I hope they read it because they will be seriously missing out!

And Meredith Hagner is a pretty good narrator, she just needs to put more personality into her characters. Give them more life! And if she decides to narrate another book, I will most definitely consider buying the audio; if the story line is good, of course!
-Mel-

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

One of her best!

I'm a big Sarah Dessen fan, but this might be my favorite yet. The narrator is perfect, really brings the characters to life AND has good comic timing! Highly recommended if you're looking for a good YA novel with great characters.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

love the book ( wanted whisper)

Wonderful book but hard to listen to audio for sleep. Wish would of been great. I do recommend book

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Reader not right for me but...

Ms Dessen's tales improve for me every time I read/listen to one. I find her books captivating enough that I tend to revisit them several times. The only objection I had to this audio book was Ms Hagner's voice sounded too young for McLean. It was actually distracting at times but I pushed through those instances by concentrating on the "visual" at that point (which takes one out of the immersion into the book for that time). All things considered, it is a minor complaint & certainly not worth avoiding the book!

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

No

Definitely a young adult book and maybe to someone of that age would like the narration and story but not me.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Ideal beach read!

I can't rave enough about the narration of Meredith Hagner. She made the book so much more pleasurable for me. I liked the characters a lot and the minor conflicts that happen. It's a light read and perfect at the beach. I recommend if you want a fun, quick read.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Iz
  • 08-06-18

TV Show

This story line is so much like a tv show. There isn’t a whole lot that happens and I wished that there was a little more excitement somewhere in the story. I kept waiting for an “oh my!” moment and it never came.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Terrible Narrator

I love this story by Sarah Dessen, but the narrator almost ruins it completely. You can tell she doesn’t understand the main character by the way she uses inflection incorrectly and it takes you out of the story. She makes McLean sound like a valley girl...not even close.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Identity Issues

Would you listen to What Happened to Goodbye again? Why?

Yes, it is a story of trying to find an identity when everything around you crumbles and your left trying to stay afloat but your pride is wearing you down.

Would you be willing to try another book from Sarah Dessen? Why or why not?

Yes, I think Sarah Dessen is a brilliant writer and has captured the essence of what it's like to be an awkward teenage girl struggling through the teen years.

Which scene was your favorite?

When everyone was in the attic trying to put together the giant model of the town and Debbie was making everyone read the giant packet of rules before they could start

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

When Mclean ran off the the beach because that was the last place she felt like herself and her parents came and finally realized what they were doing to her and what she was doing to herself.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

great book

great book I have read several of Sarah Dessen books and this was was a keeper. It did not disappoint and was very good.
It is about a girl whose family went through a public divorce. - She moves around with her dad and at each place she changes her name and her personality. But this time she is herself.
Read it -- it is worth a credit