The Boys of Dessen: Owen

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Owen is definitely the most physically intimidating of the Dessen boys. He is described as “tall (6’4”) and muscular, with broad shoulders and thick biceps. And he always wore boots with thick rubber soles that made him seem even bigger, his steps heavier.” He is insanely passionate about music and is never seen without his iPod and earphones. He’s had problems in the past with expressing his anger without punching guys in the face and, as a result, he’s gone to Anger Management therapy. There he learned to never hold anything in and always be honest. To me, his honesty is more intimidating than his appearance, although I wouldn’t want him to be anything other than honest. Ever. He wears a ring on each middle finger; one’s inscribed with “Go f*ck yourself.” and the other with “Or not.” which I totally want for myself, haha! Underneath all this toughness, Owen is incredibly caring, thoughtful, and sweet. Gotta love him!

Favorite Owen scene (or one of…):

“Incredible, right?”

Before I could answer, there was a bang of cymbals, followed by fizzing noise. Call it reflex, or self-preservation, or just common sense, but I couldn’t help myself: I pressed my palms over my ears.

Owen’s eyes widened, and I realized what I’d done. […]

“You did not,” Owen said finally, his voice low, “just cover your ears. Did you?”

“It was an accident,” I said. “I just–”

“That’s serious.” He reached forward, shaking his head and turned down the CD. “I mean, it’s one thing to listen and respectfully disagree. But to shut it out entirely, and not even give it a chance–”

“I gave it a chance!” I said.

“You call that a chance?” he asked. “That was five seconds.”

“It was long enough to form an opinion,” I said.

“Which was?”

“I covered my ears, “ I told him. “What do you think?”

He started to say something, then stopped, shaking his head. […] “Melisma,” Owen said after a moment, “is innovative and textured.”

“If by textured you mean unlistenable,” I said quietly, “then I agree.”

“I-Lang!” he said, pointing at me. I shrugged. “I can’t believe you’re saying that! This is the perfect marriage of instruments and technology! It’s unlike anything anyone’s ever done before! It sounds incredible!”

LOL, that’s probably one of the best example of Owen being passionate about music. Love how every sentence ends with an exclamation point.

And here’s a quote from this book that’s always stayed with me:

“There comes a time when the world gets quiet and the only thing left is your own heart. So you’d better learn the sound of it. Otherwise you’ll never understand what it’s saying.”

Here is the synopsis for Just Listen:

“Last year, Annabel was “the girl who has everything”—at least that’s the part she played in the television commercial for Kopf’s Department Store. This year, she’s the girl who has nothing: no best friend because mean-but-exciting Sophie dropped her, no peace at home since her older sister became anorexic, and no one to sit with at lunch. Until she meets Owen Armstrong. Tall, dark, and music-obsessed, Owen is a reformed bad boy with a commitment to truth-telling. With Owen’s help, maybe Annabel can face what happened the night she and Sophie stopped being friends.”

And now for the Just Listen Giveaway!

* You must be at least 13 years old to enter.
* The form below must be filled out to be officially entered.
* Contest is US Only. (I’m sorry!)
* Ends May 22nd, 2011 at 12:00pm CST.
* Winner will be chosen using
* Winner has 48 hours to respond.

Now Closed.


Jess @ Gone with the Words

14 Responses to “The Boys of Dessen: Owen”

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    I totally LOVED Owen. I think he's my fav Dessen boy. Sigh.
    So passionate about his music… and I liked his sister. lol.

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    I love these posts! They're so entertaining, and I love the male characters of Sarah Dessen (the most amusing of all); one of my favorite YA authors!

    I wonder what books she'll be having in the future…I'd read them all.

    And I love your blog! The header, the colors, they're perfect! A great job of yours! (:

  3. Avatar


    Awesome! I love me some Owen!! __Sorry not to say more, Im on a strange kb

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    I love the scenes you're sharing everyday! It's my favorite part of your posts!

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    Katelyn Torrey

    Owen and Dexter are constantly fighting for second place with me. I love Owen…almost as much as Wes. His passion for music is almost contagious. Oh man, good thing I am re-reading Just Listen right now, I could use some Owen time :)
    My recent post For Fans of Sarah Dessen!

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    Jennifer Stone

    OMG, I'm right in the middle of reading Just Listen and I LOVE Owen:)

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    Kate Lynn Ellison

    Owen,I think is by far my favorite.His honesty just seemed so comforting,like you could ask him anything and you knew it would be 100% the truth.Just Listen is my fave Sarah Dessen book.I loved it!

  8. Avatar

    Jasmine Golde

    Owen Armstrong is totally my favorite male book character of all time! (and I’ve read a lot of books in my 15 years of life:)

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