TITLE: The Notebook
AUTHOR: Nicholas Sparks
Overall: ★★★★★ (5)
Every so often a love story so captures our hearts that it becomes more than a story-it becomes an experience to remember forever. The Notebook is such a book. It is a celebration of how passion can be ageless and timeless, a tale that moves us to laughter and tears and makes us believe in true love all over again… At thirty-one, Noah Calhoun, back in coastal North Carolina after World War II, is haunted by images of the girl he lost more than a decade earlier. At twenty-nine, socialite Allie Nelson is about to marry a wealthy lawyer, but she cannot stop thinking about the boy who long ago stole her heart. Thus begins the story of a love so enduring and deep it can turn tragedy into triumph, and may even have the power to create a miracle…
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BOOK JACKET BLURB:
THE NOTEBOOK is an achingly tender story about the enduring power of love, a story of miracles that will stay with you forever.
Set amid the austere beauty of coaster North Carolina in 1946, THE NOTEBOOK begins with the story of Noah Calhoun, a rural Southerner returned home from World War II. Noah, thirty-one, is restoring a plantation home to its former glory, and he is haunted by images of the beautiful girl he met fourteen years earlier, a girl he loved like no other. Unable to find her, yet unwilling to forget the summer they spent together, Noah is content to live with only memories… until she unexpectedly returns to his town to see him once again.
Allie Nelson, twenty-nine, is not engaged to another man, but realizes that the original passion she felt for Noah has not dimmed with the passage of time. Still, the obstacles that once ended their previous relationship remain, and the gulf between their worlds is too vast to ignore. With her impending marriage only weeks away, Allie is forced to confront her hopes and dreams for the future, a future that only she can shape.
Like a puzzle within a puzzle, the story of Noah and Allie is just the beginning. As it unfolds, their tale miraculously becomes something different, with much higher stakes. The result is a deeply moving portrait of love itself, the tender moments and the fundamental changes that affect us all. Shining with a beauty that is rarely found in current literature, THE NOTEBOOK establishes Nicholas Sparks as a classic storyteller with a unique insight into the only emotion that really matters.
THE CRITICAL POINTS
WRITING: Nicholas Sparks has a way of transporting you, emotionally, into a world all his own. When I cracked the spine of this book, I found it hard to put it down. I was reluctant to leave Noah and Allie, wanting—needing—to know what would happen next in their epic adventure. If it weren’t for Sparks’ amazing writing style and his ability to engage the reader on a deeply emotional level, this could have been just about any other love story filling the Romance shelf of your local book store. Yet it isn’t. The Notebook stands out among the others as a true classic in my eyes.
STORY: WOW… Just WOW! I was delighted to find out that this story was based on the lives of Nicholas Sparks’ wife’s grandparents. To know that this kind of deep… unbendable… love exists doesn’t surprise me, as I am truly, madly, deeply in love with my own husband. However, to know that this kind of love, can withstand even the hardest of obstacles thrown at it, gives love a whole new meaning. I imagine this to be the kind of love my own fraternal grandparents must have shared. I remember as a child, watching them look into each other’s eyes in such a loving, longing way. Years into their marriage, and long past their youth, they still loved each other just as much as the day they first realized their love existed.
Nicholas Sparks’ story is a love story to which all love stories should be measured by. I won’t give anything away, because although I am tempted to tell you all about the story, from start to end, this is one book I don’t want to ruin for you. I want you to read it for yourself. I want you to experience it first hand, take the journey with Noah and his beloved, and find out what fourteen years apart can do to the “love” they shared during their fairytale summer romance.
APPEARANCE: The cover is simple, the view from Noah’s front porch. At first glance, the cover reminded me of On Golden Pond by Ernest Thompson. The cover didn’t draw me in, at first, but as I read I longed to sit on that porch and see the world through Noah’s eyes.
MY FAVORITE QUOTE: “…But most of all, I learned that life is about sitting on benches next to ancient creeks with my hand on her knee and sometimes, on good days, for falling in love.”