Book Review: Dear John by Nicholas Sparks


“I finally understood what true love meant…love meant that you care for another person’s happiness more than your own, no matter how painful the choices you face might be.”
― Nicholas Sparks, Dear John

I watched the movie, Dear John a couple of years ago. Over the years, I have watched number of other Nicholas Sparks’ movies such as Message in a Bottle, Safe Haven and of course, The Notebook. I have watched The Notebook so many times but sadly, I have never read the book. This was the same with Dear John.Actually, the only Nicholas Sparks that I have read are Safe Haven and A walk to remember. When I finally came across a copy of the book in one of those inama bookshops on the streets on Nairobi, I decided to get it.

Dear John is such a beautiful love story just like most stories by Sparks. I have never encountered any other author who writes romance novels like Nicholas Sparks does. Anyway, I digress. Dear John is a story about a young woman, Savanna who falls in love with a young soldier, John. The two meet while John is on leave from the army and Savanna is on vacation. They share a few magical weeks and fall in love.

“There are memories for both of us, of course, but I’ve learned that memories can have a physical, almost living presence, and in this, Savannah and I are different as well.If hers are stars in the nighttime sky, mine are the haunted empty spaces in beetween…”
― Nicholas Sparks, Dear John

Soon, John has to resume duty in Germany and so the couple has to part ways. The two manage to keep the romance alive by writing each other letters as they count down the days before they can meet again. After months apart, they meet and immediately rekindle their romance before John has to go back again to the army.
However, things change when John decides to extend his serve in the military especially after the September 11 attacks. The increased time apart seems to strain the relationships and their love is truly put to test during this period. The narrator paints a vivid picture of the hurdles of the long distance relationship at the peril of strains that come with absence.

images dj“Part of me aches at the thought of her being so close yet so untouchable, but her story and mine are different now. It wasn’t easy for me to accept this simple truth, because there was a time when our stories were the same, but that was six years and two lifetimes ago.”
― Nicholas Sparks, Dear John

Dear John by Nicholas Sparks is that kind of book that makes you feel good, all warm and fuzzy inside. It makes you dream as you learn about John and Savanna’s love story. This is the kind of book that you curl up on the sofa with on a cold, rainy afternoon as you drink your coffee. It’s the kind of book that opens your eyes to what love is really about and not just  romantic love but also familial love. Its a beautiful story.


ps:I wrote this review on January 29th 2016 although its scheduled to be posted on March 31st. My reading challenge for this year was to read 50 books. Its almost February and this was my 10thbook for the year