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22 June 2013

Nicholas Sparks: The Best of Me

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Not the Best for Me
I have enjoyed a number of Nicholas Sparks' books, especially Safe Haven, but this one really didn't turn me on. It was a bit of a predictable reunion of teenage sweethearts where the flame had not been extinguished over 20 years and a lot of pretty unnecessarily lengthy padding about what had happened over that time.

Dawson Cole was an abused kid from the wrong side of the track who became friends with Amanda Collier, a rich and pretty girl. Of course they fall in love but the relationship was broken by pressure from Amanda's dominating mother. Dawson fled his abusive home and moves in with an Tuck who runs a local auto repair business. Even then his dreadful criminal family still keep him under their thumb and force him to pay them most of his earnings.

Despite an unnecessary spell in jail Dawson picks himself up and becomes a successful rigger on an offshore oil rig. Amanda goes off to College, marries well and has several children but is devastated when one of her daughters dies at a very early age from an inoperable brain cancer. This puts huge strains on her marriage and she takes solace by befriending Dawson's old mentor Tuck. Dawson and Amanda meet again when Tuck dies and his solicitor tells them that needs to see them about his estate.

The meeting of the former sweethearts was well written but the amount of background about their lives and their families was a bit over the top. The plot, especially where it concerned Dawson's family and their continued hatred of him was hardly believable as were the supernatural aspects which popped up throughout the story.

All in all it was an OK book but certainly not one of Sparks' best.

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