Showing posts with label Drama. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Drama. Show all posts

A Walk to Remember by Nicholas Sparks

A Walk to Remember by Nicholas Sparks

4.15  ·  Rating details ·  561,499 Ratings  ·  11,186 Reviews
A Walk to Remember by Nicholas Sparks download or read online for free
A Walk to Remember
by Nicholas Sparks
Every April, when the wind blows from the sea and mingles with the scent of lilacs, Landon Carter remembers his last year at Beaufort High. It was 1958, and Landon had already dated a girl or two. He even swore that he had once been in love. Certainly the last person in town he thought he'd fall for was Jamie Sullivan, the daughter of the town's Baptist minister.

A quiet girl who always carried a Bible with her schoolbooks, Jamie seemed content living in a world apart from the other teens. She took care of her widowed father, rescued hurt animals, and helped out at the local orphanage. No boy had ever asked her out. Landon would never have dreamed of it.

Then a twist of fate made Jamie his partner for the homecoming dance, and Landon Carter's life would never be the same. Being with Jamie would show him the depths of the human heart and lead him to a decision so stunning it would send him irrevocably on the road to manhood...

Did You Know?-

That Jamie was named after Nicholas's editor, Jamie Raab?

That Landon is the name of his third son?

That Nicholas Sparks recorded his own reading for the audio version of the novel?

“Love is like the wind, you can't see it but you can feel it.”

“Without suffering, there'd be no compassion.”

“I held her close to me with my eyes closed, wonering if anything in my life had ever been this perfect and knowing at the same time that it hadn't. I was in love, and the feeling was even more wonderful than I ever imagined it could be.”  

“Do you love me?' I asked her. She smiled. 'Yes.' 'Do you want me to be happy?' as I asked her this I felt my heart beginning to race. 'Of course I do.' 'Will you do something for me then?' She looked away, sadness crossing her features. 'I don't know if I can anymore.' she said. 'but if you could, would you?' I cannot adequately describe the intensity of what I was feeling at that moment. Love, anger, sadness, hope, and fear, whirling together sharpened by the nervousness I was feeling. Jamie looked at me curiously and my breaths became shallower. Suddenly I knew that I'd never felt as strongly for another person as I did at that moment. As I returned her gaze, this simple realization made me wish for the millionth time that I could make all this go away. Had it been possible, I would have traded my life for hers. I wanted to tell her my thoughts, but the sound of her voice suddenly silenced the emotions inside me. 'yes' she finally said, her voice weak yet somehow still full of promise. 'I would.' Finally getting control of myself I kissed her again, then brought my hand to her face, gently running my fingers over her cheek. I marveled at the softness of her skin, the gentleness I saw in her eyes. even now she was perfect. My throat began to tighten again, but as I said, I knew what I had to do. Since I had to accept that it was not within my power to cure her, what I wanted to do was give her something that she'd wanted. It was what my heart had been telling me to do all along. Jamie, I understood then, had already given me the answer I'd been searching for, the answer my heart needed to find. She'd told me outside Mr. Jenkins office, the night we'd asked him about doing the play. I smiled softly, and she returned my affection with a slight squeeze of my hand, as if trusting me in what I was about to do. Encouraged, I leaned closer and took a deep breath. When I exhaled, these were the words that flowed with my breath. 'Will you marry me?”


This was my first book by Sparks, and let me tell you, it. was. perfect. It’s so hard writing reviews for books you absolutely love, and this review will not do this book justice, so just bear with me.

I was pretty unsure about this book at first, and when I was told by a friend to read a Sparks book, absolutely any of my choosing, I didn’t really want to. But, despite not wanting to read I book by him, because I was being stubborn and thought I would absolutely hate it, I went on my library’s website and looked up Nicholas Sparks. Searching through the titles, the only one that was available was A Walk To Remember, and I took it and started reading it. Let me just say that I am so happy this book was the only one available, because if a started with, let's say The Guardian, I don’t think I would’ve continued reading Nicholas Sparks’ books.

Now, back to the story. I knew Sparks is known for writing tear-jerkers, and I knew what was coming at the end. What I didn’t know was how hard it would hit me, and that I’d be crying my eyes out at midnight. Yes, the book is pretty slow moving, but once it gets to the story, you won’t want to put it down. At least I didn’t want to put it down.

Immediately after I was done reading the book (and after I was done crying), I jumped on my computer, went on to Amazon and immediately bought this book, so I can read it again. And I will. I will absolutely be reading A Walk To Remember again. It’s a beautiful book, with quite possibly one of my favorite characters of all time (Jamie), and I can only hope everyone I recommend this book to loves it as well.

So please, even if you’re skeptical to start reading Sparks like I was, go to your library and ask if they have A Walk To Remember. Oh yeah, and please like it! (And I'm sorry for the crappy and barely-anything-to-do-with-the-book review.)
I am surprised by how much I liked this one. This was my first Nicholas Sparks read and after years of it being recommended to me I finally gave in.

I expected a by the numbers, cliche, love story. And it was in a way, but the characters were great and so the journey was great. And sad.

You know where this is headed from the very beginning in a way, but it still surprises you at points.
And no, I did not cry... I think... Maybe... Manly tears only...
"Promise me, that you won't fall in love with me" says Jamie Sullivan to Landon Carter at the beginning of the novel. Nicholas Sparks might as well be telling me that because I picked this book based on my friend Patrick who has been insisting that this is the best Sparks. 
You see this is my 6th Sparks. I stopped after reading Safe Haven (2 stars) because I got tired of his Hallmark-kind of storytelling. So, I decided to give Sparks another try with a big doubt whether I would like this. This is the reason why it took me more than a month to finish this book. I started it and after few pages, I stopped. Promised that I would not like it. Too cheesy for my taste. Then started all over again then stopped again. Where was I? I forgot the story already. Then for the last 3 days, as I wanted to please my friend Patrick, I read without stopping and I really liked it.

It's an easy read and the characters, though caricaturish, are sweet and lovable. I mean, the world is full of treachery and duplicitous people but here are Sparks' characters that are their total opposites. This book is totally an escapist work but I love it. It changes the panorama of how we view the world say from dusky and smuggy to sunny, clear with pink-tinted gloss. It's nice to escape to reality and this book is a nice way to do it.

Reading Sparks is like eating at McDonald's. Of course I read more cerebral and serious books than this. Those are the healthy stuff or the steaks or those hard-to-pronounce French cuisine or those burned Meditterean veggies or those real raw treats in a Japanese resto. Despite having all those choices for good books, I still pick, once-in-a-while, a Sparks. We know what to expect and we can't deny that we like it. Just like going to McDonald's. We always see it our our way to work and we know that it is not healthy. But still pass by to have a quick fix for our hunger and we cannot deny that we like it.
I fall in love with this book more and more each time I read it :) This is my favorite book and I'm glad I made it a tradition to reread it every year :)

Read for the first time: 2002? 2003?
Read for the second time: 2009?
Read for the third time: December 9, 2013
Read for the fourth time: December 3, 2014
Read for the fifth time: November 19, 2015
Read for the sixth time: December 4, 2016
What can I say? I can't even begin to explain how wonderful this book was. 
Once again, Nicholas Sparks outdone himself. When I first started reading this, I didn't expect much, seeing as how it was a tragedy and I don't really care for tragedies, after the disaster with Romeo and Juliet LOL. However, there was something more to this book than other sad books I've read in my life. For one, this book touched my heart-REALLY touched my heart- and made me ask myself all these questions about love and miracles. This is like, the only book in my life that gave me that heartwarming I-want-to-be-a-better-person feeling. I love how at the beginnning Landon was just an ordinary high school student who took the smallest details of life for granted, but after meeting Jamie, he saw life and love in a new perspective. THIS is the kind of book that could be the new Twilight. I feel like people need more of these heartwarming, inspiring stories and I'm very grateful to Mr. Sparks for teaching me a lesson that I'm sure others need to learn.

First off, I would like to praise the book cover. Fits the theme and book title perfectly. It reminds me of autumm, memories,walking, and lives changing. To me, the book cover shows how 57-years-old Landon flashbacks to his senior year when he was a 17-year-old. Even just looking at the cover makes my insides turn all gooey and reminds me of all Jamie and Landon had to gone through. :'(

Next, I'd like to say I love the whole romance thing. How a twist of fate could change a boy's life and make him see what life has to offer him. When Landon asked Jamie to go to the school dance, little did he know it would only be the beginning of a long-time memory that would last with him forever. It's so neat how Jamie and Landon would later fall in love with each other, even though they never expected the unexpected to happen. The tiny moments they had with each other (rehersing the play, helping out at orphanages, talking on her front porch, etc.) were beautiful, and makes me fall in love with the book even more. The whole process of falling for each other ,even though they didn't expect to, was heartlifting and makes the book all the better. That is what I expect in YA novels. I love how time after time they realize they're in love, instead of those stupid I-love-you-so-much-even-after-knowing-you-for-a-week romance.

I also enjoy getting to know the two main leads. Jamie is probably the most inspiring, most unselfish main character that I've ever known. She makes me want to be a better person, and she makes Landon feel that way, too. Two weeks ago, I didn't give a rat's ass about poor people or orphans. Now, however, after reading this book, I start thinking of miracles and small differences to make the world a better place. And the most inspiring, most saddest thing about Jamie was how she knew she was dying for, like, a year but during that year she still wanted to help others in need. Besides inspiring and unselfish, Jamie is also one of the bravest characters I know. She still stay optimistic, even when nature took its course. If I were in her place, I don't think I could be as brave as her. =')

I also love Landon! Like I said earlier, I think it's amazing how he never notice life's smallest details until he met Jamie. Before, he didn't give much thinking into making a difference, but then after getting to know Jamie, he fell in love and wanted to make his girl proud of him by making small but genuine gestures. I believe that that is what made him a strong, amazing man at the end of the book. For example, at the end of the book, when Landon said he finally believed in miracles, I think he means that Jamie was his miracle, and that he was Jamie's miracle. I believe that is what shaped him up. He's one of the best growing characters that I'd read about. And the scene when he married to Jamie was like the most beautiful, lovely, heartbreaking, powerful thing I've ever read in my life!!!!!!!!!! :)))

Now that my point is carried across, it's time to wrap things up. This was a very good book, and was the first and only book that made me cry in a long time. I could read this a thousand times, and I would still choke up a bit. It was a beautiful, heartwarming, powerful tearjerker. I had just watch the movie for the first time just today, which caused me to write this review. In my opinion, the movie was better than the novel, because the movie went deeper than what the book did. Plus, it made me cry even more than the book. Now everytime I see the book's cover, or listen to Mandy Moore's songs "Cry" and "Only Hope", or even think about the lovers behind the most amazing love story ever, I would break down in tears. Yes, AWTR was THAT amazing. It's saying something when a book/movie makes me extremely depressed for three days.

A Painted House by John Grisham

A Painted House by John Grisham

4.21  ·  Rating details ·  94,731 Ratings  ·  5,358 Reviews
A Painted House by John Grisham download or read online for free
A Painted House by John Grisham
Until that September of 1952, Luke Chandler had never kept a secret or told a single lie. But in the long, hot summer of his seventh year, two groups of migrant workers — and two very dangerous men — came through the Arkansas Delta to work the Chandler cotton farm. And suddenly mysteries are flooding Luke’s world.

A brutal murder leaves the town seething in gossip and suspicion. A beautiful young woman ignites forbidden passions. A fatherless baby is born ... and someone has begun furtively painting the bare clapboards of the Chandler farmhouse, slowly, painstakingly, bathing the run-down structure in gleaming white. And as young Luke watches the world around him, he unravels secrets that could shatter lives — and change his family and his town forever....


I learned that John Grisham should write more books in this genre because this is his best work....forget all those clients, partners, pelicans. 
One night, with a bunch of old friends in an apartment above Times Square, we tuned in to tv before turning in and The Bill Moyers Report was being aired; his guest was John Grisham. From his first responses, it was obvious that he possessed "gravitas" beyond his public persona.
Grisham grew up in Arkansas, the son of a cotton farmer, and went on to Law School but swiftly left that field of endeavor. He was a born story teller and has used the law background to great advantage. The next week I read "The Partner" which was clever and classy and all those best-seller adjectives. However, as I started reading "The Painted House" it was a most touching, true and arresting book that deserves the most serious consideration. Not just a "coming of age" story, this book deals with so many universal themes that no one could read it without making contact. It is a beautiful book. Put it on your bedside table pile.
For being from John Grisham, this was such a great book! 
For a long time I've enjoyed his legal thrillers, but after a while I suspected each book would be exactly the same as the last with the only difference being the plot. Granted that's one of the reasons I liked his novels, because I could trust they would be consistently good. When this book first came out I couldn't wait to read it and I fell in love with his ability to tell a heartfelt, meaningful story having nothing to do with law. I liked this book so much that I even recorded the Hallmark channel original that was made of it!
Great read! therapeutic,compelling,enjoyable and a moving story...determination,twists and turns to hold your interest to the end..well written
I was wary when this book came out - doubting Grisham could pull off historical fiction. 
Well he absolutely nailed it. It’s obvious Grisham drew from his personal experiences growing up in rural Arkansas. This is a heart-wrenching story of an impoverished farming community. It’s got it all, destitute share-croppers, migrant farm workers, a sweet young boy who lives for baseball, a devastating flood and a mentally unhinged murderer thrown in for good measure.
I wonder if Grisham had written this under a pseudonym if it would have been taken more seriously. Who knows, even ranked as one of the great American novels - it was that good.
Plus it inspired me to getting around to giving my house a fresh coat of paint.
This is not the usual John Grisham fare, but instead is a beautiful story told with great warmth and compassion. I have always enjoyed Grisham's books as good airplane reads--but never expected that he would write a book that I would list as one of my all-time favorites.
"The hill people and the Mexicans arrived on the same day. It was a Wednesday, early in September 1952. The Cardinals were five games behind the Dodgers with three weeks to go, and the season looked hopeless. The cotton, however, was waist-high to my father, over my head, and he and my grandfather could be heard before supper whispering words that were seldom heard. It could be a `good crop.'"

This was a really pleasant surprise. When asked about John Grisham, most of us immediately think of his wide catalogue of legal thrillers and their film adaptations. A Painted House is nothing like his other work (I admit to having read only one title - The Firm - a fact that I intend to change in due time) because it in no way relates to his traditional formula of legal thrilers. There is not a single lawyer in A Painted House; the best we get is a single policeman, because this story is set in rural Arkansas in 1952.

The novel is narrated in first person by a certain Luke Chandler, who also happens to be seven year old. The Chandler family are cotton farmers, and the book chronicles their struggles from late summer to early fall, when they harvest their crop with the help of Mexicans And Hill People. Luke will spend many hours picking cotton and living a boy's life; he'll hear things he shouldn't hear and see things he shouldn't see. These experiences will change him, as he'll have to grow up and face the dangers of adult life. But there will be many pleasant moments, too; the carniva;, first crush and many sweets from the stores in town. The people on farms have to be tough, or they won't survive. We experience their simple joys like listening to a baseball broadcast, but we also experience their despair with difficult harvest, their variness of people from other regions, the town gossip and the ever present preachers.

This book is the testament to Grisham's ability to tell a meaningful, sweet story that has nothing to do with the law. As he himself grew up in Arkansas, the novel has a certain autobiographical feel to it, and many events might have occured to the 7 year old John as well (I think many of them dealt with snakes). Grisham's narrator's voice is precocious but not offensive; easy to read and very desriptive.
This is not a coutroom drama, but the book is just as suspenseful, if not even more; the events and the characters are well drawn and memorable, and we only wish we could spend more time with them. This is a very sweet coming of age story, dealing with universal themes, which is also a real delight to get immersed in. Forget the chambers, appeals and clients; check in at the Painted House.
I seldom give five stars; they must be earned by the author's offerings. 
This book supplied all the necessary plot ingredients to satisfy the curiosities of this avid, mature reader. (No desire to see the movie, it could not possibly do this story justice.) Its not for the squeamish or sheltered reading audience. A realistic slice of life, poor/destitute Arkansas folks during the early Fifties, well-described and believable.
Such a well-written, engaging book. As the back cover suggests, A Painted House reminded me of books like To Kill a Mockingbird and Huck Finn. 
A boy from Arkansas (who loves the Cardinals and baseball and dreams of moving to St. Louis, all pluses in my book) grows up living the hard life on a cotton farm in the 50s. The book paints a vivid picture of what that common life might be like, with coming of age stories, family drama, and interpersonal conflicts, all while throwing in the less common intrigues of murders and a natural disaster. The relationships between ethnic groups, the role of the church, the pace of a 50s farm life, the ties of family, the importance of the paint on your house and its contrast to disasters, and finally the ambiguity of realized dreams... all highlights from a worthy one day read of 480 pages.

I'd never read a Grisham book before, but when I realized he wrote books that didn't involve lawyers, I decided to check this one out. Not disappointed. One of my favorite reads of the year.
I don't normally read Grisham, he's a great writer just not my typical genre. This, however, was an awesome story. I loved the whole experience of entering the world of Luke Chandler in 1951. It was a tremendously entertaining story. Well written, with so much detail and humor, realistic voices and a simpler time that was somehow made to be full of drama and suspense. I felt this was one of the best stories I can recall written from this era and brought so fully into focus.

Luke Chandler, 7 years old, lives in Black Oak Arkansas with his Mom and Dad, Gran and Pappy on a cotton farm. The cotton is their world. They are farmers, first and foremost and the cotton is their master.
When the story begins, it is harvesting time. The summer crop has been good, the weather has been favorable and the Chandlers are occupied with the task of finding "hill people" and Mexicans to hire to help harvest the cotton.
They will pay them to help pick the cotton and in return they will share their lives for the next two months. The decisions made at the beginning of the harvest turn out to have irrevocable consequences for the Chandlers, the Sprools- the "hill people', and the people of Black Oak.
These decisions and their resulting effects are unspooled steadily and with increasing tension as the story progresses in a wonderfully mesmerizing tapestry, full of color and vibrancy.
In essence, I was enthralled by this story. It was a journey to another place and time, one I was unfamiliar with, but was brought to feel right at home in. Read it, it's a pleasure.
I read this some time ago. I love the story. The setting is in the 50s, a much simpler time and yet a much more difficult time. The story is told through the eyes of an eight-year-old. I'm not sure, but I understand the story is based on John Grisham's childhood.

This is not a fast pace book. It is so much more. John Grisham told a very heart moving tale of the hard times as a farmer through the eyes of a young boy. The boy had me laughing at times with some of his silly pranks. It was a time that you didn't dare get caught using a cuss word, although the young boy would from time to time sneak off and practice curse words that his older brother had taught him.

The story took you to a place and time where folks lived off the land and the hardships that each day brought. I love this story. Great read and there were times you laugh and times you sat on the edge of your seat. There are surprises that keep you turning the pages. This book is a wonderful read for any age.
This is, so far as I know, Grisham's second or third departure from his legal thrillers. I have read several of his previous works and I found this novel to be a refreshing change, for the writer.
Until that September of 1952, Luke Chandler had never kept a secret or told a single lie. But in the long, hot summer of his seventh year, two groups of migrant workers—and two very dangerous men—came through the Arkansas Delta to work the Chandler cotton farm. And suddenly mysteries are flooding Luke’s world. A brutal murder leaves the town seething in gossip and suspicion. A beautiful young woman ignites forbidden passions. A fatherless baby is born. And someone has begun furtively painting the bare clapboards of the Chandler farmhouse, slowly, painstakingly, bathing the run-down structure in gleaming white. And as young Luke watches the world around him, he unravels secrets that could shatter lives—and change his family and his town forever