Friday, January 15, 2010

Dear John | Nicholas Sparks | bleh!

I mentioned the other day that I picked up Dear John by Nicholas Sparks from the library. It is an easy read, as are most of his books. I read this one particularly fast, but it’s not a long book either. My thought was that I really want to see the movie that is coming out soon, but wanted to read the book first. Well, after reading the book, I don’t even want to watch the movie.

I hated it. I know, hate is a strong word, but I hated it. Or rather, I hated the end of the book. And if you are planning on reading it and don’t want to hate me for spoiling the ending then skip right over this post.

So boy saves girls purse from being swept away in the ocean…they fall madly in love over two short weeks that summer and he returns to Germany were he is stationed in the Army. Over the next two years they write letters, talk on the phone, see each other on two different occasions when he (John) has leave from the military and every full moon they sit outside and think of the first full moon they shared together. He reenlists after September 11, 2001 and although she supports him, she’s sad that he won’t be with her as soon as they had planned.

Now I can’t remember the timing of the whole thing, but I do know it wasn’t long before he was scheduled to return home that she sent him his “Dear John…I’ve fallen in love with someone else. It wasn’t planned, it just happened, I’m sorry.” At this point in the book I just wanted to keep reading and reading and not put it down just so I would be done with it. Seriously? After all that and the love (oh the love!) she fell in love with someone else.

In the end, John’s father died (so sad, I cried) and while on leave for the funeral he decided to drive to Savannah’s home town. He didn’t know why, but he did it anyway. He found her and it turned out that she had married Tim, who we met earlier in the story, someone she had known for her entire life. Really Mr. Sparks, are you going to go there? They get married, move into the family house/ranch that is nestled right next to Savannah’s parents house/ranch. Sometime in there Tim’s parents died in a car accident leaving him to take care of his younger, autistic brother. Tim has to leave school (almost a PhD). And then what can you imagine happens, Tim gets diagnosed with cancer and is in the hospital when John comes to visit Savannah. Tim tells John that if he dies (and he expects to) to never forget about Savannah because Tim knows that they still love each other…and not the way she loves him, but a bigger, better, more passionate love. How could two people so in love in the beginning of the book, be so far apart only a few hundred pages later?

Blah, blah, blah…it’s all about true love and John ends up leaving Savannah’s home town, never to return again. Oh, but not with first making an anonymous donation to the fund being collected to send Tim to be a part of some research study. He did this by selling the coin collection his father left him…worth some obscene amount of money of course. In the end Tim is in remission and he and Savannah (who is still madly in love with John) live happily ever after.

I mean, really? Seriously? Why couldn’t she have waited for him? Why did she have to let herself fall in love with someone else? That’s not cool.

I lay on my bed last night after I finished, completely sick to my stomach. The end of that book was so disappointing; I thought for sure Savannah & John would live happily ever after. It’s not like I was hoping Tim would die, but really…I totally was!

I mean, why would I read a book that would end horribly like that?! And it wasn’t even that…it was like everything bad that could happen at the end of the book did: Savannah falls in love with another man, John receives Dear John letter, John’s dad dies, Savannah marries Tim, Tim’s parents die, AND Tim gets cancer. Do you think we could save some of the drama for the next book Nicholas!

1 comment:

The Wade Family said...

I'm glad I read all that, now I won't waste time reading that book either. I've liked several of Sparks' books (the Notebook, the Wedding, A Walk to Remember) but those are it, This craziness where they don't get together is common in his novels. Thanks for the spoiler. I would have been TICKED if I had read the whole thing and it ended that way!!!