John, a high school dropout, enlists in the Army not knowing what else to do with his life. While in the Army he meets Savannah, they fall in love and she awaits his return from the Army. After 9/11 John feels it's his duty to re-enlist. During their long separation Savannah falls in love and marries someone else.
Despite the short duration of their stays in town, John and Savannah feel drawn to each other and are quickly spending every free moment together. Savannah is young, at times naive, and attached to her family, while John is old beyond his years and accustomed to short, meaningless flings. Their differences aside, both are swept away by their feelings and find themselves declaring their love for each other as the few weeks of their stays wind down. Savannah promises to write and wait for John to return from his tour of duty and they count down days to his next leave and his discharge from the Army. Then September 11th happens...
John is torn between the duty to his country and his desire to go home to Savannah, and hopes that she understands his ultimate decision to re-enlist. Savannah is initially supportive and the couple begins another countdown to John's new discharge date, but the distance only exacerbates their differences and creates rifts they may not be able to cross.
"Dear John" was the first Nicholas Sparks novel I've read, and I immediately understood the appeal of his writing. He writes with an understanding of the passion and urgency two people feel when they fall in love and made me feel invested in the story at hand. I blocked out the outside world and turned page after page, eager to know what happened to John and Savannah and hoping for a happy ending despite the cliche such an ending would represent. "Dear John" is an easy and compelling read, and one that may surprise you and defy your expectations.
This book is narrated
As John grew into a teenager he seemed to distance himself from his father. He couldn't understand it, but for some reason his father never seemed to want to take the initiative to strengthen their relationship. All his dad seemed to care about were his daily routines and his coin collection. John becomes so frustrated with his father that it really is not a surprise when one day he decides to join the Army in an attempt to distance himself from his father as much as he possibly can.
John grows up in the Army and probably learns more about being a man that he learned from his father. He still goes home on his Leaves and finds that with his newfound wisdom he is able to continue a relationship with his father. It is when John is based in Germany that he comes home on a Leave and meets Savannah, who will leave an impression on his heart forever.
It is easy for John and Savannah to start a relationship because as they spend time together they feel comfortable as if they have known each other for a lifetime. Before they realize what is going on they find themselves confiding their secrets, dreams, and fears with each other. Savannah sees a piece of John that no-one has ever had access to, and she also helps him to understand his father in a whole new light. The development of the father-son relationship is one of my favorite parts of this book.
John and Savannah are caught up in the whirlwind of their romance and understand that they will have to part soon. John will have to return to Germany and Savannah will have to return to college. They vow to keep in touch with each other and they do manage to successfully carry on a young relationship for quite some time. During the difficult time of being apart they both look forward to when John's service is complete so they can spend the rest of their lives together.
I'm not going to share any more about this book as I don't want to give too much away. Parts of the story were predictable to me and I think that is why I have steered away from Sparks novels in the past. I probably will continue to not actually 'read' his books, but I will be adding him to my list of audiobook authors that I do enjoy. I also loved the voice of the narrator of this book-it was like running into a young and polite serviceman on the East coast. If you are a Sparks fan I think you will enjoy this one.
Right from the very beginning of the story, you can tell there is something special about the two main characters, and their relationship. I especially love the effect Savannah has on
I don't care for the accent the narrator chose to use for Savannah, though I find her character to be quite funny. After much thought, I wonder if the crazy accent had anything to do with that....
There is some real and beautiful emotion in this book, that any reader will appreciate. I thought it was a fantastic book!
Definitely a recommendation!
The two main
I have heard great things about this book and have to say that it was a good book but not one of my most faves this year. I felt that most of the book was predictable and that I knew what was going to happen before it happened. If you are looking for a nice easy some what relaxing read then Dear John is just the book you are looking for.