Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Dear John Review

Dear John

Author: Nicholas Sparks
Average Rating: 3.96/5.0
Personal Rating: 5.0/5.0
Amount of Pages: 276
Finished Reading: June

According to Goodreads:

An angry rebel, John dropped out of school and enlisted in the Army, not knowing what else to do with his life--until he meets the girl of his dreams, Savannah. Their mutual attraction quickly grows into the kind of love that leaves Savannah waiting for John to finish his tour of duty, and John wanting to settle down with the woman who has captured his heart. 

But 9/11 changes everything. John feels it is his duty to re-enlist. And sadly, the long separation finds Savannah falling in love with someone else. 

Dear John, the letter read... and with those two words, a heart was broken and two lives were changed forever. Returning home, John must come to grips with the fact that Savannah, now married, is still his true love—and face the hardest decision of his life.

My opinion:

Oh my goodness gracious THE FEELS! Nicholas Sparks has done it again ladies and gentlemen.

Like every Nicholas Sparks book that I have read, Dear John started out slow. The whole first chapter was a major information dump. The information that was given was a necessity for the rest of the story to unfold, but it just seemed tedious to read about it. Once Savannah came into the mix the novel took off. 

One thing I loved about this particular novel was watching the changes in the relationship between John and his father. When John is confronted with the possibility that his father may have a mental disorder, anger and denial quickly become prominent. He knows that he and his father never had the typical father son relationship, but he just thought his dad was quiet and socially awkward. Then John notices the symptoms in his dad more and more, but he doesn't let them destroy their relationship even more. John learns more about the disorder, and learns how to connect with his father. The relationship that blossoms between them literally brought tears to my eyes. John turns his remorse for being such a difficult teenager into pure love for his father. 

I found it extremely frustrating how John wouldn't be open with his feelings with Savannah. He would rave about how much he loved her, but once she asked why he was angry or sad he wouldn't tell her. He would take the easiest way out and say "I don't know." Communication is one of the biggest keys in a healthy relationship. There are two parts that go along with communication: speaking and listening. John would listen to everything Savannah had to say about her feelings, but when it was his turn it was "I don't know." You have to give something before you can take. 

The writing was very simplistic. Not to the point where you felt like you were drudging slowly through it. Sparks incorporated real life events that brought back memories like 9/11. I know I was only in preschool when it happened, but I don't think I will ever forget the panic and tension in the air. Nor the expressions that were worn by the adults in my life. Sparks did a wonderful job in portraying how difficult it is for an intimate relationship to stay strong between a military member and a non-military member. 

I have loved all the books that I have read by Nicholas Sparks. He knows how to write a romance that isn't filled with sex or is so cheesy that I feel sick to my stomach. He knows how to pull the right strings in our hearts that send us on an emotional roller-coaster with the characters. If you are looking for a novel that is filled with a romance that is reality for many people out there today, then I would highly encourage you to pick up Dear John


  1. Yay! So I watched the movie of this when it came out a few years back and really loved it. I've been planning to read Nicholas Sparks's books for a while now and now that I've heard great things about his books, I think I'll get all of them and read them this summer! Great review, Meredith!

    My blog: http://www.thatgirlybookworm.blogspot.ca

    1. They are definitely easy reads to get through. I would say they would be perfect for the summer, but he does touch on some tough topics that bring out the emotions. Thank you!

  2. I'm really glad you liked this one! I've been meaning to read the book and this review definitely gives me the push to do so. Loved the movie :)

    1. I'm glad to hear that! I'm planning to watch the movie later tonight or tomorrow. I wanted to read the book first (typical, am I right?) Thank you for stopping by!

  3. I really enjoyed this one too def one of my favorites by Sparks. I also loved the father/son relationship and how it was developped. Also did you watch the movie? The ending is different and so not as good as the book. It was made to be more... hollywood. While the book is way more realistic even if it's a but more sad. I'd have to watch it again to remember exactly but I remember not liking the movie's ending compared to the book. Great review, Meredith! :)

    1. I actually watched the movie last night, and I have to say I wasn't impressed. They changed a lot of aspects that I thought were just fine in the book. The book was much better in this case. It's a real shame that the movie didn't follow the book, because the book was so realistic. I don't know. Whatever makes money I guess. Thanks for stopping by, Giselle!