Hot Best Seller

The Notebook

Availability: Ready to download

Author: Nicholas Sparks

Published: January 5th 2000 by Grand Central Publishing (first published October 1st 1996)

Format: Kindle Edition , 227 pages

Isbn: null

Language: English


Compare

Set amid the austere beauty of the North Carolina coast begins the story of Noah Calhoun, a rural Southerner recently returned from the Second World War. Noah is restoring a plantation home to its former glory, and he is haunted by images of the beautiful girl he met fourteen years earlier, a girl he loved like no other. Unable to find her, yet unwilling to forget the summ Set amid the austere beauty of the North Carolina coast begins the story of Noah Calhoun, a rural Southerner recently returned from the Second World War. Noah is restoring a plantation home to its former glory, and he is haunted by images of the beautiful girl he met fourteen years earlier, a girl he loved like no other. Unable to find her, yet unwilling to forget the summer they spent together, Noah is content to live with only memories...until she unexpectedly returns to his town to see him once again. Like a puzzle within a puzzle, the story of Noah and Allie is just the beginning. As it unfolds, their tale miraculously becomes something different, with much higher stakes. The result is a deeply moving portrait of love itself, the tender moments and the fundamental changes that affect us all. It is a story of miracles and emotions that will stay with you forever.

30 review for The Notebook

  1. 5 out of 5

    Nicole

    I love the movie, but if you think that was sappy, do not pick up this book. I heard Nicholas Sparks had a knack for sap, but I almost drowned in it and felt no spark at all. The book was so frustratingly simple and obvious and laid out. The dialoque droned. I'll come back and add a real quote, but it was something like this: "Do you want to stay for dinner?" he asked, wondering what she would say. "Okay," she said, and than asked, "What should we eat?" "Crabs," he said. She never had crabs. They b I love the movie, but if you think that was sappy, do not pick up this book. I heard Nicholas Sparks had a knack for sap, but I almost drowned in it and felt no spark at all. The book was so frustratingly simple and obvious and laid out. The dialoque droned. I'll come back and add a real quote, but it was something like this: "Do you want to stay for dinner?" he asked, wondering what she would say. "Okay," she said, and than asked, "What should we eat?" "Crabs," he said. She never had crabs. They began to cook the crabs... etc. There is a "quiver in his loins" when he sees her in her transparent white dress as well. Oh and "the two become one" when they make love. And then she is forced to leave when her fiance pays a surprise visit to down and she struggles to drive through her tears, but fights through the blurry vision because she is a strong woman like her mother... lalalalala. Could the book be any more contrived and gimicky? Who rated this above a one? And please enlighten me. Gag, gag, awful writing, what a frustrating bore. He left nothing to the imagination. Unless you like getting dumber by the minute, don't pick this one up.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Stacey

    I read this book on a train from Italy to somewhere else in Europe after graduating from college. I was unfortunate enough to be forced to buy it because there were no other English Language novels to choose from. I know this is a beloved book, by a beloved author, but if I could give it any sort of negative rating, I would. The "Gag me with a spoon" category is almost too kind. My apologies to any one who likes Nicholas Sparks - if you're able to find the genius in his writing, more power to you I read this book on a train from Italy to somewhere else in Europe after graduating from college. I was unfortunate enough to be forced to buy it because there were no other English Language novels to choose from. I know this is a beloved book, by a beloved author, but if I could give it any sort of negative rating, I would. The "Gag me with a spoon" category is almost too kind. My apologies to any one who likes Nicholas Sparks - if you're able to find the genius in his writing, more power to you! When I heard the plot - an old man is reliving his personal history with the love of his life as she suffers from dementia - I had much hope for a touching story. Esh - I was sorely disappointed. My favorite memory is reading the scene between the two young (and I'm assuming attractive) lovers...they are in a boat on a lake, romantic setting, yes? It starts to rain. She's wearing a white dress. "We have to get you inside where it's warm...better remove those wet clothes, you'll catch a cold..." Commence eye-rolling now. After reading the book, I passed it on to my now husband, who was also on the train. Keep in mind, there were no other English options! He starts to comment, "Oh, they're on the lake in a boat...okay, it's raining...oh geeze, why do you girls read this crap?" And that's what I think about this book...why would anyone read this (unless there were no other choices)?!?

  3. 5 out of 5

    Cristina Monica

    I’m just gonna say it: I expected less. Not being inexperienced in the reading of Nicholas Sparks novels, I somewhat knew this book would contain tons and tons of corny and cheesy replies and gestures. But NOT in every. single. paragraph. I’m not one to discard the idea of soul mates, after all the young adult readings that I have done, but when something is too wonderful and perfect, it’s more annoying than cute. So there is too much of that. Also, the plot is so weirdly shaped. It starts with No I’m just gonna say it: I expected less. Not being inexperienced in the reading of Nicholas Sparks novels, I somewhat knew this book would contain tons and tons of corny and cheesy replies and gestures. But NOT in every. single. paragraph. I’m not one to discard the idea of soul mates, after all the young adult readings that I have done, but when something is too wonderful and perfect, it’s more annoying than cute. So there is too much of that. Also, the plot is so weirdly shaped. It starts with Noah as an elderly, in the first person, then it continues in the 3rd person with Noah in his thirties, and it finally ends with elderly Noah in the first person again. I know why the author did that and it’s pretty ingenious when you globally think about it… but reading it is a different story. The 3rd person part of the story is cut at the most decisive moment and that is utterly outraging. Moreover, when Noah sees Allie again, she is engaged to a super rich attorney. That super rich attorney, to whom I forgot the name of, is madly stressed out when he discovers that Allie has been with Noah the whole time she claimed to needing time to make some purchases in a specific city. So what does he do? He runs to her and tries to win her back! But does he ever turn against Noah? Bah! Noah is an angel, how can anyone despise him? And finally, the mother. Allie’s mother. She disapproved of them as a couple when they were in their teen years, but now more than a dozen years later she doesn’t even blink when she learns Allie has gone back to Noah and never tries to talk Allie into going back to her super rich attorney. So not realistic. Basically, this book is made of rainbows and sunshine. Not my favorite combination. I expected less of that. Sigh.

  4. 4 out of 5

    jessica

    well, i was promised tears and, unfortunately, my eyes are as dry as the sahara. i will say that i think the story itself has an unbelievable amount of potential - its the execution that leaves much to be desired. i just couldnt believe the connection between noah and allie and i think its because we dont see any of their history. sure, the reader gets the jist of it as noah is sitting on his porch and thinking about the past - but its all dry facts told to the reader, not first hand experience. well, i was promised tears and, unfortunately, my eyes are as dry as the sahara. i will say that i think the story itself has an unbelievable amount of potential - its the execution that leaves much to be desired. i just couldnt believe the connection between noah and allie and i think its because we dont see any of their history. sure, the reader gets the jist of it as noah is sitting on his porch and thinking about the past - but its all dry facts told to the reader, not first hand experience. this novel takes place over a day and a half in the present, 14 years after noah and allie meet/separate. this should have started when noah and allie first met. i want to experience their summer together. i want to see what happens when allie leaves. i want to worry for noah as he goes off to war. and i want to know what they have been doing these past 14 years. everything is just so underdeveloped. i havent seen the film, but i have seen the trailer, and that has more emotion than this entire book put together because it actually tells the story of noah and allie. which is what this book should have done. ↠ 3 stars

  5. 4 out of 5

    Becky

    This is the worst book I have EVER READ. And the fact that this guy is so popular continues to astound me. I would give it less than zero stars if I could. My sister tricked me into reading this book, and I wish I could gain that time back into my life so I could read a different book. This book teaches you that ANYONE could write a bestseller. Just be sappy and corny and have one big-ass deus ex machina and you're all set for stardom. As you can tell, I don't read shit that I think I won't like This is the worst book I have EVER READ. And the fact that this guy is so popular continues to astound me. I would give it less than zero stars if I could. My sister tricked me into reading this book, and I wish I could gain that time back into my life so I could read a different book. This book teaches you that ANYONE could write a bestseller. Just be sappy and corny and have one big-ass deus ex machina and you're all set for stardom. As you can tell, I don't read shit that I think I won't like. I have rated many books as a 4 or 5, and this book pisses me off to no end because it had the audacity to waste my time as a reader.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Kat Kennedy

    Have you ever come across something so undeniably cute that you feel like you may be crushed by the weight of squee that’s about to explode from you chest. Kind of like when you see this? That’s what reading The Notebook was like. The romantic tone of The Notebook was both its greatest asset and biggest downfall. Nobody wants to be crushed by squee anymore than they want to drown in their own tears and The Notebook wants to destroy you. Never doubt that. Whether it’s leaching your bodily liquids o Have you ever come across something so undeniably cute that you feel like you may be crushed by the weight of squee that’s about to explode from you chest. Kind of like when you see this? That’s what reading The Notebook was like. The romantic tone of The Notebook was both its greatest asset and biggest downfall. Nobody wants to be crushed by squee anymore than they want to drown in their own tears and The Notebook wants to destroy you. Never doubt that. Whether it’s leaching your bodily liquids out of you until you resemble The Ice Man or boring you to death. Really, those are the only two options you’ve got with this book. Who can stand to see something as cute as that kitten up there all day every day? You need something not so cute to break up the boredom. Similarly, in The Notebook, the long, romantic verses filled with poetry and stunning imagery will ultimately become tiresome the longer you read it. Probably it’s just me. In case you haven’t figured it out, I’m not exactly the most romantic person out there. In my relationship it’s my husband who is the romantic. He’s the one that makes me breakfast in bed every single morning and puts a rose from the garden on my tray. He’s the one that calls me to see how my day’s gone and sends me soppy, romantic messages. If you’re a sentimental, sweet kind of person (two adjectives nobody has ever applied to me) then I’m sure you’d like this book and it would do you justice. For those who like a little more “action” in the literary sack then this book may tend to waffle on and be overly mushy. Now THAT’S more like it!

  7. 5 out of 5

    Lady Jayne *~*The Beach Bandida*~*

    4 Stars - Also reviewed at: Lady Jayne's Reading Den Sweet and romantic, but I liked the movie much more. In fact, I LOVED the movie and watched it before reading this. In the movie, the characters of Noah and Allie had more intensity and passion. It is one of those rare moments, for me, when the movie was better than the book. There are some great quotes in this book though. These were my favourite: "I am a common man with common thoughts, and I've led a common life. There are no monuments ded 4 Stars - Also reviewed at: Lady Jayne's Reading Den Sweet and romantic, but I liked the movie much more. In fact, I LOVED the movie and watched it before reading this. In the movie, the characters of Noah and Allie had more intensity and passion. It is one of those rare moments, for me, when the movie was better than the book. There are some great quotes in this book though. These were my favourite: "I am a common man with common thoughts, and I've led a common life. There are no monuments dedicated to me and my name will soon be forgotten, but I've loved another with all my heart and soul, and to me, this has always been enough." "We sit silently and watch the world around us. This has taken a lifetime to learn. It seems only the old are able to sit next to one another and not say anything and still feel content. The young, brash and impatient, must always break the silence. It is a waste, for silence is pure. Silence is holy. It draws people together because only those who are comfortable with each other can sit without speaking." "The best love is the kind that awakens the soul and makes us reach for more, that plants a fire in our hearts and brings peace to our minds, and that's what you've given to me..." "We fell in love, despite our differences, and once we did, something rare and beautiful was created. For me, love like that has only happened once, and that's why every minute we spent together has been seared in my memory. I'll never forget a single moment of it." "So it's not gonna be easy. It's going to be really hard; we're gonna have to work at this everyday, but I want to do that because I want you. I want all of you, forever, everyday. You and me... everyday." "I love you. I am who I am because of you. You are every reason, every hope, and every dream I've ever had, and no matter what happens to us in the future, everyday we are together is the greatest day of my life. I will always be yours." COPYRIGHT DISCLAIMER: I do not hold the copyright to any of the images used in this review. They are posted to add visuals to the review and for fun. If any of these images are yours and you would like me to remove them, please let me know, and I will do so as soon as possible. If I can identify the copyright, I will do so.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Books Ring Mah Bell

    quite possibly the sweetest love story ever. I wept like a baby.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Anushka

    Seriously, what the fuck was this?

  10. 4 out of 5

    jen

    This is my favorite love story ever. It shows what true soul mates are. (I also loved the movie as much as the book.) If you don't cry when you read this then something is wrong with you. I think that you can love someone like ally did the lawyer, but only true love with your soul mate like with Noah. People who don't like this book have never truely been loved, because if you have it hits home. Here are a few of my favorite quotes from the book: "I am a common man with common thoughts, and I've l This is my favorite love story ever. It shows what true soul mates are. (I also loved the movie as much as the book.) If you don't cry when you read this then something is wrong with you. I think that you can love someone like ally did the lawyer, but only true love with your soul mate like with Noah. People who don't like this book have never truely been loved, because if you have it hits home. Here are a few of my favorite quotes from the book: "I am a common man with common thoughts, and I've led a common life. There are no monuments dedicated to me and my name will soon be forgotten, but I've loved another with all my heart and soul, and to me, this has always been enough." "We sit silently and watch the world around us. This has taken a lifetime to learn. It seems only the old are able to sit next to one another and not say anything and still feel content. The young, brash and impatient, must always break the silence. It is a waste, for silence is pure. Silence is holy. It draws people together because only those who are comfortable with each other can sit without speaking."

  11. 5 out of 5

    Miranda Reads

    The tears...oh the angsty teen tears. Check out my video 5 Books that *Actually* Made Me Cry for all the juicy details. Thanks for watching! The tears...oh the angsty teen tears. Check out my video 5 Books that *Actually* Made Me Cry for all the juicy details. Thanks for watching!

  12. 4 out of 5

    Tahera

    “I am nothing special; of this I am sure. I am a common man with common thoughts, and I’ve led a common life. There are no monuments dedicated to me and my name will soon be forgotten, but I’ve loved another with all my heart and soul, and to me, this has always been enough.” A beautiful, emotional, intense and passionate love story 💖 💖!

  13. 5 out of 5

    Laura

    Vanessa bought me this book after I watched Fracture and developed a serious crush on Ryan Gosling. Well, that led me to this movie and, unfortunately, this book. How does this man have a career as a writer?! Who is paying him to write stories with the most obvious choices in plot/dialogue/decisions. Wow. Lowest common denominator.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Carolyn

    I read this book because my sister loved it. It made me sad. Not because it was a sad story, but because it was so poorly written. This Sparks character had a fantastic idea for a story, a truly painful and passionate story of love and devotion. But the book? It was like my 14 year old nephew watched this brilliant movie, then tried to write about it on his myspace blog. It was butchered by an appalling lack adjectives and an appalling lack of emotion. Sad. The fact that so many people are willi I read this book because my sister loved it. It made me sad. Not because it was a sad story, but because it was so poorly written. This Sparks character had a fantastic idea for a story, a truly painful and passionate story of love and devotion. But the book? It was like my 14 year old nephew watched this brilliant movie, then tried to write about it on his myspace blog. It was butchered by an appalling lack adjectives and an appalling lack of emotion. Sad. The fact that so many people are willing to overlook Sparks' lack of creativity and inability to, well, write, is also sad. Sad, I say. Sorry Tracy.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Muphyn

    Besides the awful writing style (just to mention unimaginative, spiritless and full of clichés), I found the story just a little too contrived and far too predictable. I couldn't get over the premise where Noah and Allie meet when they are teenagers, spend one summer together and meet again after 14 years to realise they are still utterly in love?! What?! It irritated me to no end that Sparks felt the need to not leave anything unexplained, describing things in excruciating detail, boring me but Besides the awful writing style (just to mention unimaginative, spiritless and full of clichés), I found the story just a little too contrived and far too predictable. I couldn't get over the premise where Noah and Allie meet when they are teenagers, spend one summer together and meet again after 14 years to realise they are still utterly in love?! What?! It irritated me to no end that Sparks felt the need to not leave anything unexplained, describing things in excruciating detail, boring me but more so putting me off reading any of his other books. In the end it just felt like it was dragging on and on and on - I just wanted it to end. Also, since I listened to the audio version I must say that the choice for the reader of the audio book isn't the most brilliant one. His voice is kind of suited for the old Noah but his imitation of a young Allie is just really off-putting. Plus, he's got that kind of voice that makes me want to fall asleep straight away. Combine that with the terrible style and plot, this book can only be described as indigestible. No more Nicholas Sparks for me, thank you!

  16. 4 out of 5

    Tylah Marie

    ***** 4.5 STARS ***** I first read this book when I was about 15 so this was almost not memorable for me though I’ve watched the movie thousands of times. (Even in the middle of reading this book this time around just because I wanted to double up being all in my feels.) This book is just.... beautiful. The way Allie and Noah’s love for each other just spills out of the pages is just magical. I feel just so grateful to be able to read their story. Letter writing really knows how to tear at my hear ***** 4.5 STARS ***** I first read this book when I was about 15 so this was almost not memorable for me though I’ve watched the movie thousands of times. (Even in the middle of reading this book this time around just because I wanted to double up being all in my feels.) This book is just.... beautiful. The way Allie and Noah’s love for each other just spills out of the pages is just magical. I feel just so grateful to be able to read their story. Letter writing really knows how to tear at my heart strings. I’m a big letter writer and just think it’s such a wonderful way to articulate the way you feel so to read about it... ugh. My heart. The letter Allie writes Noah made me sob. My girlfriend looks over and here I am at 8pm crying on the couch into these pages that I never wanted to end. Wonderful book. I am so glad that I read this again and I know I will a lot more in the future!!

  17. 5 out of 5

    Crystal Starr Light

    Well, that's one author I can cross off my "to-read" list. Noah and Allie fell in love one summer when he was 17 and she 15. She leaves, and fourteen years pass before Allie, now engaged, returns to Noah. Are they still in love? Will she marry her over-working fiance, with whom she shares a passionless relationship and who keeps her from pursuing her passion of art? Or will she choose Noah, the boy she spent a grand total of one summer with and lost her virginity to (and hasn't had sex with anoth Well, that's one author I can cross off my "to-read" list. Noah and Allie fell in love one summer when he was 17 and she 15. She leaves, and fourteen years pass before Allie, now engaged, returns to Noah. Are they still in love? Will she marry her over-working fiance, with whom she shares a passionless relationship and who keeps her from pursuing her passion of art? Or will she choose Noah, the boy she spent a grand total of one summer with and lost her virginity to (and hasn't had sex with another man in the entire 14 years they've been apart)? I see people enjoying this for primarily two reason: 1. You adore sappy romances where you can predict the plot from the beginning and have to keep a box of tissues nearby for the monsoon of tears that will be spilled. BONUS: You love the "Greatest Love of All Ages" ending with the couple in "present day" as 80 year-olds gasping on their death beds, clinging to each other's hands. 2. You love to participate in Bad Book Buddy Reads with an amazing compatriot. You love to groan as the plot points are written in big crayon pages before they appear, roll your eyes at the overwrought descriptions of love, and wince at Trio of Terrible Writing, Cardboard Characters, and Zero Subtlety. Guess which one I was? This book was bad; bad as in "so good it's bad" category. Meaning, perfect for Bad Book Buddy Reads. And I was not disappointed - this book was a gold mine of snarkable material. The characters are so flat, they are almost invisible. Noah is the Rugged Poet (who writes no poetry), giving him the duo combination of being Deep/Intellectual but also a man who works with his hands (he WORKS for a living gorrammit!). Allie is a Passionate Free-Spirit, who loves to paint and is therefore Deep and Artsy. The rest of the characters (what few of them even exist) are even worse (if that is possible); Lon is the Foil, Anne, Allie's mom, is the Voice of Inspiration, Gus is the Person of Color (no seriously, there is no reason he appears in this book). I get that this book is a mere 213 pages long in my edition, but come on! Fill the world with some color, why don't ya? I was surprised at the progression of what passes for "story". I saw the movie, so I remember there was quite a bit of build-up between teenaged Allie and Noah along with the older people. The book totally skips over ANY sort of relationship building between the teenaged protagonists and instead starts the story with a HUGE backstory dump with Noah at 31 and Allie at 29! The problem is, we have spent NO TIME developing their romantic feelings for each other; instead, Allie is back to see Noah after 14 years! By the way, if Noah and Allie were REALLY so deeply in love, why did it take them FOURTEEN YEARS to reunite? Why were they THAT surprised when Anne withheld Noah's letters (come on, Allie's parents weren't shy in letting Noah know they didn't like him!)? Noah tries ONCE in the 14 years to see Allie; that's it! If I'm going to buy this is the Greatest Love Story of All Time (which I don't), I need to see them pursuing it. As for the "Greatest Love Story of All Time" - laughable. As I said, there is no chemistry between the two. Sparks relies on TELLING us (frequently!) how his characters burn for each other. That is NOT chemistry; that is a summary. Last thing: I could not believe how awful the writing was. It was so boring! So simple! So fraught with telling and not showing. And I even spotted some grammar errors (tenses changing in mid-sentence and some unclear pronoun usage). There isn't very many times I say this, but the movie was lightyears better than the book (and I wasn't even that big of a fan of the movie!). Rachel McAdams and Ryan Gosling did a great job at personifying the characters and, most importantly, conveying the Greatest Love of All Time. I guess you can give Sparks credit for being able to write a concept that would make a good movie, but when I read a book, I have certain criteria: namely characters, plot, writing. I also hate to say this, but some of the books I've really ranted against (*cough*Danse Macabre by LKH*cough*) look much better against the poor quality of this book. If you are curious about this book, watch the movie. If you are a big sucker for sappy romances or love to snark with buddies, pick this book up!

  18. 4 out of 5

    Annet

    Sure, pleasant story, but just too sweet and a too limited challenge for me I'm afraid. Although I also have my moments that I just want to enjoy a romantic story without too much thought. We can't always be reading high top unreadable literature... ;-) It's the ideal mix, tailormade to what the reader mind wants at a certain point in time. Two stars, therefore.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Abby

    So, I didn't love this book, even though every other girl on planet earth does. Here's the deal: it's an old guy at the end of his life, showing how undyingly committed and in love he is with his elderly wife, who is dying of Alzheimer's. Sweet, right? Except here is how he shows his love: every day, he reads her the story of their love. It involves hooking up as teenagers, then being apart without communication for years and years, yet yearning for one another while sleeping around with other p So, I didn't love this book, even though every other girl on planet earth does. Here's the deal: it's an old guy at the end of his life, showing how undyingly committed and in love he is with his elderly wife, who is dying of Alzheimer's. Sweet, right? Except here is how he shows his love: every day, he reads her the story of their love. It involves hooking up as teenagers, then being apart without communication for years and years, yet yearning for one another while sleeping around with other people, then getting back together to fornicate like crazy and cheat on her fiance and break up her soon to be wedding. If that is not eternal and undying love, I don't know what is. There is no way you can go wrong picking a life partner if you are horny and running away from responsibility and commitment, as this book clearly shows. That is the only way to find a man who will love you and change your diapers for you when you get old. Okay, so he wasn't changing her diapers, but you get the point. I try to go with the romance of the book, and it is romantic in the eldery love sort of way (hence the 3 stars, because I figure eventually they grew up), but I can't help but think the main characters are sleazy. The end. Throw tomatoes at me now.

  20. 5 out of 5

    NAT.orious reads ☾

    Either my Nicholas Sparks times are over or this book is just not to my liking in general. It's a touching story but it didn't quite catch me. Not at all, actually. Nicholas Sparks' books all blur together in my head to one big sappy and somewhat unlikely love story that is so eye-rolling I'd rather watch newly in love couples making out on the underground train.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Dana

    Does such true love really exist? Nicholas Sparks, all I can tell is that your wife Cathy has been lucky to marry you!I cried like a baby.Yes, true love will return to you, maybe not in a very perfect condition, maybe with a fiancee, maybe not with a good heart, but surely it'll return.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Fuzaila

    The Notebook is the sappiest, cheesiest, most….er, romantic book I might’ve ever read. Nicholas Sparks weaves romantic lines from the simplest of words and they turn out cringey and good at the same time. So, why the four stars? This book was given to me by my uncle when I was barely fourteen. I remember reading it then and wondering if he had actually read it, and then thinking that if he had, then he must consider me mature enough to read this book, and feeling quite proud of the fact. Back th The Notebook is the sappiest, cheesiest, most….er, romantic book I might’ve ever read. Nicholas Sparks weaves romantic lines from the simplest of words and they turn out cringey and good at the same time. So, why the four stars? This book was given to me by my uncle when I was barely fourteen. I remember reading it then and wondering if he had actually read it, and then thinking that if he had, then he must consider me mature enough to read this book, and feeling quite proud of the fact. Back then, I swooned over the romance, though neither the characters nor the romance itself is swoon worthy. I remember really loving the miracle aspect of the novel, of how Sparks thought that miracles really do happen, of hoping I’d encounter a miracle myself and be forced to believe the same. Rereading it now, expecting what is to come, I knew there wasn’t going to be any mind-blowing moments or anything remotely close. This is merely the way it is for me, and not a book I’d recommend to others. Looking at all the one-star reviews, I understand why this novel failed to please so many readers, but nevertheless, it remains one of the very few books I own, and so, it’s too important for me to not love it. I realize I sound as cheesy and corny as Sparks does in this book, so I’d get on with the review. Noah Taylor Calhoun has loved only once. The summer he turned seventeen, he met Allie Nelson at a festival in his home town of New Bern in North Carolina. Allie was there for nearly two months, but those two months lasted a lifetime for the two of them. They met each day and made memories and slowly fell irrevocably in love. Fast forward, Noah is thirty-one and alone, renovating an old house he had always loved - losing himself in work - trying to stay away from the memories of the hazel-eyed girl he’d once fallen in love with. Allie is twenty-nine, engaged, and lives a routine life she’d always thought she’d lead. But an encounter with each other was all they needed. The old memories rush in. Bonding over candle-light dinner and kayak rides, the two once again discover why they’d fallen for each other, and even more, that they’d never stopped. Noah and Allie’s relationship while at first might seem like insta-love, there are a thousand memories that make up their chemistry, but unfortunately the author doesn’t deem them necessary enough to share with his readers. The summer they initially met is mentioned many times, but only in conversation. We don’t get to see what or why they fell in love, nor do we get to see the development that is so obviously there. Sparks makes it work though; he makes us believe that Noah and Allie truly share a wonderful past, that there were some wonderful moments that keep them bonded. I only wish we could’ve experienced it with them. What I loved the most was the family dynamic in this book. Noah’s father has no role here, but he’s so often present in Noah’s thoughts. I love how he made his father sound like this wise old man, who’d loved his son and raised him to be the tough, nature-loving gentleman that he is. And then there is this one instance, where Noah talks about losing a child and how it feels, of growing up together with your family, bringing up kids – they all hit right on the spot. I also loved Allie’s mother, who despite everything, loved her daughter and wanted her to be happy no matter what. The vivid, clear description of New Bern and the natural aura, the kayaking, canoeing, rain, art and paintings; everything felt heartrendingly nice to me. Even though this book is supposed to be set around the time of Second World War, we don’t get to see the bad side – the depression, the deaths, the bloodshed and poverty. I can’t decide if that is a good thing or bad. The Romance? If you have the patience for long-drawn, meant-to-be-poetic-but-are-actually-sap kinda romantic letters and descriptions of sex, then maybe you’ll love this book. There’s no way in hell that actual people speak the way Noah does, there’s no way people actually write such cringe-worthy letters. It is unrealistic, yes, for the most part. But what do you expect from a romance? The chemistry between Noah and Allie felt real to me, but sometimes hasty. I’d say the character of Lon Hammond had no real significance in this book, and the male characters all act a little too gentlemanly (there are only two of them actually). But I loved reading the very realistic concerns of an old man groping over his upcoming death, reminiscing his long life and feeling ancient – they felt real and believable, as if the author himself had such thoughts bothering him. The Ending ? was far too stretched and the author dwelt on the same thing again and again, as if he didn’t know how to end it all and was waiting for inspiration to strike. There were some fillers, some boring parts – unnecessary additions that could’ve been avoided. Otherwise, there wasn’t a real ending at all.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Jane

    Where I got the book: I have absolutely no idea what this was doing on the Shelf of Shame. I'm really hoping it was a freebie from some event, because seriously, I wouldn't have bought it would I? Another Bad Book Buddy Read with Crystal Starr Light. Bottom line: Well, there's no accounting for taste, and if you like sappy Twoo Luv stories this is your man. My mileage varied, mostly because I was reading critically with ALL my teeth and claws out, so I'll forgive you if you enjoyed it because yeah Where I got the book: I have absolutely no idea what this was doing on the Shelf of Shame. I'm really hoping it was a freebie from some event, because seriously, I wouldn't have bought it would I? Another Bad Book Buddy Read with Crystal Starr Light. Bottom line: Well, there's no accounting for taste, and if you like sappy Twoo Luv stories this is your man. My mileage varied, mostly because I was reading critically with ALL my teeth and claws out, so I'll forgive you if you enjoyed it because yeah, I can see where the enjoyment could happen. My emotions changed as I read through this novel. They were, in order, Incredulity, Boredom and Depression. Incredulity Well, THAT got off to a good start when I realized that pretty much the entire novel was going to be a flashback. And increased exponentially when I encountered clichés such as the poetry-book-that-stopped-a-bullet and girl-undresses-in-front-of-mirror. This is the scene-setting exposition part of the story, which continues for an alarming 38 pages but really should have been much longer, because it's a sketch of a teenage love story (yawn) with parental opposition (YAWN) and How The War Matured Me. And of course Noah is a gentle poet who likes to take things slooooooowly and commune with Nature, sort of like Walt Whitman with less hair (Whitman is liberally quoted, which vexed me because quoting poetry in novels is a pet peeve of mine. Also song lyrics.) Boredom The yawns set in big time once we got into the Twoo Luv story of how Allie decides to cheat on her fiancé by looking up her old boyfriend, making sure her dress gets REALLY WET so that her nipples stand out like hard little diamonds or something, and then rubbing her hands all over Noah's chest. Oh yeah, and suggesting he crack open a bottle just in case her inhibitions don't drop low enough. This, naturally, leads to a massive bonkathon extending over several days. After which Allie, who should pretty much be unable to walk by now, actually has the gall to do the it's-not-you-it's-me speech and LEAVE. Only to be bounced back by an even MORE clichéd scene involving Mom and, I swear I'm not making this up, the words Follow Your Heart. Depression And then the story jumps forward half a century and everyone's dying which SHOULD cheer me up, given what I think about these two, but in fact it reminds me that all Twoo Luv stories pretty much end this way. There's a REASON why we usually end with a wedding, you know. At my age I do NOT need reminding that if we're lucky we'll end up holding each other's arthritic hands in a nursing home. And what really gets me is that of course they've lived wildly successful artistic lives because OF COURSE Noah has reawakened the artist in Allie that was stomped on by Life and she's become famous. Even though the Allie we see in the backstory is just a bundle of sexual and emotional neediness with none of the drive and passion of a real artist. I mean if she were that great she'd be producing art without Noah having to tell her to do it, right? And then when we jump forward she's completely lost the plot anyway, so basically Allie remains entirely devoid of character. And Noah's just Wet Poet Type, Standard Issue. Did I say earlier that I can see why people enjoy this book? Well, yes. If you like stories without much depth that are engineered to get the tears flowing and make you feel all AHHHHH at the end, grab a box of tissues and dig in. On second thought, watch the movie because I believe it may be better. Oh look, here it is! Yep, its all wet.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Colleen

    As an author, I learned that this romantic, simple style is not my cup of tea. Although I enjoy cheesy comedies (the work of Capra springs to mind), I don't yearn to write them myself. The original love story of this novel was a little too pat and plain-- it was too clear that this was the love of a lifetime. Perhaps I'm jaded, but I really think a lifetime of love is more irritating-- after all, no two people can be absolutely perfect for each other. In fact, that irritation and friction, and l As an author, I learned that this romantic, simple style is not my cup of tea. Although I enjoy cheesy comedies (the work of Capra springs to mind), I don't yearn to write them myself. The original love story of this novel was a little too pat and plain-- it was too clear that this was the love of a lifetime. Perhaps I'm jaded, but I really think a lifetime of love is more irritating-- after all, no two people can be absolutely perfect for each other. In fact, that irritation and friction, and learning how to live with each other is what impresses me so much about long term relationships. I'm amazed that my parents are still together 29 years later because I know they've annoyed the hell out of each other-- and yet they were willing to work through that frustration because they believed their relationship (and our family) was worth it. The writing style in the beginning of the novel reminded me of my own writing during high school-- that rush of first love, that hope that you've found that one person to complete you and make your life worthwhile. For me, the most interesting, compelling part of The Notebook was the last segment. (If you haven't read the book, be aware that rest of this review will contain spoilers.) When the main character's love for his wife of forty-nine years triumphs even through Alzheimer's relentless blanket of memories, I was inspired. More than their love for each other, and the miracle that was their relationship, I was touched by Noah's willingness to live life in the present moment. At the end of their life together, Noah's goal each day is to fall in love with his wife again, even though she doesn't remember him. Even if he never sees that flash of recognition in her eyes, he is satisfied, as shown by this passage: There is beauty where we sit this afternoon, Allie and I. This is the pinnacle of my life. They are here at the creek: the birds, the geese, my friends. Their bodies float on the cool water, which reflects bits and pieces of their colors and make them seem larger than they really are. Allie too is taken in by their wonder, and little by little we get to know each other again. My goal is to say and truly believe that line in the middle every day: "This is the pinnacle of my life." That is the best lesson of the novel: to find happiness in simply being alive and appreciating the beauty and love around us. (What? I read a cheesy book! You'd BETTER expect a cheesy review!)

  25. 5 out of 5

    Aishu Rehman

    I loved this book!!! I would recommend it to anyone, and it's by far the best romance book I've ever read. It's one of my favorite books, in general, ever!!! I’m pretty sure some guys would like it, too. I just watched the movie, and that was really good too! And like my eighth grade English teacher said, it included everything that was in the book, which is really rare! I loved them both. I don't know which I liked better; the book or the movie! Maybe the book, but only because you get to see h I loved this book!!! I would recommend it to anyone, and it's by far the best romance book I've ever read. It's one of my favorite books, in general, ever!!! I’m pretty sure some guys would like it, too. I just watched the movie, and that was really good too! And like my eighth grade English teacher said, it included everything that was in the book, which is really rare! I loved them both. I don't know which I liked better; the book or the movie! Maybe the book, but only because you get to see how hard it is for Allie to decide who she really wants to be with-Noah or Lon. Either way, everyone should read the book and watch the movie!

  26. 4 out of 5

    ♡ ᴅ ʀ ᴇ ᴀ ᴍ ♡

    The Reading Rush - Read a book you meant to read last year - Read and watch a book to movie adaptation *3.5 / 5 stars Is The Notebook sappy? Yes. Cheesy? Yes. And romantic? Also yesss. I would say that I like this book and do I like it as much as I like the movie? No, of course. In the book, I think it would be better if the author told more details about the summer Allie and Noah spent together because when I read about this in the book, I really don’t understand why they loved each othe The Reading Rush - Read a book you meant to read last year - Read and watch a book to movie adaptation *3.5 / 5 stars Is The Notebook sappy? Yes. Cheesy? Yes. And romantic? Also yesss. I would say that I like this book and do I like it as much as I like the movie? No, of course. In the book, I think it would be better if the author told more details about the summer Allie and Noah spent together because when I read about this in the book, I really don’t understand why they loved each other that much. OK, I might not understand love at all, I know but anyway, I think it needs more details. Apart from that, the ending of the book is kinda weird for me. I had decided to give this 4 stars before but the ending made me change my mind, so 3.5 stars for this. P.S. Don’t misunderstand me. I like this book indeed. Though I didn’t tell what I love about it, it doesn’t mean I hate it!😂

  27. 4 out of 5

    Amber J

    I try to express only my most honest opinion in a spoiler-free way. If you feel anything in my review is a spoiler and is not already hidden in spoiler brackets please let me know. Thank you. Wow. This book had me in tears by the end. This is the first time I have ever read this book. I kind of knew what to expect though as I had watched the movie already, (who hasn't) but there are a lot of differences between the book and movie. The movie was full of drama and angst, but the book was more of a I try to express only my most honest opinion in a spoiler-free way. If you feel anything in my review is a spoiler and is not already hidden in spoiler brackets please let me know. Thank you. Wow. This book had me in tears by the end. This is the first time I have ever read this book. I kind of knew what to expect though as I had watched the movie already, (who hasn't) but there are a lot of differences between the book and movie. The movie was full of drama and angst, but the book was more of a quiet yet passionate sort of story. Honestly, I love them both. I'm glad I finished this as night cause I now want to cuddle in close with my husband to feel loved and safe. This book hit home hard for me. I was raised by my grandmother and even called her mom, she was diagnosed with Alzheimer's when I was a child. Died about 10 years later. It was emotional for me, and also reminded me of my greatest fear. There are a lot of diseases I am afraid of, but none more than Alzheimer's. It is truly a terrifying disease. The love that they have for each other in this book is incredible. I love how they are so sure of each other and to discover more about there lives after the story of how they got together. It sounds like an amazing relationship built on honesty and respect, and not focused on the attraction aspect of it. Although out in the real world I would have said that relationships that begin with cheating are usually destined to fail. I also feel that realistically 14 years is an insane amount of time to not get over someone. But this is why some books are only based on real-life and have lots of fiction in between to make it interesting. All in all, I'm so glad I choose to give the book a shot. Makes me want to watch the movie again, but then I'm afraid I'll want to read the book again, and on and on the cycle with continue lol. I noticed there is a sequel to this book that follows one of the daughters and her husband it looks like. I'll be putting that on my to-read list as well. 5 amazing stars for a great romance and a truly emotional story. How I choose my rating: 1* Hated it. I had to force myself to finish it. 2** Didn't like it. I didn't hate it but not sure why I finished it other than for some closure. 3*** I liked it. I had some issues with it, but as a whole it was good. I probably won't reread ever, but there is a chance I might finish the series. (If part of one) But if not it's not a huge loss. 4**** I really liked this book. Maybe not a work of genius, but highly entertaining. I might reread this, and I will finish the series. (If part of one) I would recommend to those I know hold interest in this book's content. 5***** I loved this book. I found little to no issues with it at all. I will be rereading this and probably more than once. I will finish the series and reread it multiple times. (If part of one) I will recommend this book to EVERYONE!!!!

  28. 5 out of 5

    Saadia B. || Hustle, Bustle and Hurdles

    The first half of the book was good until Noah and Allie’s love started to suffocate me. They were ex boyfriend and girlfriend who drifted apart when Allie moved away. Allie was about to get married to another man but decided to meet Noah one last time which rekindled their love and united them. They got married and had an amazing life. Allie was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease later in her life. She started forgetting things and eventually lost all her memory. Everyday in the hospital Noah u The first half of the book was good until Noah and Allie’s love started to suffocate me. They were ex boyfriend and girlfriend who drifted apart when Allie moved away. Allie was about to get married to another man but decided to meet Noah one last time which rekindled their love and united them. They got married and had an amazing life. Allie was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease later in her life. She started forgetting things and eventually lost all her memory. Everyday in the hospital Noah used to tell her stories regarding their love, children and life in general. The book ended with Noah and Allie kissing one another - the moment when Allie remembered everything. This bizarre and out of box ending ruined the entire book for me. Yes love is powerful but showing it as a miracle was too much for characters who were in their late eighties. The entire story revolved around love pointlessly and ended on it too without any plot.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Anish Kohli

    *looks at his own rating nervously* Are you guys gonna hate me? Bash me? No? Good! Bcz one needs to have the freedom to dislike or hate any book, no matter how well received it is in general. I picked this book bcz of a suggestion and well, as the rating tells you, it didn’t work out well. Not that I hated the book but I found it to be like an incessant droning voice. If anyone, most of you, like or love how this book reads, I am truly happy for you but for me personally it was so so so bland tha *looks at his own rating nervously* Are you guys gonna hate me? Bash me? No? Good! Bcz one needs to have the freedom to dislike or hate any book, no matter how well received it is in general. I picked this book bcz of a suggestion and well, as the rating tells you, it didn’t work out well. Not that I hated the book but I found it to be like an incessant droning voice. If anyone, most of you, like or love how this book reads, I am truly happy for you but for me personally it was so so so bland that I almost didn’t write a review for this. I mean look at it objectively, what’s the story here, really. Allie and Noah were in love way back when they spent a summer together and then they got separated. They spent 14 years apart, which might I mention are 14 more years than they spent together but are still unable to move on. One fine day Allie, who is engaged to another guy now btw, decides that she really needs to see Noah even if it risks her marriage and off she goes. They meet, they “make love” and then they fall in love all over again and now Allie needs to make a decision about which guy to choose. That’s the nutshell of this book. The characters are completely two dimensional and the story was super flat and the prose boring. There are no touching moments in the book that justify all the falling in love. There are no real moments here. The part towards the end with Allie and Noah being sickly is solely there to add a bittersweet feeling of having spent a life together which must end and I gotta tell you that it falls so flat. Finally, there is also my pet peeve in this book (not exactly but close enough) that completely makes it a waste of time for me. Allie betrays 2 guys in this book. Allie goes and sleeps with Noah (they were in love, I get it, but even so) while she was already going out with another guy at that time. And she says she was glad it happened. Guess what, I am not! Then years later, Allie repeats the act, only this time it’s even more serious. This time around Allie is engaged with a decent guy who she lies to in order to come see Noah and then she sleeps with Noah despite being engaged to someone else and having her marriage in 3 weeks! You can look at it and say that she was so deeply in love with Noah but from where I sit, I see this as a betrayal and cheating on your partner. More than that, the repetition of the act makes me doubt Allie as a character, makes me feel that this is her nature and then it makes me ask myself what is to stop her from doing the same to Noah. For me, this is an act that I find unforgivable. Sure this isn’t exactly an extra marital setting but for me, engaged and married aren’t much different. It’s all about a commitment. If you can break one, then you can break the other. I also read in one of the reviews for this book that the author had the same situation of girl cheating on her fiancé in one of his other books. Now I am not sure if that is true but if it is, then it confirms what I felt through this book. The author is romanticizing cheating on your partner in the name of “love” and I find that absolutely abhorrent! I also wanna comment on the author’s writing style but I am sorta afraid that some defender of the book/author will rise up to teach me how to read the book and which genre it fits into and all that crap. But let’s be honest, the day that I let my fear of such people rule me and keep me from writing an honest review will be the day I quit GR for good. I found the author’s writing style very bland and poor, tbh. I didn’t see any spark there that would make me feel that this is a renowned author who has multiple books under his belt. I mean seriously, this is his writing style? This is so unimaginative and so lifeless. So damn dull that I can’t even. The writing on itself is completely unable to stimulate any emotions at all. I have come across writing styles like these only when I accept review copies from debut authors. Tbh with y’all, I have written review that are more poetic than this book. I am sorry but I failed to see just how this author is so well received. This book, this author is not for me.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Frankie Lovely

    1 star In a Word : boring Initial thoughts *Opens book* *Reads book* *Wonders if watching paint dry might actually be more exciting* *Closes book* *Yawns* The Story We’ve all seen the movie right? So it's that... but with all the emotion sucked out of it. Pros The beauty of lifetime love was represented in this story. The kind of love that leaves you falling in love with that person every day no matter what life brings your way. Like, real life love. Cons The romance was a snooze fest. So 1 star In a Word : boring Initial thoughts *Opens book* *Reads book* *Wonders if watching paint dry might actually be more exciting* *Closes book* *Yawns* The Story We’ve all seen the movie right? So it's that... but with all the emotion sucked out of it. Pros The beauty of lifetime love was represented in this story. The kind of love that leaves you falling in love with that person every day no matter what life brings your way. Like, real life love. Cons The romance was a snooze fest. So here’s what I expected from this book... Lots of inner turmoil and heart-wrenching romantic gestures…. Also, kissing in the rain… sexy tear filled kissing in the rain. Like the kind of ugly emotional kissing where you can’t tell whose tears are whose or where your soul ends and his begins. I expected to be rendered an utter emotional mess by this book! This is not what I got I don’t know if it’s Spark’s writing style or the perspective of the story or what. But I felt incredibly detached from everyone and everything in this story. Seriously, I should have been a blubbering mess! I wanted to be heartbroken and feel struggle and longing and pain and really and truly the only emotion I felt was boredom. It went beyond meh and into the realm of “Please make it stop I can’t handle the extreme nothingness of this book anymore”. In Conclusion I would suggest watching the movie and maybe using the book as a doorstop.

Add a review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Loading...
We use cookies to give you the best online experience. By using our website you agree to our use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy.