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I think the title of the book "A bend in the road" perfectly sums up the nature of the story. It's about a man called Miles and how he endeavours to get his life together after the death of his wife and childhood sweetheart Missy. He has a young boy who struggles at school. At a parents evening he meets his boy's teacher, Sarah who has her own history. The two begin to get closer, and closer. They reach a point where they could proceed to be happy together, but the unveiling of secret causes upheaval. Will their relationship be strong enough to overcome these difficulties and shocking circumstances?!?
As with any Sparks novel, I was really moved and gripped from the the first page until the end of the book, Sparks really makes you feel the emotions of the characters and draws you into their day to day life and how they cope with the "bend in the road". I think its quite realistic too, people don't realise what a small world we live in how things could be linked between situations and people that may come to light later.
A fantastic read. Must have for any Sparks fan. Didn't want to spoil too much so please read it for a fuller account!!
Price- bought it from charity shop, only 50p! Available from Amazon used for about £5 or less, or new for £7.99 last time I checked.
Having watched two film adaptations of Nicholas Spark's books, both of which I love, I decided to finally read one. I chose A Bend in the Road simply because it was the only one available in the library and I wasn't going to buy an author I hadn't read before since I firmly believe that the book and the movie are two very different things.
Even though this was my first Nicholas Sparks' book, I could see that it had the author's name written all over it in terms of storyline and structure. Like A Walk to Remember and The Notebook, this one too is mostly in flashback. Also, like the other two, the beginning gives the impression of a tragic event having taken place without actually telling us what. I think I am getting ahead of myself however. Very simply, the book is about Miles Ryan, a deputy sheriff in the small town of New Bern and Sarah Andrews, a teacher at the local elementary school. Miles, who has spent his whole life in New Bern, is a grieving widower with a young son named Jonah. Having lost his wife, Missy, in a hit-and-run accident two years ago, he has not managed to move on yet and both he and his son are still haunted by the memories. Sarah, on the other hand, has just moved to this quiet little town after a painful divorce and is fighting her own demons. The two meet when Sarah calls Miles to discuss his son who is has not been doing very well after the death of his mother and are immediately attracted to each other. However both are emotionally fragile and it takes them time to accept that attraction and build a relationship which is greatly aided by their mutual interst in Jonah.
This is not all there is to the book however. While the relationship between Miles and Sarah blossoms, there is a continuous theme of the mystery surrounding Missy's death. For the past two years since the death of his wife, Miles has been obsessed with locating the driver who 'killed' his wife that fateful day and bringing him to justice. As he gets closer and closer to Sarah, however, all three of them start putting the past behind them until a new development in Missy's case brings the obsession back and a terrible secret is revealed. And thus our protagonists come to The Bend in the Road.
The book is mostly in third person with equal attention being given to the story and perspective of Miles and Sarah. There is also a first person narrative in the form of a kind of a diary (this isn't clear though) being written by an unidentified character. The writing isn't too brilliant but the book is gripping enough. I finished the 340 odd pages in one night so that does say something about the level of interest it manages to retain I guess. Personally I couldn't put it down but then I can never put a book down until I've finished it so that might not mean anything. The story while being absorbing is quite predictable and I figured out what would happen quite early on. But as in the movies, it is more about the relationship than the actual events with Sparks so I did not really mind the predictability. Even with the relationship though it has not been as beautifully portrayed as I found the relationships in the movies to be. I cannot say if that has to do more with the writing style or the strength of the characters. I think I will go with the writing which I found pretty average. The characters are likable enough and it is very easy to feel sympathy for the neglected little poor boy. All in all a good read I would say and I might go for another one as it does provide some light entertainment. I would recommend reading it but not really buying it.
A Bend in the Road by Nicholas Sparks was published in 2001. Set in New Bern, North Carolina the story follows Miles Ryan, a deputy sheriff, whose wife Missy was killed in a hit and run accident 2 years before. Miles feels that his life ended with his wife's death and he wants to bring whoever is responsible to justice. Then he meets his son Jonah's teacher, Sarah, who is recovering from a difficult divorce. Sarah and Miles reach out for each other and are soon falling in love. However, they are closely linked but they don't know it yet. When they find out the shocking secret it leads them to make a heartbreaking choice.
This book covers a lot of different angles. It focuses on the sadness that all the main characters have had in their lives, this is very typical of a Nicholas Sparks book and I think it's what makes his books so likeable. It also covers the guilt faced by Missy's killer which adds an additional depth to the book and I think it's what makes this particular book special. The way the guilt has been written into the book is not a method that Sparks has used before and I think that it works well.
I would recommend this book but make sure you have a box of tissues on stand-by.
I have now read three of Nicholas Sparks Books and I have been very impressed by all of them so I was really looking forward to reading this one. I can honestly say it was just as good as the previous ones.
This story is set in America and is about a sheriff called miles Ryan and his son Jonah. Miles lost his wife two years previously in a hit and run accident when she was out jogging. Missy, his wife was his childhood sweetheart and he took the death very bad. Miles is just about to start getting his life back on track and try to move on for the sake of his son but he still has the fact that no one was ever caught for the death of his wife and he has spent so long trying to find the driver of the car.
Miles is in for a surprise when a new teacher turns up in town and she is teaching his son Jonah and soon discovers that he is very far behind and is still unable to read and write. He has been let off with this in the past because of loosing his mother at such a young age but Sarah, his new teacher is about to put this right and get him up to the standard of the other children in his class. Sarah and Miles have a meeting and discuss the help which they can give to Jonah and they both realise that they have an attraction to each other.
Sarah also has her own past as she moved to New Barn after her husband divorced her and she too is reluctant to move on and start a new life but this changes when she and Miles finally get together. Miles and Sarah become extremely closes but there is always the thought of Missy in the back of Miles mind and how he never managed to find the driver.
Will Sarah and Miles be able to start their new lives together or will the revelation from someone close to Sarah make sure this never happens?
Please don't think that I have given away too much of the plot as there is so much more to read about and some side stores which also happen in this book.
I found that this book was wonderful and totally engaging right from the start. This is not just an straight forward story as it is told in two parts with the story of Miles and Sarah making the majority of it, there is also small chapters in-between the main ones which have been written by the driver of the car and how he is dealing with what he did and how he is struggling to get on with his life. I found this to be an excellent way of putting both sides of the story across and not once from what the driver told us was I able to work out who he or indeed she was.
I found the characters to all be very good I loved all of them, despite the book being
mainly about Sarah, Miles and Jonah I found the addition of a lot of other characters a warm welcome and they did seem to give the story some depth. I did like all of them apart from the ones which we were not supposed to like, the criminals which Miles and his boss Charlie would talk about.
The story was very easy to read and get all of the information from and I just found that like with the others I have read by Nicholas Sparks I was unable to put this one down. I just had to keep reading to see what the outcome would be and who in fact was driving the car. I loved how Nicholas was able to et me to feel so many different emotions throughout the book, one minute I would be chuckling at something funny which Jonah had said and the next I would be welling up as Miles would be sitting watching old home video which showed Missy. I loved how he was able to do this just from his writing style.
The story was set in New Barn as with the previous books and I liked the familiarity with the town despite this book being set in the 1980's which is later than the previous ones. The town as was described was a laid back and slow quiet place where everyone knew everybody and they all lived in an old fashioned way and had not been tempted by the modern day fashions or trends, I have some wonderful images of what New Barn looks like from the book.
This book was written by Nicholas Sparks and I am still amazed that a man was able to write such a wonderful and moving love story which s also filled with tragedy. It was published by Sphere and the retail price on the back cover is £6.99. I did not pay this price and managed to get hold of a copy for just 99p from EBay. This book is also available for less on Amazon.
I am definitely going to recommend this book as it is moving, gripping and full of wonderful characters which all make up such a great story.