Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Safe Haven by Nicholas Sparks

From Goodreads: When a mysterious young woman named Katie appears in the small North Carolina town of Southport, her sudden arrival raises questions about her past. Beautiful yet self-effacing, Katie seems determined to avoid forming personal ties until a series of events draws her into two reluctant relationships: one with Alex, a widowed store owner with a kind heart and two young children; and another with her plainspoken single neighbor, Jo. Despite her reservations, Katie slowly begins to let down her guard, putting down roots in the close-knit community and becoming increasingly attached to Alex and his family. But even as Katie begins to fall in love, she struggles with the dark secret that still haunts and terrifies her . . . a past that set her on a fearful, shattering journey across the country, to the sheltered oasis of Southport. With Jo's empathic and stubborn support, Katie eventually realizes that she must choose between a life of transient safety and one of riskier rewards . . . and that in the darkest hour, love is the only true safe haven.

I would have to say that this was not what I expected from Nicholas Sparks and then, a little bit of it was exactly what I expected. When I think of Sparks I think of love stories that are a bit over the top, too sappy for my taste but this book, Safe Haven,  had a bit of an edge to it. Sparks was able to write about domestic violence in such a convincing way that he had me scared. It was the same "edge of you seat, biting your fingernails" feeling I got with Backseat Saints, where you just want to scream at the woman, "Look out!" That suspense was a great surprise and made for an exciting read. But....it is still after all Nicholas Sparks so, yes, there was some drippy sentimentality at times that just made me want to puncture my own ear drum so it would stop. I am a married woman, I know a lot of other married women, none of us talk about our husbands with the gooey awe that the heroines in Sparks' books employ - we love them, we just don't worship them. I will be eager to hear what devoted Sparks fans think of this one.

Another one that counts for all sorts of challenges....


bermudaonion said...

I know what you mean - Sparks' books are pretty gushy.

yedelstein said...

I read most of Nicholas Sparks' books.
I think he is a good author and I liked his writing.
The only problem I have with his books is that most of his story lines are about the same. You can predict what will happen before you open the book.
I did not read a Nicholas Spark book in a while. Is this book different then the others? Not as predictable?

Espana said...

There is always a growth process, be it conquering fears, correcting mistakes or forgiveness on the road of insight into the heart toward unconditional love. We can always count on his quality, tasteful writing that overflows with touching, heartwarming and perfectly chosen words that always stir the emotions.