Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Review: The Last Song by Nicholas Sparks


Seventeen year old Veronica "Ronnie" Miller's life was turned upside-down when her parents divorced and her father moved from New York City to Wilmington, North Carolina. Three years later, she remains angry and alientated from her parents, especially her father...until her mother decides it would be in everyone's best interest if she spent the summer in Wilmington with him. Ronnie's father, a former concert pianist and teacher, is living a quiet life in the beach town, immersed in creating a work of art that will become the centerpiece of a local church.

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Plot: 4/5
When Ronnie is sent to live with her father for the summer, she was hesitant, unexcited, and most of all, angry. Little did she know it would turn out to be one of the most epic summers of her life. While staying with her dad, she meets an array of characters that change her life. There's Blaze, the troubled teenager who befriends her; Marcus, the mysterious bad boy who brings nothing but trouble; and Will, the golden boy she never expected she'd fall for. As Ronnie falls in love for the first time, she also slowly rekindles her relationship with her father, and discovers some secrets about him that turn her life around. The Last Song is a kaleidoscope of feelings readers will enjoy.

Creativity: 3/5
The Last Song is a coming-of-age story that takes a deeper look into love- love for oneself, love for family, love for friends. In one summer, rebellious Ronnie discovers the true meaning of that seemingly simple four-letter word through the different experiences, both good and bad, she faces in the laid-back North Carolina town of Wrightsville Beach. It's what readers expect of a Nicholas Sparks novel, except with a broader appeal.

Characters: 5/5
The characters in The Last song are all very well-developed. Even though there are quite a number that play big parts in the story, their roles are crystal clear but at the same time the readers can still dig deeper into their characters and see the different layers that make each person the way he or she is. Ronnie, for one, is a stellar character. she starts off as angry and rebellious, but as the story progresses, the readers get to see just why she's that way. There's always an explanation behind everything, which readers get to uncover as they read on. The character of Will is also one female readers are bound to fall for- he's the kind of guy little girls' fairytales are made of.

Writing: 4/5
In his usual fashion, Nicholas Sparks crafts another emotional rollercoaster of a novel. When it comes to writing, he doesn't doo things halfway. When things are sad, they're really sad, and when things are supposed to be romantic, they sure as hell are. Nicholas Sparks' words delight the senses, which makes for a wonderful reading experience.

Impact: 5/5
This book has everything that makes a summer memorable. First love? Check. Friendships and falling-outs? Check. Family secrets? Check. It's a well-rounded novel that touches many different aspects of a person's life. The Last Song is a moving piece of literature that will have readers in tears as the story comes to an end.

Overall: 4/5
I'm not exactly a Nicholas Sparks fanatic. I enjoyed some of his books, such as A Walk to Remember and Dear John, but I was never the type that bought every book he released. I found the story of The Last Song interesting, though, so I went out and got it anyway. I'm a fan of poignant stories, so it was a good for me. I enjoyed reading about Ronnie's life... How she fell in love with Will, and how she fixed the once-severed ties with her dad. I'm a music buff, so the fact that music played a big part in the story was a plus, too.But what I liked most about it was the fact that it gave emphasis to values- open-mindedness, trust, and most of all, forgiveness. It made me want to be a better person, believe it or not! Overall, it was a great story that had be smiling one moment, and weeping the next. If you haven't read this yet, I suggest you get yourself a copy. It's worth the read.

2 comments:

  1. Aww this is an amazing review! This was my first Nicholas Sparks novel and I really liked it. :D

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  2. Great review! I saw the movie first and I loved it. There were tears at the end, definitely. I had read The Notebook and The Wedding so after seeing the movie of The Last Song and the movie of Dear John, I HAD to read both books to know the "facts" and what was missing on screen. Happily, not too much in Dear John and a bit more in The Last Song but nothing that took away from the story. The book made me cry as well.
    I was also surprised to find out in the acknowledgements that Miley had named the character which means she was an influence on the book and the way it read made me feel like Sparks wrote this entire book with her in mind.
    I borrowed these books from the library but I will definitely by them in the future (or maybe someone will gift them to me :)
    After reading these, I also picked up Nights in Rodanthe and The Lucky One from the library and Nicholas Sparks wows in both of those too. He has me hooked!

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