How do you learn to trust again? Denise Hilton, a young single mother, is driving through Edenton, North Carolina, when her car skids off the road during a storm. With her is her four-year-old son, Kyle, a boy with severe learning disabilities for whom she has sacrificed everything. When volunteer fireman Taylor McAden finds her she is unconscious ...
How do you learn to trust again? Denise Hilton, a young single mother, is driving through Edenton, North Carolina, when her car skids off the road during a storm. With her is her four-year-old son, Kyle, a boy with severe learning disabilities for whom she has sacrificed everything. When volunteer fireman Taylor McAden finds her she is unconscious and bleeding, but when she wakes an even more chilling truth becomes clear: Kyle is gone. When confronted by raging fires or deadly accidents, Taylor feels compelled to take terrifying risks to save lives, and the search for Kyle is no exception. But there is one leap of faith Taylor cannot bring himself to make - to commit to a relationship. Will this chance meeting with Denise prove any different?
Sparks never disappoints me. Even when I think his story will be too predictable or sappy, it isn't. He took a simple plot and added a depth of emotion that took me by surprise. It was a good thing I wasn't still on the bus when I got to the end of this one; my tears would've embarassed me. You wouldn't think a story about a guy afraid of commitment could be so good. In all of his books you learn something new; in this case, about speech problems. He makes life in a small town appealing, and he uses humour to make his characters likeable. The only thing I've noticed is that in all his books, there are no characters with different skin colour or even many ethnic people of any kind, but then maybe that's what Sparks' own life is like. He needs to get out more.
Apr 27, 2007
Couldn't put it down!
This was another can't-get-enough-of-it book. It's a page turner and you really want to find out how it turns out as quickly as possible. Sparks throws you a few curve balls in this one (like most of his reads). Well worth your time.
Publishers Weekly, 2000-08-11 Secret traumas again haunt Sparks's characters, in the author's fourth novel (after The Notebook; Message in a Bottle; A Walk to Remember). Denise Holden, the 29-year-old heroine, is destitute and forced to live in her mother's old house in Edenton, N.C. She's also the single mother of a handicapped child, Kyle, a four-year-old with "auditory processing problems" that render him unable to express himself or to fully understand others. Though she doesn't suspect it, Denise is on a literal collision course with true love. After she smashes her car into a tree and wakes up to discover Kyle missing, she finds deliverance in the form of Taylor McAden, dashing firefighter and compulsive risk taker, who rescues Kyle, too. Since Taylor enjoys an instant, unprecedented rapport with Kyle, there is little standing in the way of burgeoning romance. Trouble comes, however, when Denise learns of Taylor's checkered romantic past. Taylor's inability to commit, it seems, is somehow tied to his compulsive heroism, of which numerous histrionic examples are described. Denise's quest to find the source of Taylor's emotional distance takes up the final third of the book. The story here is mostly a pretext for the emotional assault that Sparks delivers, but when he manages to link affect to action, the result is cunningly crafted melodrama. These occasions are rare, though; more often Sparks gets bogged down in interminable interior monologue. Because these characters are preordained lovers, their feelings prescribed by fiction conventions, their psychology amounts to little more than a profusion of banality. Yet Sparks's narrative acquires immediacy when his characters' exaggerated emotions compel immoderate actions, and his readers will surely delight at these moments of heightened expressiveness. 1 million first printing; 24-city author tour. (Sept.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
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