Dear John Audio CD – Audiobook, Unabridged
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From Publishers Weekly
Hot on the heels of True Believer and sequel At First Sight, Sparks returns with the story of ne'er-do-well-turned-army-enlistee John Tyree, 23, and well-to-do University of North Carolina special education major Savannah Lynn Curtis. John, who narrates, has been raised by a socially backward single postal-worker dad obsessed with coin collecting (he has Asperger's syndrome). John bypasses college for the overseas infantry; Savannah spends her college summers volunteering. When they meet, he's on leave, and she's working with Habitat for Humanity (he rescues her sinking purse at the beach). John has a history of one-night stands; Savannah's a virgin. He's an on-and-off drinker; she's a teetotaler. Attraction and values conflict the rest of the summer, but the deal does not close. Savannah longs for John to come home; her friend Tim longs to have a relationship with her. On the brink of John and Savannah's finally getting together, 9/11 happens, and John re-ups. Savannah's letters come less and less frequently, and before you know it, he receives the expected "Dear John" letter. Sparks's novel brims with longing. (Oct. 30)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
John Tyree is on the fast track to nowhere. At 20 he has no real relationship with his strange and dispassionate father, no attachments to anyone else, and no job, so after breaking up with his girlfriend, he decides to join the army. Military life does alter him, yet he remains disconnected. While home visiting his father in Wilmington, North Carolina, however, he meets Savannah Curtis, a college coed who is everything he is not. A warm, morally straight-ahead woman with a commitment to special education, she captures John's heart and he hers. In the short time they spend together, he opens up to Savannah and true love develops as they plan for a future. Then September 11 changes everything. John feels that it is his duty to renew his commitment to the army, while Savannah wants him home with her. The good soldier now lives in dread of receiving a "Dear John" letter. Sparks, a perennially popular novelist whose name is synonymous with romance and bittersweet endings and whose work translates so readily to movies, lives up to his reputation with his latest novel, a tribute to courageous and self-sacrificing soldiers. Patty Engelmann
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
My experience has been that they all tug at your heartstrings and Dear John is no exception.
John Tyree is home on leave from the army when he meets Savannah Curtis. Their time together is short lived, but they quickly fall in love. John must return to his squad, but Savannah vows she will will wait for him. His time is almost up when 9/11 strikes and John re enlists. Can their love survive further time apart?
I listened to this in audio format. Holter Graham was the reader. I'm not sure if he naturally speaks with a Southern accent, but once in awhile I would find it slipping. He played John with a slow southern drawl that at times made him seem simple. Savannah's voice was easily identifiable, with a slightly different southern accent and a quicker manner of speaking.
I think the story is an excellent one, especially in today's times, when this scenario is being played out in many lives. Sparks finishes his tale with a different twist, again designed to make you reach for a tissue.
Now this is purely personal and I'm sure there will lots of dissenting opinions, but... I just didn't like Savannah. I found her overbearing, manipulative, selfish and too much of a know it all. I often wonder if in listening to an audio book, you form a different picture of a character than you might have in reading the book. I then watched the movie trailer and with the characters played by Channing Tatum and Amanda Seyfried , think I may change my mind again.
So, yes if you're looking for a heart string tugging read, this is definitely one for you. I'm more of an action girl myself, so found some of it a bit repetitive and slow going but I did enjoy the story.
Our hero John grew up with a silent, meticulously organized father that he didn't understand. In his teens he began to rebel, hanging out, playing pool and drinking. This continues for a number of years with John working menial jobs, getting several tattoos and going nowhere fast. Eventually John decides its time to grow up and he joins the army. In fact it's during 2 weeks leave that he first meets Savannah, diving into the ocean to rescue her sinking purse. Savannah is your stereotypical good-girl; raised in a stable family she's kind, pretty and hopes to save the world. It's also love at first sight for our couple despite the warnings from her tattoo phobic college friends. Together the pair plans a future together, counting down the days until John's discharge as Savannah helps him understand his father and he in turn feels contentment for the first time in his life.
On Sept 11 everything changes as John in a moment of patriotic loyalty chooses to re-up in the army, putting a hold on their marriage plans while he enters the war in Iraq. The two try to maintain a long distance relationship but the war changes John and the years apart put a strain on their deep love. When John's father grows ill he returns home but will he be too late to save both his relationship with his father and the love of his life?
I fell in love with John's character and surprisingly his father too. Each is well written and they felt like real people.Read more ›
This is about army sergeant John Tyree narrating his love for Savannah Curtis, the girl of his dreams, and their relationship. It is the typical boy meet girl love story in the post 9/11 world. Boy goes to war and girl waits for him to finish his tour of duty. Here the specific war is not important, the author doesn't delve into the effects it had on his characters. When John re-enlists it weighs heavily on their relationship. Will their love survive.....
This novel is a quick read; the characters are realistic enough and likable, the plot is very predictable and not complex. The story hovers around the ideals of love and how fragile it can be. Added are some unrealistic twists leading to appropriate sadness and some heart wrenching moments, bringing tears to your eyes. If you are a fan of soap opera, this book is for you.
The biggest problem with the book, however, is voice (with other smaller problems like describing the boring details of heating food in a microwave). The book is written with John as narrator (first person). John describes his experiences using words that don't match his rugged demeanour and therefore he doesn't seem real, just the creation of a writer describing someone else. Also, his voice wasn't unique; it sounded too similar to Wilson in "The Wedding". I think the book would have been better if he wrote it the third person and incorporated a lot more of the letter writing between John and Savannah. That way, the romance that developed would have been more tangible and believable by showing it instead of telling it through John's disjointed voice. The film does a better job at portraying the character of John and demonstrating the chemistry between the two young lovers.
In terms of writing style, again, it's basic. She may not sell as many books as Sparks, but I like Joshilyn Jackson's writing better because it has more depth when it comes to character development.
Most recent customer reviews
I read this book, then watched the movie. The book is so much better, a must read for any NS fan.Published on April 6 2011 by Daniel F. Silva
A bittersweet romance story, which was an easy read, but did not keep my interest. Not sure what I was expecting - just MORE. It was disappointing for me, but was an OK read.Published on Jan. 3 2011 by Gerrie
Shipping took a very long time I didn't think I was going to receive the book.Published on Sept. 2 2010 by chaynes
First off, I need to make some declarations before I get into the meat of my 'review'.
1) I don't write these reviews for Amazon, or its readers. I write them for *me*. Read more