The Choice by Nicholas Sparks

Synopsis:

Set amid the austere beauty of the North Carolina coast, Nicholas Sparks tells the story of Travis Parker, a small-town veterinarian who’s perfectly content with the active and exciting life he leads. Since he uses his spare time bungee jumping and swimming with the dolphins, he can’t shake the belief that a woman would simply slow him down. That is, until Gabby Holland enters his life.

Gabby, Travis’s new neighbor, is in love with her boyfriend of three years, and wants nothing more than to start planning the wedding she’s always dreamed about. However, there is a story within a story and the connection between Travis and Gabby is just a beginning. As their tale unfolds, their relationship becomes something different–with much higher stakes. With echoes of THE NOTE BOOK abound, listeners everywhere will fall in love.

This is the second Nicholas Sparks book I have read, and it was what drew me to this other books, all of which I have loved. The story is set around Gabby, a new woman in the neighbourhood and her neighbour Travis. Their relationship starts badly, but Travis is patient and their relationship develops, and helps Gabby make new friends in the town. The story then jumps to the present day and their current situation, which broke my heart…

Sparks is a wonderful writer – engaging, amusing and writes realistic stories that are full of life, pain and joy. I was gripped right from the start. I loved watching Travis and Gabby’s relationship develop – from neighbours, to friends to more. The description of outings, the scenery and the fun and friendship were gorgeous. My favourite part was when they were out in Travis’s boat with his friends and their children. It was lovely to read.

I really liked both Gabby and Travis. I could relate to and empathise with both, and I felt myself willing the best for both of them. That said, my favourite character was Steph, Travis’s sister. She was forward, fun and wanted the best for everyone. She was there when Travis needed her and she came across as someone I would like to be friends with. I don’t think there was a character I didn’t like – Sparks writes people who I want to know and who I like reading about.

Yes, in true Sparks fashion there is a twist at the end. It wasn’t quite what I was expecting and it bought tears to my eyes. I liked  how Sparks played out the situation. I found my heart breaking, then relief washing over me, I almost cried at one point, and overall, felt satisfied with the read. This book really played on my emotions, it was great. Top marks and a big recommendation from me.

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