What If? – A Review of The Best of Me
What if you had the chance to reconnect with your first and one true love 25 years after you said goodbye? Would you still be able to walk away? This is the question at the center of Nicholas Sparks’ new audio book, The Best of Me. In true Sparks fashion he weaves a tender story with twists, turns, ups, downs and as always an ending that will pull at your heart strings.
Long lost loves, Dawson and Amanda, have both moved on in their lives but seem to live a flat existence. Until external circumstances bring them back together for one fateful weekend that will change their lives and the lives of the people in their hometown forever. With characters that range from the overbearing mother, alcoholic husband, strong silent types, and violent back road brutes (the Cole relations left me feeling unsettled and never wanting to meet any of them even on a sunny day), Sparks brings to life a wonderfully troubled world that leaves Dawson and Amanda, always on edge.
The Best of Me is read by Sean Pratt and he does a respectable job. His way of creating different vocal tones for the characters allows the listener to follow the story easily. Told in both the present time and through flashbacks, the narrative unfolds seamlessly. The pacing towards the end of the book is perfection with its quick sections, drawing the listener into the lives and chaos of Dawson and Amanda.
Anyone who has listened to a Nicholas Sparks audio book (or seen one of the movies based on them) will have a sense of how the storyline is laid out. And yet for me this did not detract from the wonderful story that will leave you asking, What if?