One of our book club members asked that we all read this one. Dear John, by Nicholas Sparks.
Dear John is a romance novel by American writer Nicholas Sparks released in 2006. Its plot is an adaptation to present day’s American culture of three plays Marius, Fanny and César, called la Trilogie Marseillaise written by French author Marcel Pagnol c. 1930. Sparks took inspiration from the real-life story of his cousin Todd Vance who served in the U.S. Armed Forces. It was on The New York Times Best Seller list in 2007.
The story is about a couple who fall in love over one summer. They are separated during the man’s military service. John Tyree, the main character, has a father with Asperger’s syndrome. The story is partially set in Wilmington, North Carolina where John’s father was a single parent who had difficulty having meaningful conversation with his son and has an obsession with coin collecting. John knows there is something different about him but he has never found out what it is. Feeling a lack of direction and no strong fatherly influence in his life, John enlisted in the U.S. Armed Forces.
John returns home on leave from the army when he gets news of his father’s death. After the return he seeks out Savannah, where he is surprised to learn of her life events following her marriage to another man. It was obvious to John, Savannah, and even her new husband, that Savannah still had love for John. But he decided to let Savannah go- because he cared about her more than himself. Although drained by battle overseas and the loss of Savannah, he realizes that due to a legacy from his father, he’s able to express his love in an unexpected way.