Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Book Review: The Lucky One (dog, war veteran, love)

The Lucky One, by Nicholas Sparks (Grand Central Publishing, 2008, 326 pages, $24.99)


Who hasn’t read and loved books by Richard Paul Evans and Nicholas Sparks (The Notebook, Message in a Bottle, A Walk to Remember, Nights in Rodanthe, [all movies as well] and more)? Mostly ‘chick’ books but also date movies, they are books to keep - inspiring, feel-good stories.

He Gets the Dogs Right!

The Lucky One is no exception: a bit different, perhaps, to appeal to a different readership, The Lucky One centers around an Iraq war veteran and – dogs! And Nicholas Sparks gets the dogs right! They are not merely minor characters.

Something for Everyone – And A Dog Named Zeus

Elizabeth-Beth and young son Ben, a brother who left for Iraq and never came back, ex-husband-Deputy and ‘good ol’ boy’ Keith whose family owns the county, Nana, Logan the Marine, a cross-country walk with Zeus to search for and thank the ‘woman in the photo,’ and the mother of all rainstorms which lasted for days. Something for everyone. And a dog named Zeus to keep us focused on relationships and the bond between a human and a dog.

Who is ‘The Lucky One’?

I can’t help you on this one: you’ll have to read the book to find out. But you will agree. Even though you read faster and faster, and perhaps can guess at some developments in the plot, you will feel warmly satisfied with the story. It all falls into place – the myriad of details that seem so disjointed at first, fall into place in the most perfectly believable way.

What would I change about The Lucky One? I would delete references to ‘dog obedience,’ ‘commands,’ ‘firm guidance with the leash,’ ‘Come! Good Come.’ But, all in all, Nicholas Sparks gets the dogs right and, in the end, that is all that matters.

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