Grand Central Publishing|March 26, 2013|Mass Market Paperbound|ISBN: 978-0-446-54763-5
“Everyone wanted to believe that endless love was possible. She’d believed in it once, too, back when she was eighteen.”
In the spring of 1984, high school students Amanda Collier and Dawson Cole fell deeply, irrevocably in love. Though they were from opposite sides of the tracks, their love for one another seemed to defy the realities of life in the small town of Oriental, North Carolina. But as the summer of their senior year came to a close, unforeseen events would tear the young couple apart, setting them on radically divergent paths.
Now, twenty-five years later, Amanda and Dawson are summoned back to Oriental for the funeral of Tuck Hostetler, the mentor who once gave shelter to their high school romance. Neither has lived the life they imagined…and neither can forget the passionate first love that forever changed their lives. As Amanda and Dawson carry out the instructions Tuck left behind for them, they realize that everything they thought they knew – about Tuck, about themselves, and about the dreams they held dear – was not as it seemed. Forced to confront painful memories, the two former lovers will discover undeniable truths about the choices they have made. And in the course of a single weekend, they will ask of the living, and the dead: Can love truly rewrite the past?
Amanda Collier and Dawson Cole were high school students in the spring of 1984. They lived in the small town of Oriental, North Carolina. Amanda was from a strict home whose parents kept close tabs on her and they didn’t like the fact that she was dating Dawson Cole. The Cole family was notoriously known in Oriental as a wild, troubled, fighting, kick-your-ass, family who caused more trouble than they were worth.
Ted and Abee Cole were the worst two offenders who’d always had it out for Dawson and Dawson’s own father was a carbon copy of the other two. Dawson worked for Tuck, an old gent who had a garage and each week Dawson’s father, along with Ted and Abee would come and take his pay cheque. It wasn’t worth Dawson’s time getting the crap beat out of him over a few measely dollars so he just handed the money over and let them be on their way. Dawson’s love for Amanda was all that mattered to him.
Once high school had come to an end, Dawson and Amanda would be going their separate ways. Amanda off to university, she hoped to become a teacher, and Dawson was staying in Oriental to continue to work with Tuck. He couldn’t afford to attend school anyway. Both Dawson and Amanda vowed to stay in touch and keep their relationship going despite the geographical distance between them. However, unforeseen events tore the young couple apart, setting them on radically divergent paths.
Dawson eventually moved away to New Orleans and ended up working on an oil rig. A tough job with lots of dangers but he worked thirty days on then had thirty days off. Amanda ended up married to, Frank, a dentist and they had four children.
Now, twenty-five years later, Amanda and Dawson both receive a call from a lawyer back in Oriental asking them to attend an appointment with him on a certain day at a certain time, and to attend the funeral of their dear old friend, Tuck.
Neither Dawson nor Amanda knew the other would be attending so their first re-meeting was bittersweet. Neither of them has lived the life they had imagined and neither of them can forget the passionate first love that forever changed their lives.
Over the course of one short weekend, they will ask of the living and the dead: “Can love truly rewrite the past?”
The Best of Me was a book that I just couldn’t put down. Had I of been able to stay awake, I most likely would have read it in one sitting.
One thing for sure, Nicholas Sparks never disappoints and you know when you pick up one of his novels you’re getting the very best.