GUEST REVIEW: Sam’s Letters to Jennifer

Sam’s Letters to Jennifer by James Patterson – reviewed by Nic

Sam’s Letters to Jennifer by James Patterson was published in 2004 in the U.S.. It is currently available in paperback, audio and eBook formats online at Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

Published by Grand Central Publishing, the paperback edition is 272 pages.

Goodreads description:

Laced with mystery, Sam’s Letters To Jennifer combines two unforgettable love stories in a novel that’s absolutely impossible to put down.

Jennifer returns to the resort village where she grew up to help a beloved relative–and ends up experiencing not one but two of the most amazing love stories she’s ever known.

The first is completely unexpected. In a series of letters that Jennifer finds, her relative reveals that she has concealed a huge secret for decades: Her great love is not the man she was married to for all those years. As Jennifer reads about this passionate partnership, she learns more about love’s imperatives and secrets than she ever dreamed possible.

And then comes the biggest surprise of all. At a time when she thought she could never love again, Jennifer lets her guard down for a moment–and is suddenly caught up in the greatest flight of exhilaration she’s ever known. But, just as suddenly, she learns that this new love comes with an unbearable cost. Jennifer doesn’t think she can survive the pain–but the letters she’s been reading make her think that love may help her find a way.

I’ve never read James Patterson, but I know of his Alex Cross thriller books and didn’t know how he’d transition into romance. (Nicholas Sparks is the king of this genre.) But it felt like it might be a tearjerker, so I picked this one out of my bookcase. Based on the name I thought this would be romantic letters from some guy named Sam to some girl named Jennifer. I was half right.

Sam is Jennifer’s grandmother and best friend. Jennifer comes up to stay in Sam’s lakefront house because Sam is in a bad state in the hospital. As she goes to her room (the room she’s stayed in since childhood), she finds it occupied with tons of letters, all addressed to her. It’s in these letters that Sam tells Jennifer about her life, and some of her deepest secrets.

While staying in her house, she gets re-acquainted with Brendan, and as their stories unfold, so do those of Grandma Sam.

It’s a beautiful, touching story addressing life and how we should and do choose to live it.

“Live every day from the crack of dawn until I can’t keep my eyes open a second longer.”

Whether you choose to live by this mantra or not – you should choose to read this book.

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