Two by Two is the latest release from renown international best selling author – Nicolas Sparks.
Prior to reading this book, I was a Nicholas Sparks virgin. With the many best selling romance novels that he has written, I would have thought that I would have read at least one of his books, but no. I have however watched many times his blockbuster movie adaptation of his book “The Notebook”, which I’m sure many of you have seen (husbands/boyfriends endured!) He has also had blockbuster movies with 11 of his novels. Others including The Longest Ride, Nights in Rodanthe and the one where Miley Cyrus and Hunky Hemsworth hooked up- The Last Song.
This man clearly knows his romance.
The very first thing that struck me about this book, is that the main character is a bloke and that it is written from his point of view. I immediately thought “what would a bloke now about romance?!” I mean, realistically there aren’t too many romantic blokes around are there? I was intrigued at how the book was going to unfold with this as the setting, written from the perspective of a male, husband, brother and father.
The main character is Russell or Russ which he is known; he is a romantic, gentle soul that just wants to please everyone. He thinks he has it all, the perfect wife, daughter, life. He knows all the romantic gestures, does anything and everything for his wife, parents, sister and daughter, sweet London.
But he is also a business man, and when he is forced to set up his own business, his wife isn’t so happy and that is when the marriage and his life as he knows it, starts to breaks apart.
The wife, Vivian is a piece of work and doesn’t take the change very well and goes off and gets herself a job (and new man), leaving Russ with the care of London, their 4 year old daughter. Then there is Emily, an old flame that by chance he runs into in a coffee shop (very cliche), who’s son is best friends with London. There will be no spoilers today!
The ensuing chapters touch on the following life events:
- Stay at home dad
- Single parenting
- Setting up a new business
- being a taxi for children activities
- relationships with parents
- relationships with siblings
- gay relationships & IVS
- rekindling an old relationships
- family traditions
- separation, divorce and how it effects the family unit
- cancer, death and the effect it has on immediate family
- How small children deal with these life events
- finding happiness after immense turmoil and sadness and heartbreak
I’m happy to admit that I cried when I read some parts of this book. Where situations were a bit close to home. Where words were so beautifully written about scenarios that I have been in. I also laughed, and there are many feelgood moments and important messages and lessons in the book as well.
It’s a big book of 482 pages; but I found myself totally immersed in the story. During the day my mind would wander to the book and I would ponder what direction Russ’s life would take. I found myself reading it far too late into the night, wanting to find out more. These are all good indications to me that it was a great book and one that I would highly recommend.