The Longest Ride by Nicholas Sparks

Like most women of my age, I’ve happily cried my way through plenty of Nicholas Sparks books. Reading The Notebook took me to the gulping, hiccuping stage just before you actually sob, and don’t even talk to me about movie version. I left the cinema looking as if I had been to a funeral, completely wrung out with crying.

I stayed up later than I should have on a week night to finish The Longest Ride, but even though I yawned all of the next day, I wanted more from the book. Regardless,  I expect it will make a fantastic movie. (Anyone in Hollywood, are you listening?) I’d love to see that gorgeous guy from the tv show Supernatural play Luke, the young cowboy hero of this story.

The Longest Ride tells the story of two couples, Sophia and Luke, whose romance blossoms in the book and Ira and Ruth, who were married and loved each other for many years.

I’ve been sitting here as I write trying to think what it was about the book that left me feeling dissatisfied and have come up with three things.

1/ Sophia, the heroine, is 21. Maybe I’m getting too old (I’m in my mid forties) to give a rat’s tail about a 21 year old’s romances.

2/ Sophia is a university student studying art. Luke is a cowboy who rides bulls in rodeos. Their relationship blossoms as the book goes on and it was nice (by nice I actually mean sweet, but boring), but my feeling was, they were happy together now, but would they still be a couple in twenty years? What do they have in common? I just don’t see this one lasting.

3/ Ira and Ruth lived a full life (Ira is 91) filled with joys and happiness and sorrows, and I think if a bit more of the book had been about them (say a 60/40 split between the older and the younger couple) I would have enjoyed it more. Probably a younger reader would disagree, but hey, this is my review.

You won’t need tissues to get through The Longest Ride, but it is still an enjoyable read. I can’t wait to see the movie, that guy from Supernatural is going to look really good in a cowboy hat.

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