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Nights in Rodanthe Paperback – July 1, 2003

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Sparks (A Bend in the Road, etc.) logs more miles on the winding high road of romance with the story of two middle-aged people who meet by chance in the small North Carolina coastal town of Rodanthe. The impassioned but doomed romance seems to owe much to Robert James Waller's The Bridges of Madison County. Once again, a housewife who has focused on everyone but herself indulges in a brief, intense, secret affair with a stranger who changes her life forever. As the story begins, Adrienne Willis is 60, the divorced mother of three grown children. To help her troubled daughter cope with the untimely recent death of her husband, Adrienne tells her the tale of her love affair, which took place 15 years before. At the time, Adrienne was an uptight matron whose ex-husband had just left her for a younger woman. This rejection colors her entire life, and Sparks realistically portrays a vulnerable and isolated woman who throws herself into raising her children to escape her despair. Paul Flanner, her paramour, is a surgeon and an obsessive workaholic with no genuine connection to his wife or son, whose world completely falls apart when one of his patients inexplicably dies. Sparks builds a taut, plausible relationship between his protagonists, but even fans may be irked by the obviousness of their story and the inevitability of their fate.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Booklist

Sparks, popular author of several romantically themed best-sellers, including Message in a Bottle (1998), is back at it with his latest mix of love story and pathos. He doesn't disappoint, whipping up plenty of melodrama in the story of two shattered people, both badly scarred by past experiences, who find each other late in life and realize they are soul mates. Adrienne Willis is a 45-year-old mother of three whose husband recently abandoned her for a younger woman. When she visits the small coastal town of Rodanthe, North Carolina, seeking a bit of respite from her problems, she meets Paul Flanner, a 54-year-old doctor who has sold his thriving medical practice and come to Rodanthe to escape his own tortured past. Despite their short courtship, the two find themselves falling madly and passionately in love and vow to spend their lives together. Unfortunately, Paul needs to make amends with the son he has long neglected and so embarks on an ill-fated trip, which leads to heartbreak. Sparks has a very solid fan base, and they will be clamoring for his latest. Kathleen Hughes
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Warner Books; 1st Thus. edition (July 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0446691798
  • ISBN-13: 978-0446691796
  • Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.6 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (570 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,053,964 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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More About the Author

Nicholas Sparks is one of the world's most beloved storytellers. All of his books have been New York Times bestsellers, with over 100 million copies sold worldwide, in more than 50 languages, including over 65 million copies in the United States alone.

Sparks wrote one of his best-known stories, The Notebook, over a period of six months at age 28. It was published in 1996 by Warner Books. He followed with the novels Message in a Bottle (1998), A Walk to Remember (1999), The Rescue (2000), A Bend in the Road (2001), Nights in Rodanthe (2002), The Guardian (2003), The Wedding (2003), True Believer (2005) and its sequel, At First Sight (2005), Dear John (2006), The Choice (2007), The Lucky One (2008), The Last Song (2009), Safe Haven (2010), The Best of Me (2011), and The Longest Ride (2013), as well as the 2004 non-fiction memoir Three Weeks With My Brother, co-written with his brother Micah. His eighteenth novel, See Me, will be published on October 13, 2015.

The Choice, Sparks's eleventh film adaptation and on which he served as a Producer, will open on February 5, 2016. Including this year's The Longest Ride, along with The Best of Me, Safe Haven, The Lucky One, Message in a Bottle, A Walk to Remember, The Notebook, Nights in Rodanthe, Dear John and The Last Song, adaptations of Nicholas Sparks novels have a cumulative worldwide gross of over three-quarters of a billion dollars.

In 2012, Sparks and his publishing agent and creative partner Theresa Park, launched Nicholas Sparks Productions, with Park as President of Production. A film adaptation of The Choice, which Lionsgate will release in February, is the first independent feature from NSP. It stars Benjamin Walker and Teresa Palmer, and is directed by Ross Katz, with a screenplay adaptation by Bryan Sipe. Sparks and Theresa Park partnered with Peter Safran to produce and finance the film. A film version of The Guardian is also in development, as is a film based on football hall of famer Gayle Sayers's life and memoir.

Not only a film, but also a television production company, NSP currently have an overall deal with Warner Brothers Television and is developing a new slate of projects including a musical series, several comedies, a dark family cable drama, and a Young Adult book series for ABC Family. Most recently, the CW Network announced that it is developing a series based on Sparks's bestselling 1996 novel (and the 2004 New Line sleeper hit film) The Notebook. The project is a Nicholas Sparks Productions in association with Warner Bros. Television. Sparks will serve as an executive producer on the project along with Theresa Park. Todd Graff is the writer and executive producer.

Sparks lives in North Carolina. He contributes to a variety of local and national charities, and is a major contributor to the Creative Writing Program (MFA) at the University of Notre Dame, where he provides scholarships, internships, and a fellowship annually. He co-founded The Epiphany School in New Bern, North Carolina in 2006. As a former full scholarship athlete (he still holds a track and field record at the University of Notre Dame) he also spent four years coaching track and field athletes at the local public high school. In 2009, the team he coached at New Bern High School set a World Junior Indoor Record in the 4 x400 meter, in New York. The record still stands. Click to watch the Runner's World video with Nicholas.

The Nicholas Sparks Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit committed to improving cultural and international understanding through global education experiences for students of all ages was launched in 2011. Between the foundation, and the personal gifts of the Sparks family, more than $15 million dollars have been distributed to deserving charities, scholarship programs, and projects. Because the Sparks family covers all operational expenses of the foundation, 100% of donations are devoted to programs.

Find out more about the authors and his works by visiting

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

44 of 45 people found the following review helpful By Tucker Andersen VINE VOICE on October 24, 2002
Format: Hardcover
At age sixty, Adrienne Willis is faced with the fact that her daughter Amanda has been unable to regain her emotional equilibrium after her husband died of cancer. Adrienne becomes increasingly worried about the impact on Amanda's two young sons. Amanda rejects her mother's attempts to lend support, since she believes that her divorced mother does not "know what it is like to live through something like " the death of a loved one. Adrienne decides that Amanda needs to learn about a part of her mother's life that has been kept secret from her family, and as she reviews the items she has saved from her NIGHTS IN RODANTHE and as she rereads the letter from Paul (Flanner), by the end of the first chapter not only has the complete plot been revealed but we guess the conclusion in a general way.
Thus, the attraction of this story is its simplicity and spareness as the author gives us enough details to fulfill our curiosity but makes no attempt to embellish it beyond the necessary minimum. In a flashback to fifteen years ago, Adrienne agees to watch a coastal inn for a friend who has to attend a wedding. Because it is past the tourist season and a hurricane is forecast, Paul Flanner (a very successful surgeon who has just sold his practice to go to Ecuador to be with his son) is the only guest. They are both attempting to recover from failed marriages, and their few brief nights together become a life changing experience for each of them. This is the eternal story of our search to instill meaning into our lives, and the question of what constitutes real love.
I have read none of Nicholas Sparks' other books or THE BRIDGES OF MADISON COUNTY, but did see the movie MEASSAGE IN A BOTTLE.
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47 of 51 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 18, 2002
Format: Hardcover
I just finished reading Nicholas Sparks latest creation "Nights in Rodanthe". Let me tell do not walk to the store to purchase this one. I have read every single one of Sparks novels thus far. He writes like no other. His imagery is you are reading it is like a movie unfolding before your eyes. I will not outline the story for you here because I think that ruins it for the reader. Expect to cry (as usual). But expect to learn something and also to reflect on your own life as well. I think that is what I love most about Sparks is that everything is "real". You can relate by having experienced similar things or by knowing someone who has. I just wish he could write faster because as soon as one of his novels is released, I read it the same day...and then am stuck waiting, craving for the next one. I also highly recommend Message in a Bottle and The Rescue.
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26 of 30 people found the following review helpful By Antoinette Klein on October 8, 2002
Format: Hardcover
As a fan of Nicholas Sparks who reads all his work, I am amazed at how predictable and unappealing his latest novel is. I can't overlook the fact that the plot is a virtual copy of THE BRIDGES OF MADISON COUNTY, that the ending is evident within the first few pages, or that the characters fail to ignite any sympathy but remain cardboard cut-outs from first page to last.
I give him credit for attempting to write a passionate middle-aged love story, but must he rely on such hackneyed stereotypes as the lonely, desserted wife and the workaholic man who never stopped to smell the roses? And while it is true that people can change at any age, the transformation of Paul Flanner just doesn't ring true.
Sparks has not forgotten how to write a tear-jerker, however, and this one will leave you at least misty or most likely crying a bucketful of tears. But this is Nicholas Sparks, so you didn't really expect "happily ever after," did you?
However, the most insulting thing about this book to me was the premise that two nights of good talk and good sex can change your life forever and make you wiser, happier, and more together than you could possibly imagine no matter what else happens to you. Whatever happened to building a relationship on trust, friendship, respect, and passion?
Readers have gotten much better from Nicholas Sparks in the past and will, hopefully, do so in the future.
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20 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Ratmammy VINE VOICE on November 16, 2002
Format: Hardcover
NIGHTS IN RODANTHE by Nicholas Sparks
Another love story by the author of MESSAGE IN A BOTTLE and other tragedy-laden romances, NIGHTS IN RODANTHE recalls an older woman's memories of a love lost, but not forgotten.
Adrienne Willis is 60 years old and is trying to help her daughter Amanda deal with the recent death of her young husband. Amanda does not seem to be able to cope with the death, ignoring her young children's needs and falling apart before them all. Adrienne decides to tell Amanda the story of a man she loved many years ago, but due to circumstances that kept them apart, they did not have a "happily ever after". She hopes that this story will help Amanda with her own loss.
Fourteen years ago, three years after Adrienne's husband Jack had left her for another woman, Adrienne honors a request to help take care of a friend's Bed and Breakfast Inn while her friend goes away on vacation. Adrienne has yet to move on with her life since the divorce, and time spent at the Inn may be what Adrienne needs. There is only one guest that weekend, and it is Paul Flanner, a surgeon who is going through his own nightmare of a past, and happens to stay at the Inn while he conducts some business in town.
Adrienne and Paul connect and as they get to know each other, they fall in love. Paul, however, has already committed to spending time in South America and be with his son, who also happened to be a doctor. He tells Adrienne that as soon as his work is done there, he will come back for her and they would have plenty of time to be together.
Obviously, things did not work out for Adrienne and Paul, since Adrienne was sitting in her kitchen with her recently widowed daughter.
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