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Three Weeks with My Brother Paperback – January 3, 2006

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

When bestselling author Sparks (The Notebook; Message in a Bottle; etc.) receives a brochure offering a three-week trip around the world, it's not hard for him to persuade Micah, his older brother, to join him in touring Guatemala's Mayan ruins, Peru's Incan temples, Easter Island, the killing fields in Cambodia, the Taj Mahal and Ethiopian rock cathedrals. His account of the trip is refreshingly honest and perceptive. At each stop, the brothers, both deeply committed to their families, cover the crucial moments in a life full of familial love and tragedy: Nick's role as the middle child always feeling left out; his marriage in 1989; the loss of Nick and Micah's mother two months later after a horseback riding accident; the death of Nick's first baby and the physical problems of his second son; the death of their father in a car accident; and the passing of their younger sister from a brain tumor. As the brothers travel together through these mythical sites and share candid thoughts, they find themselves stunned by fate's turns, realizing that a peaceful moment may be shattered at any time. Weaving in vignettes of tenderness and loss with travelogue-like observations, Sparks's account shows how he and his brother both evolved on this voyage. "Somehow there was a chance we could help each other, and in that way, I began to think of the trip less as a journey around the world than a journey to rediscover who I was and how I'? developed the way I did."
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Booklist

Who wouldn't want to go on a trip around the world? When best-selling novelist Sparks receives a travel brochure from his alma mater, Notre Dame, he thinks, "If not now, then when?" and asks his brother to join him. They both have family obligations, but this sounds like the trip of a lifetime, and as the reader soon finds out, they both need to relax. As they journey to faraway places, the brothers reminisce about their unusual childhood. Instead of the idealistic life readers may imagine, their early years were marked by poverty, although redeemed by their mother's great love. Their father was a graduate student working several jobs to support the family, and the boys, best friends as well as brothers, led an independent life filled with adventure, derring-do, and responsibilities beyond their years. This is a rare opportunity for readers to get to know a favorite author as Nicholas reveals the inspirations for his fiction. A must-read for Sparks fans as well as a treat for those who want to find out what makes a family strong. Patty Engelmann
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: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Grand Central Publishing; Reprint edition (January 3, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0446694851
  • ISBN-13: 978-0446694858
  • Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 1 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (803 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #26,208 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

132 of 145 people found the following review helpful By JJ Stark VINE VOICE on May 26, 2004
Format: Hardcover
To begin with, I have to say that Nicholas Sparks is my absolute favorite author. I am usually one of the first in line to purchase his books on the day of their release. I go home and "gobble" it up as fast as I can, then am disappointed for the other 364 days of the year until his next novel is released. I've always wished he would release more than one novel in a one year period, and was thrilled when he began releasing twice a year. Sadly, this is the last year for that, and next year I will go on yearning for a Nicholas Sparks book for a little more than 11 months of the year!
That said, after reading his memoir, I can now understand why he only publishes only once a year, and appreciate his work that much more. His family comes first, and although he loves to write and is honored by his readers' attention & devotion, he simply does not want to spend any less time with his family than he absolutely must. In order to fulfill this need, we as readers must savor the books we are given, and anxiously await his next delicious read.
I was deeply touched by the relationship Nicholas has with his brother. Being the only surviving members of the Sparks family, they have a deep bond, and their admiration and love for one another is obvious in the words on the pages, and even in the smallest of photos in the book. It most certainly deserves the attention this book calls to it, and I can only imagine that some of the readers whose views are printed here must be envious of this bond, lacking the love & support of their families, which the Sparks brothers so deeply cherish.
If you know anything about Nicholas Sparks and read the book's jacket, you must certainly know that this is NOT a travel book!
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28 of 29 people found the following review helpful By George on December 19, 2004
Format: Audio CD
This is one of the most wonderful, inspirational, and moving books that I have read. At first, I didn't realize that the authors were Nicholas Sparks, author of The Notebook and Message In A Bottle, among other best selling books, and his brother. I hope this doesn't give anything away except that I am kinda dumb when it comes to remembering authors and titles. The book is really an autobiography covering Nick and his entire family. He covers their many trials and tribulations and still manages to see the good that came out of what for me and others, I suppose, would be absolutely devastating and horrible things to happen. The descriptions of his family members, especially his wife, are outstanding and again food for thought and inspiration. We see how ordinary people can be extraordinary when you know them better.

I listened to this book on CD while driving alone to and from Florida and in a pretty deep depression not being helped much by medications. The CD was really selected because of the travel theme. I love individual travelogues that have a literary and philosophical point of view and have visions of writing something similar myself.

While Three Weeks With My Brother could easily be depressing to some, especially like me, suffering from severe depression and still grieving for a loved one, I found it to be both sad and uplifting as Nick and his brother talked out their life, including the ups and downs. They spoke from the vantage point of both being on what anyone would say is a material up, but they carried with them memories of severe tragedies in their lives, mostly brought about through their unusually strong family ties and love.
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28 of 30 people found the following review helpful By Tom Hennigan on March 28, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Like the other reviewer, I picked the book up on a whim at the airport. It was an easy read but also an emotional one. Mr. Sparks talks about the importance of balance in one's life - Between family, work, friends etc. And that if one becomes all encompassing, then your life becomes out of sync and out of balance. He also talks about the importance of family, and as he discusses the loss of his parents and sister, it reminded me that although my wife and kids are the focal point of my life, that I've been letting the relationship with my siblings pass me by, and that you never know when they will be taken away, and then it's too late.

A very good book with a simple but yet also complex point.
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Eric Wilson on November 26, 2004
Format: Hardcover
Nicholas Sparks made a million dollars off his first novel, "The Notebook." His books have been made into movies. Some might say he lives the charmed life. So why should we care that he got to travel around the world with his brother? Who wants to read about spoiled rich people and their international trots?

This book will convince you to look at others through a new set of glasses. Not only does "Nicky" reveal the wonders and shortfalls of cultures from Cambodia to Easter Island to Norway, he also shows us the heartbreak of his own family. Without revealing all, let me say that he tells a readable tale of his own childhood, spliced in with scenes of his three week journey with his brother. At times, the story is laugh-out loud funny; at others, it is sobering and poignant.

Yes, I may have harbored a bit of envy for Mr. Sparks' "charmed life." Now I harbor feelings of admiration, compassion, and brotherhood. Thank you, Nick, for opening your heart and your life to encourage those of us traveling the same path.
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