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Memories Paperback – April 23, 2012
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"It's one of the best stories you will ever read." - Ruty, Book Blogger
"Very well written and engaging. A very heart-warming and emotional book." - Billie Copas
From the Author
I want to thank all the readers who have read Memories, and I hope you enjoyed reading it as much as I did writing it. If you enjoyed this story, you may want to try my latest novel, Sara's Promise, another heartfelt romance.
- Item Weight : 11.5 ounces
- Paperback : 254 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1475238339
- ISBN-13 : 978-1475238334
- Dimensions : 5.5 x 0.64 x 8.5 inches
- Publisher : CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (April 23, 2012)
- Language: : English
- Best Sellers Rank: #1,778,885 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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This book leads us throught the path of two people destined to find themselves more than once during their lives. A story that show us how every decision we make affects us and others, and determined who we are.
The book presents us to Danielle and Michael (or Miguel) in a moment of their lifes when they think they have grown up, and that the past is just a memory. But when they met again all the past resurges and we discovered what happened eighteen years ago. Then, during the course of the months we see the comes and goes of their relationship. And like everything in lifes, it doesn't come easy.
A man who is a Veteran of Vietnam and a girl who helps him faces his demons, a girl that was the only woman capable of truly understanding him.
Deanna has the great ability of describe characters with such deepness that you really feel you know them. You cry and laugh along them, and feel everything they face. Every dialogue, every scene is described in an excellent way! She really know how to make a girl cry.
I'll be the first to say that this one is far more dark and brooding than any of her other novels that I've read. There was a lot about the pain and anguish of events and loves of the past, with much thought and 'what if' in the thinking. Too much of the novel was dedicated to explaining the anger and pain of the past, and not enough of the 'happy ever after'.
But all that being said, there's no way I'm giving up on Deanna Lynn Sletten. She's a marvelous storyteller and a great woodsmith. If she wrote it, I know it's going to be good ...and probably it's going to be great.
If you decide not to get this novel, then read her novel "Summer of the Loon" (or something like that ...you'll love it).
This story dealt not only with the passionate, romantic love shared by Dani and Michael (Miguel); it also dealt with family love which was exemplified in Michael's and Dani's love for his daughter, Vanessa and his granddaughter, Michelle. In addition, one of the issues dealt with in this book was the love between friends which is shown most strongly when Michael and Dani visit The Wall in Washington, D.C. to honor his best friend who was killed in Vietnam right in front of him.
All the characters, both major and minor, had multi-faceted and well-developed personalities and the dialogues were authentic and enjoyable to read (especially the banter between Dani and Miguel). The imagery was graphic and realistic; I really felt immersed in the story.
Overall, I think this was a wonderful reading experience and I definitely recommend it.
Danielle "Dani" Westerly was only eighteen years old when she met and fell in love with twenty-five year old Vietnam Vet Miguel "Michael" DeCara, a single father with a six year old daughter named Vanessa. Miguel had come home from a traumatizing tour in Vietnam to a wife who couldn't deal with his nightmares and didn't want to be a wife or mother any longer. Addicted to women, Miguel went from one woman to another until he meets Dani, who was spending the summer before starting college as a waitress in a California coffee shop. Dani was able to soothe his fears by holding him in her arms until he calmed down. They had a loving relationship for a few months until a sudden event occurred in his life and without saying a word, he left Dani behind. Dani's heart was broken and filled with hatred for a man who took her youth away, and she blamed him for a fatal decision that would change her future.
Nineteen years later a chance meeting in Chicago brings Dani and Michael together again. Dani is a retail clothing merchandise buyer for a large Minneapolis department store. Michael is the owner of a family coat manufacturing business, Regal Coats, with divisions in Chicago and New York. Electricity sparks between them, but Dani's hardened heart leaves Michael confused and wondering what he did to make her despise him so much.
A trail of memories will send Dani and Michael on a journey to reignite a lost love, seek forgiveness and redemption, and provide them a second chance at love.
Memories is a poignant tale of love found, love lost, and second chances that will captivate your heart and soul. The author weaves a beautiful and dramatic tale written in the third person narrative with alternating perspectives on Dani and Michael's love story.
The story opens up with Dani at Michael's funeral, then flashes back to the beginning of their relationship, leading up to their chance meeting nineteen years later and how their relationship was renewed. This touching love story takes the reader along on Dani and Michael's emotional memory woven journey, it will draw you into their lives and will pull at your heartstrings. The story is rich in detail and descriptions of the retail merchandising business and the various settings, the author easily transports the reader to California, Minneapolis, Chicago and New York. The author's descriptive writing style is phenomenal, she simply captivates your imagination and engages you to come along on the emotional roller coaster ride that is Dani and Michael's love story.
The author has created an intriguing cast of characters who are realistic and complex people that the reader can relate to. Their engaging personalities grab a hold of you with dialogues and interactions that leap off the pages. The emotions and passion between Dani and Michael are palpable, you can't help but feel for them as they deal with their past demons and relationship issues. Dani's revelation of why she despised Michael and Michael's Vietnam nightmares that still haunt him was simply heart wrenching, author Deanna Lynn Sletten sure knows how to draw out the emotions from her readers! The supporting cast of characters: Catherine and Vanessa are both wonderful additions to the storyline as their lives are intricately interwoven with Dani and Michael. This emotionally charged story is one that everyone who believes in love should read, it is a powerfully compelling story that will leave you satisfied, I could easily see this novel becoming a movie.
Memories is a beautiful story of a couple's journey to rekindle a lost love through old memories and a painful past brought to the surface and healed through the power of communication, compassion, forgiveness and redemption. This love story is one for the ages, it will resonate with you long after the last word has been read.
Disclaimer: I received a copy of the book from the author in exchange for my honest review and participation in a virtual book tour event hosted by Chick Lit Plus Blog Tours.
Top reviews from other countries
This is the story of Dani and Miguel/Michael. They had a relationship when she was young and then went their separate ways and this is about how they find each other again. The oscillation of Dani’s feelings, she hates him, she loves him, then she hates him again seems a little over done. Perhaps that says something about me, the fact that I want to shake her and say make up your mind one way or the other.
Dani took care of Vanessa Michael’s child in the early days and when Vanessa is involved in an accident I find it really difficult to accept that he does not contact Dani to let her know. There is a brief explanation that he does not want to be the bearer of bad news, but I think this should have been developed a little further and it may have felt more real.
The idea that Michael is a troubled Vietnam Vet is one of the most interesting parts of the book. Psychologically the fact that they isolate themselves, pushing away the people that often mean the most is something that could have been developed further with Michael’s inner monologue. The idea of going to the memorial or back to Vietnam to being closure is also a great idea, but seems to be very brief in the book.
Perhaps it is because we are dealing with Dani’s memories rather than Michael’s, but he is the far more interesting character, even though both are not fully developed. We only see both their parents in part and we do not get any real perspective on their relationship with them. How did Michael feel about taking over the business? If he pushes everyone away, did he spend more time at the office? Does he have any hobbies/interests outside of work, or is he driven only by work? How has Dani’s career progressed? Did she go on to further education after breaking up with Michael? Was her current job her only job? What has her career been like? Past boyfriends, hobbies, what does she do apart from work?
This book is pleasant, but not really very exciting or different.
Starting the book with Michael's funeral is unusual, but it neatly takes us away from the usual 'Will they, won't they get together?' question and brings us to the more interesting issue of 'How do they get together?' The carefully crafted revelations regarding Dani and Michael's past relationship develop the plot further. But this skilful plotting would mean very little unless we care for the characters, and the author ensures that we do. I love how we get to know Dani and Michael as their young and older selves, and so we feel invested in their relationship. Having got under the skin of these two sympathetic characters we come to understand the reasons behind their decisions. However, there is one choice that Michael makes which I do have a problem with, but to specify it here would be a spoiler.
This is a moving and romantic story with many episodes that tug at the heartstrings. Their visit to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall had me in tears. The depth of Dani's hurt, the touching (eventual) reunion between Dani and Michael, the tender family scenes with Vanessa, and later Vanessa's daughter, are described with genuine emotion. The popular cultural references to things such as The Eagles' 'Hotel California' and the film 'Casablanca' work well to fully engage our feelings.
Definitely a book to enjoy wrapped up in a duvet with a box of chocs beside you.