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Sam's Letters to Jennifer Hardcover – June 28, 2004

4.0 out of 5 stars 418 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Unlike Patterson's Alex Cross thrillers, this sentimental tale does not translate well to audio. The plot twists seem all the more absurd when read aloud, and the audiobook's maudlin music, inserted during the story's poignant moments, is as distracting and disturbing as a TV laugh track. Jennifer, a newspaper columnist who's grieving the death of her husband, has more reason to mourn when her beloved grandmother, Sam, falls into a coma. Jennifer rushes to Sam's home in Lake Geneva, Wis., where she finds a packet of letters addressed to her. The letters detail her grandmother's life story, including an affair she had with a mysterious man. Jennifer takes comfort in the letters, and at the same time, embarks on her own romance with Brendan, an old friend. Heche's thin, mousy voice is perfect for the perpetually worried Jennifer, but she rarely varies her intonation, not even for Brendan's dialogue. Alexander does a better job as Sam, conveying the elderly woman's concern for Jennifer, but her performance isn't sufficient to elevate this flawed audiobook.
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

After the success of Suzanne's Diary for Nicholas (2001), it should surprise no one that Patterson is trying his hand at another romantic tale, and this one is every bit as enjoyable as its predecessor. Jennifer, a Chicago Tribune columnist who's still mourning the death of her beloved husband, Danny, is jolted out of her lonely life when she receives news that her grandmother, Sam, has taken a fall and is now in a coma. Racing up to Lake Geneva to be by her grandmother's bedside, Jennifer discovers a packet of letters at Sam's house, which are addressed to her. They are from Sam; in them, Sam tells Jennifer that her husband was not the great love of her life. Instead, Sam was swept off her feet by a man she calls "Doc," whom she still loves to this day. As Jennifer learns some shocking secrets about her grandmother, she finds herself falling under the spell of a handsome neighbor, Brendan. Jennifer is surprised to find she is able to love again after Danny, but just when you think Jennifer's life can't be touched by any more tragedy, she learns a sad secret about Brendan. Patterson is infamous for surprising his readers, though, and the ending to this novel is unexpected, touching, and satisfying. Another winner from Patterson, sure to draw the same audience as Suzanne's Diary. Kristine Huntley
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

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Product Details

  • Series: Patterson, James
  • Hardcover: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Little, Brown and Company; First Edition edition (June 28, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316710571
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316710572
  • Product Dimensions: 5.8 x 1 x 8.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (418 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,072,211 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
It still amazes me that the James Patterson can write such graphic stories as the Alex Cross series and also romance stories. I have read all of his books and couldn't put them down. "Suzanne's Diary for Nicholas" was the first book to make me cry in years. Because of this I was excited to read this book. "Sam's Letters to Jennifer" is a great book, but it was predictable. If you like romantic quick reads than this is the book for you. All of Pattersons books are fast paced and hard to put down. A word of caution however to those who haven't read any of his other stuff and want to now.
His other books like the Alex Cross series are very graphic and gory detailed. I enjoyed them, but they are totally different than his romance novels.
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Format: Hardcover
A co-worker loaned me this book. I thoroughly enjoyed it for what it is . . . a romantic tear jerker, with all that the genre entails. Laughter. Tears. Tragic hero and wounded heroine. Wise role model with secrets of her own. Love lost. Love found. Love almost lost again, due to tragic circumstances.

This book is, at its core, the love story between a girl and her wonderfully brave grandmother.

Well worth a night's read.

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Format: Hardcover
I found this "novel" to be one of the poorest I have read to date. The characters are not developed, the story line was weak and it lacked imagination. It seemed as if Mr. Patterson stopped by a bar one night and jotted it down on a napkin! It should have been labeled as no more than a short story.

I believe the last time I read a book with such a large font, two inch margin on all four sides and less than 200 words per page ---- I was in the third grade!! New chapters were used as a way of extending the story/number of pages --- they were not used as a means to express a new idea or thought.

Take my advice -- do not waste your time or money.
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Format: Hardcover
Jennifer is a young woman desperately trying to put the pieces of her life back together after being struck by two tragedies, but news of her grandmother being ill will force her to push her own problems aside and turn her attention to the one person that has always been there for her...her grandmother Sam (short for Samantha.)
Jennifer returns to her childhood home and in the house she finds letters written by her grandmother, letters that tell a mysterious love story of two people, one of those people being Sam, the other a man named `Doc.' Intrigued by these letters, Jennifer continues to read, only to find out that her grandmother was in love a someone other than her grandfather.
After deciding to remain on Lake Geneva while her grandmother lies in a coma, Jennifer runs into Brandon, a childhood friend, sparking a passion she hasn't felt in a long time. But, this new found love comes with a high price as Jennifer learns Brandon has a secret that may destroy their love.
`Sam's Letters to Jennifer' is a moving and sad love story. As with any James Patterson novel the writing is first-rate and the pace is super-fast. The intertwining of two separate love stories will keep readers turning the pages until they reach the surprising and sad ending. This powerful novel, that is similar to the novels of Nicholas Sparks, should be a huge beach book.
Major thriller writer James Patterson has written a love story...not once, but twice (Suzanne's Diary for Nicholas) and he does it with style to spare. Patterson's new novel, while a bit sappy in spots, does contain all the trademark plot twists that he is famous for, including an ending you'll never see coming.

Expect this quick summer read to fly up the bestseller lists!
Nick Gonnella
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Format: Hardcover
This was a case of being seduced by the title and cover only to be horribly disappointed by the content. Even now I can't believe how bad this book was. Reading the prologue, I found myself wondering if he'd just put no effort into writing that particular part at all- it was that bad. I had high hopes for this book-a bestselling author, fabulous title and it's a love story. But the writing, not to mention the plot, is very very bad-rough, childlike, and has the stamp of an amateur all over it. The language is so simplistic and collooquial that it's full of such gems of literary phrase as "Now that I please myself, my priorities are better" or "I was so happy, and I remember every moment of that night in Lake Geneva" and "Because less than three weeks later, something really terrible happened". Slang is used instead of expression-words such as "totally" and "really nice" abound, and overall it's just a horrible book. The dialogue between the lovers is trite and unbelievable, and so is the pacing and plot events of the book. I skimmed through the whole book to make sure that the prologue wasn't a fluke-that the whole book continued in the same vein. It did-and just half-skimming/half-reading I was bored. The main character apparently has the mind of teenager, or at least that means of expression. Completely lacking in elegance, polish, talent, or believability, this is similar in style and content to Nicholas Spark's books, but unlike his books displays no maturity whatsoever-Nicholas Spark at least has some writing ability. It's a shame, because about the only thing the book has going for it is that the overall plot and characters do have a lot of potential-it's just completely unrealized.
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