Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Sweet Tea and The Last Song

I am very bad at finishing books. Extremely bad! So bad that I have often returned library books after renewing them twice and still haven't finished.

Well, that was not going to happen yesterday. I realized last Thursday that my current library book , The Last Song, was due Tuesday. Normally I would be fine as I had the entire long weekend, but with my trip, I knew I would be cutting it close.

So, when Jay got up early to go workout I got up and began to read. I think the most remarkable thing is I read for a good 45 minutes and still made it to work on time, even a little early.

After work, I cam home and made my self some sweet tea because I felt it fit with the books setting and I secretly missed it. The Last Song takes place in Wilmington, NC near the Outer Banks. Due to my southern college experience, I figured before finishing I needed to set the mood with a little treat.

Now my northern roots prevented true sweet tea, but here is what I did.

I used my current favorite Celestial Herbal Tea, Sweet Apple Chamomile. I boiled 1 1/2 cup of water in the microwave (3 minutes) so that it would be extra hot. I let the 2 tea bags steep for about 20 minutes and then poured it over a glass of ice and added a little bit of sugar.

Now that I had a sweet snack I was read to delve into the last 100 pages.

WARNING: Potential Spoiler Alert below

Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed The Last Song. When I decided to read it, all I knew was that they made a movie and that Miley Cyrus was starring in it with Kelly Preston and Greg Kinnear. From the previews I could tell that the movie was about the relationship of a father with his two children, in particular his daughter Ronnie, as well as a love story. I will try and not give too much away, but I did warn you, so please do not be mad as I will spoil an aspect of the book.

Essentially, Ronnie and her brother Jonah stay with their father, Steve, for the Summer because he had less contact with them since the divorce with his wife. The dynamics of the father with his two children and how they all grew together over the summer was touching. And, not to anyone's surprise the book had its moments. I mean come on it is Nicholas Sparks novel. But, overall, I really did enjoyed it. And, I am very excited to one day watch the movie!

The book resonated with me due to the relationship between Ronnie and Steve. Now, I love my father, but there were definitely times when I was a teenager that we did not see eye to eye. I am not saying our relationship is anything like the one in the book, but I am glad that Nicholas Sparks tackled the issue of daughters and their fathers at that age. And for all of you wondering out there, my father and I truly enjoy each other's company now that I am not a teenager.

Spoiler...... The second reason I connected with the book and felt a need to write about it was because not only did I reach my goal of finishing the darn thing after renewing it, but I also recently went through a similar situation with my aunt. This past September my aunt was diagnosed with esophagus cancer and experienced many of the same things Steve experienced in the book. Unfortunately, she lost her battle with cancer in February. And, while I feel I have come to terms with her struggle and my loss, I have to admit it was therapeutic to read and did provide me with some closure.

I have to say that I am very lucky, I have lost very few people in my life. The last time I lost someone prematurely I found closure in another book, Mitch Albom's The Five People You Meet in Heaven. And, granted the two deaths were very different, one from cancer and another that is still unexplained. I strongly believe a good book, can really provide some insight, even months later.