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The Death And Life Of Charlie St. Cloud (2005)

The Death and Life of Charlie St. Cloud (2005)

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3.99 of 5 Votes: 5
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0330488902 (ISBN13: 9780330488907)
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About book The Death And Life Of Charlie St. Cloud (2005)

Last Friday, I was in NBS Centerpoint checking their 75% cutdown sale. I bought some P99 previously US library books, some brand new ones like "Tinkers" and "Sh*t My Father Says" (reviewed previous to this). Then I saw this book. It had been a while since I read a current Movie-Tie-In book so I checked this out. This edition was published in June 2010 and still sitting there in the New Arrivals gondola. I checked the blurbs and all the famous current bestselling authors are saying something good about the book: Sue Monk Kidd says one of the most magical stories I've ever read; Adriana Trigiana this is a story that will grip you from page one; James Patterson You won't forget Charlie and Tess and Sam; Luanne Rice A perfect miracle of a love story and even the novelist who I hate most, Nicholas Sparks, says: Touching, wise, and full of hope, everything a wonderful novel should be.So, I bought the book and read it the whole day today, Sunday, August 8, 2010. And oh, those authors above say it all and say it true. This is a very nice book. Almost amazing. It is just that I am not giving this a 5-star because I will be degrading the likes of Boris Pasternak, Louis de Bernieres, John Steinbeck by putting Ben Sherwood in THAT same level. Not yet but Sherwood's Charlie St. Cloud is definitely a mile better than Nicholas Sparks' The Lucky One or even his bigger hit Message in a Bottle.The reason is that this book, originally entitled as The Life and Death of Charlie St. Cloud when it was first published in 2004 is not just an ordinary boy-meets-girl love story. That tested formula, told in many ways - different characters, different situations, etc. - by novelist like Sparks comes second in terms of this book's theme. More than that kind of love, Charlie St. Cloud is a love story between two brothers: 15-y/o Charlie and his younger brother, 12-y/o Sam. Theirs is a strong bond that I have never read until today. Something that I think I never experienced even with either one of my two older brothers. Imagine this scene when they were about to part ways towards the end of the novel:"Promise you won't leave me," Charlie said."Promise""Swear?" he said, amazed to find himself repeating the very same conversation from all those years ago. This time, however, it was Sam who comforted Charlie."I swear," his kid brother said."Cross your heart and hope to die?""Hope to die," Sam said. "I love you.""I love you too." The brothers stood up.It is cheesy and almost gayish. Maybe we are not the kissing and hugging people in the family but it just feels unnatural to be saying those lines. However, Charlie and Sam are fatherless and they are only living with their mother. The story did not mention any friends they hang up with. Of course, Sherwood also explains in the interview that he hopes to have his own 2 sons to develop the kind of bond like that of Charlie and Sam's.The writing is ordinary but it has many heart-tugging quotable sweet quotes that you will surely love. The love story between Charlie and Tess does not go "overboard". The ghostly side of story reminds me of Demi Moore's Ghost or the Melinda Gordon's character in the TV series Ghost Whisperer but we don't always need to have original concepts to like a good story anyway.I also appreciated Sherwood using lines from Dive for Dreams by e.e. cummings to heighten the emotion of the story: trust your heartif the seas catch fire(and live by lovethough the stars walk backwards) If you want to reminisce your first love or to fall in love again, give this book a try. Forget about Zach Efron who will play Charlie and Amanda Crew as Tess in Universal Pictures soon-to-be-shown movie adaptation. Just read the book. For almost always, the book is better than the movie.

My journey reading The Death and Life of Charlie St. Cloud was a little bit bumpy. At first, I was unsure of whether or not I would stick to it. Those first 50 pages were just so slow going. But after that it started moving a little bit faster. Of course, then I had another issue which was the fact that this was first and foremost (something that completely threw me off since I had no idea it was going to be that much) a romance. And I'm not a big romance fan. However, the book seemed like it had potential so I kept reading it. That's something that I don't regret at all.The Death and Life of Charlie St. Cloud was just such a sweet book. I was aww-ing through a whole lot if it and then crying (I'm such a sucker) through the rest. It wasn't really the romance that had me so emotional (although I am going to admit that the whole aspect of Charlie and Tess' relationship was done so well that I really enjoyed it. Kill me now.), but the relationship between Charlie and his younger brother Sam. Sigh. Now that was a love so deep (and a kept promise that was so strong) that it transcended the normal laws of physics. So, so, so sweet.I loved the two brothers. And I really thought that this was a story about two brothers. I knew there was going to be romance involved, but again, I thought the bigger deal was the brothers. Not so much. The big deal was the romance. Again I say that I did like the romance, but I would've loved this book so much more had the author delved into the brothers' relationship a little more deeply. I also would've liked to know more about Charlie's relationship with his mother since it's only slightly alluded on.In spite of these (in my humble opinion) minor flaws, I really did enjoy The Death and Life of Charlie St. Cloud. I thought it was tremendously well done and the descriptive writing in this book was amazing. I felt like I could feel the breeze of wind or the splash of the water. This was an engaging (after the first 50 pages), touching, and very moving story. Highly recommended.

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Okay sure so I was able to figure out how this was going to end before I got there, but that did not (surprisingly) change my opinion of the book. I still really enjoyed the story and the characters. I would in a way compare this somewhat to a Nicholas Sparks novel, but then in a way I wouldn't. Nicholas Sparks does not always give a happy ending. Ben Sherwood at least in this novel does. This novel however does give you the happy ending. Charlie will save the day; Tess will somehow magically survive her horrendous accident. This is in no way reality, which I tend to prefer when dealing with stories that could be remote possibilities, and its a real stretch but I can accept the ending because I liked the characters enough to do so.

Oh my goodness!!! What a great book! I was initially attracted to this book because the movie is coming out later this week and we have a "Chick Night" planned for the girls and I to go see it. Then I started reading... First of all, I was absolutely amazed at Ben Sherwood's writing style. He's one of those writers who packs SO MUCH in a paragraph...I read a couple of them to Maddi as we were driving around one day and she was shocked! You knew so much without a lot of details, lot of words, etc., but you KNEW what was happening!! Then you go on with the story. It's incredibly intriguing and heart-wrenching. I instantly fell in love with Charlie because of his love of family and desire to remain connected to those who have passed on from this life. While it doesn't go along with my beliefs, it was a great "What if..." opportunity. Through the middle of the book, I got a bit upset because it wasn't going the way I thought it should but it DEFINITELY redeemed itself by the end. I can't wait to see the movie!! Zac Efron will make a WONDERFUL Charlie St. Cloud!! :)

Description: “The Death and Life of Charlie St. Cloud” tells the haunting story of a young man who narrowly survives a terrible car wreck that kills his little brother. Years later, the brothers’ bond remains so strong that it transcends the normal boundaries separating life and death. Charlie St. Cloud lives in a snug New England fishing village. By day he tends the lawns and monuments of the ancient cemetery where his younger brother, Sam, is buried. Graced with an extraordinary gift after surviving the accident, he can still see, talk, and even play catch with Sam’s spirit. But townsfolk whisper that Charlie has never recovered from his loss.Into his carefully ordered life comes Tess Carroll, a captivating, adventuresome woman training for a solo sailing trip around the globe. Fate steers her boat into a treacherous storm that blows her back to harbor, to a charged encounter with Charlie, and to a surprise more overwhelming than the violent sea itself. Charlie and Tess discover a beautiful and uncommon connection that leads to a race against time and a desperate choice between death and life, between the past and the future, between holding on and letting this book delivers some heavy material to digest. I first wanted to read the book because I saw that they were making a movie with Zac Efron and I mean, come on, who doesn't like a good Efron movie? So I stopped at the local Target and picked it up. What a good decision. Charlie was a wonderful character and I fell in love with Sam, his little brother because he was sort of the comedic relief throughout the story. I did think that the main characters, Tess and Charlie, were a little old for my taste...I think they were in their 30's. I'm not saying that's old or anything, but I think I was a little influenced my picturing Zac instead. I thought the connection that the two brothers share is just extraordinary and so so sweet. This book reallt made me question what I plan on doing with my life and realize that I should live every second to the fullest and not take anything for know, all the normal cliche stuff....but this book took that to the next level because it's relateble unlike many books nowadays. I'm referring of course to the Vampire section, formerly known as the young adult section. I plan on seeing the movie sometime this week so I don't now how they compare just quite yet. But I don't think there is any way to really screw it up, because anyway you look at it, it is a wonderful and sweet story line.

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