The Sappiness of Sparks

Author Nicholas Sparks often writes tearjerkers.  His stories and film adaptations of love and loss like The Notebook and A Walk to Remember continue to wring out countless tears years after their release.  If you want a good cry then grab a Sparks work.

Some of my friends resent his work as over-sentimental fluff.  While I agree that he often writes sappy novels I do not believe he should be entirely dismissed.  After reading his book "Three Weeks With My Brother" I can affirm that Nicholas Sparks has important things to say in today's world.

In his nonfiction memoir "Three Weeks With My Brother" Nicholas Sparks along with his brother Micah remind readers that life's ordinary moments are priceless.  The book recounts their family life.  The Sparks share openly their family struggles and successes.

As children in poverty they depended on creativity for fun.  In High School they bonded through cross country running.  They share about the difficulty of moving to different colleges, watching pets grow old and die and establishing new families of their own.

The more you read the sadder it gets.  Their mother, fond of horses, died at age 47 from a bizarre horse riding accident.  The authors detail that their parents enjoyed a horse ride and picnic along Sacramento's American River.  Their mother's horse stumbled on that hot cloudy day ending her life.

Three years later doctors diagnosed their 26 year old sister with brain cancer.  Her fight with cancer lasted seven years.  It ended on the steps of a San Francisco medical center where a brother and sister sat and discussed their lack of options.  They had tried every treatment possible without victory.

After reading this book it's no wonder why Nicholas Sparks writes effective tearjerkers.  He is no stranger to tragedy.  His message of not taking for granted life's everyday moments resonates clearly with me.

So while Sparks can write sappy chick-stories he can also remind readers to savor life's simplicity.  That message holds value with me.  I believe our world can benefit from it too.