Title: The Last Song.
Author: Nicholas Sparks.
Genre: Fiction, romance, chick-lit, teen, Bildungsroman.
Publication Date: September 1, 2009.
Summary: Seventeen year old Veronica "Ronnie" Miller's life was turned upside-down when her parents divorced and her father moved from New York City to Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina. Three years later, she remains angry and alienated from her parents, especially her father, until her mother decides it would be in everyone's best interest if she spent the summer in Wilmington with him. Ronnie's father, a former concert pianist and teacher, is living a quiet life in the beach town, immersed in creating a work of art that will become the centerpiece of a local church. The tale that unfolds is a story of love on many levels - first love, love between parents and children - that demonstrates the many ways that love can break our hearts, and heal them.
My rating: 7/10.
♥ Will blinked. "You hate the piano that much?"
"Yes," she answered.
"Because your dad was your teacher?" She looked up in surprise as Will went on. "He used to teach at Juilliard, right? It only makes sense that he'd teach you to play. And I'd be willing to bet that you were great at it, if only because you have to love something before you can hate it."
♥ When he didn't answer, she could feel the blood rising in her cheeks. She knew she shouldn't be angry, but she couldn't help it. "What? Were you planning to tell me on the phone? What were you going to say? 'Oh, sorry I didn't mention this when we were together last summer, but I have terminal cancer. How's it going with you?'"
"If you weren't going to tell me, why did you bring me down here? So I could watch you die?"
"No, sweetie, just the opposite." He rolled his head to face her. "I asked you to come so I could watch you live."
♥ Life, he realized, was much like a song.
In the beginning there is a mystery, in the end there is confirmation, but it's the middle where all the emotion resides to make the whole thing worthwhile.
For the first time in months, he felt no pain at all; for the first time in years, he knew his questions had answers. As he listened to the song that Ronnie had finished, the song that Ronnie had perfected, he closed his eyes in the knowledge that his search for God's presence had been fulfilled.
He finally understood that God's presence was everywhere, at all times, and was experienced by everyone at one time or another. It had been with him in the workshop as he'd labored over the window with Jonah; it had been present in the weeks he'd spent with Ronnie. It was present here and now as his daughter played their song, last song they would ever share. In retrospect, he wondered how he could have missed something so incredibly obvious.
God, he suddenly understood, was love in its purest form, and in these last months with his children, he had felt His touch as surely as he had heard the music spilling from Ronnie's hands.