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Summary: Katie is a young woman trying to escape an abusive marriage. She moves to Southport, North Carolina. Southport isn't fond of outsiers, but Katie manages to get a serving job at Ivan's, a local seafood restaurant. She rents a cottage in the woods. She's afraid her abusive ex-husband (a Boston police detective) is trying to find her, she takes on a new identity and tries to keep to herself. Katie eventually meets a single widowed father named Alex, who owns a local store. Before Katie has the chance to tell Alex about her past abusive relationship, they fell in love. Eventually her husband tracks her down and Katie's life - past and present - slowly start un-raveling. This novel is promoted as both a young adult and adult mystery romance.
Type of Reading: independent reading
Recommended Age: read together: 15 and up; read yourself: 11 and Up
Young Reader Reaction: Has Nicholas Sparks ever written a bad book? Nope. I loved how Safe Haven constantly keeps the reader guessing. There are lots of unexpected turns, too. At about the middle of the book, I thought that the ending would be very predictable. I was definitely wrong. The ending was certainly a twist. Actually, I didn't like that the end was my favorite part. I wish the rest of the book would have been just as good as the ending. Safe Haven is aimed toward young adults, but it is a great read for anyone who loves suspense and mystery. Borrow this from the library or give it as a gift. It's a great read.
Adult Reader Reaction: Review pending.
Pros: Suspense, unexpected twists, and plenty of mystery will keep you spellbound until the end.
Cons: Although this has a middle-grade reading level, the content is for more mature audience (read: high school and above).
Borrow or Buy: Borrow, at least. This is a great for lovers of suspense, romance, or both!