The Wish is the latest book from Nicholas Sparks, a heartwarming tale about friendship, love and loss. It’s a poignant story that will see you rejoicing in young love, as much as it will break your heart with the gut-wrenching feelings of regret and sadness that are wound together in the misfortune of timing.
The story focuses on the life of Maggie, a young fine arts photographer who is fighting for her life as she battles cancer. It moves between the present day, where we are given a raw and honest account of her day-to-day struggles, and her past, as she shares a detailed account of her unexpected stay with her aunt in a small town.
It’s a conversational way of telling Maggie’s story in the past because of how she’s sharing it with her new friend Mark in the present, and as a reader I felt as if she was talking directly to me which I loved. The character development is strong, and you’ll find yourself really feeling her pain at not having a close relationship with her parents, at her agony of knowing their disappointment in her life’s choices, and the lack of closeness to her sister.
In the present you’re given an intimate look into the thoughts and fears of a person with cancer, but it’s the past where the book truly shone for me. Even though Maggie is sent away because of a teenage pregnancy, you’ll find yourself rejoicing in the unforeseen fondness and acceptance she finds while staying with her aunt, and how close she grew to this woman who was a stranger before she arrived.
It is here too where Maggie meets Bryce, and it’s this friendship that is the focal point throughout the book. As her pregnancy progresses and their friendship grows into love, you’re left wondering how the story is going to end. Their love story is beautiful, and I’ll be honest I was never ready for the ending. The tale of friendship, love and loss was achingly real, and there was a strong message to celebrate each day as well as a reminder to cherish time with those precious to us.
I think that those who find this book wrapped under the Christmas tree will be delighted with the time they spend with The Wish.
The Wish is available for a recommended retail price of R322.
Thanks to Jonathan Ball Publishers for sending me this book in exchange for an honest review.