Usually, I’m one of those people who often pushes that the book is better than its movie adaptation. I rarely discourage the consumption of both mediums for the sake of comparison, but I more often than not agree with many others that movies rarely live up to their literary inspirations due to one reason or another. Nicholas Sparks’ books and resulting movies, however, have so far managed to turn this around. I’ve only read two of his books, but with both of them I’ve found myself enjoying the movie far more than the book. Maybe I’m just not into his writing or something. I’m not exactly sure myself. Either way, A Walk to Remember did not break the trend.
A Walk to Remember by Nicholas Sparks
Genres: Young Adult, Fiction, Romance
Release Date: September 1st 2000 by Grand Central Publishing
Format: Paperback, 240 pages.
Rating: 4/5 Crabapples
Find it here: Goodreads || Book Depository
There was a time when the world was sweeter… when the women in Beaufort, North Carolina, wore dresses, and the men donned hats…Every April, when the wind smells of both the sea and lilacs, Landon Carter remembers 1958, his last year at Beaufort High. Landon had dated a girl or two, and even once sworn that he’d been in love. Certainly the last person he thought he’d fall for was Jamie, the shy, almost ethereal daughter of the town’s Baptist minister… Jamie, who was destined to show him the depths of the human heart—and the joy and pain of living.
I personally liked what they changed for the movie from the book. Sure, it made the movie wall into the territory of an overused trope, but it made the story have a little more of satisfaction to it for me once “boy” was an actual bad boy instead of a guy who was “bad” because he ate peanuts at night in a graveyard. It seemed to me like it gave Landon more significance as a character once it finally reached the end and his relationship with dying Jaime came to its highest point before dipping.
I liked the idea of him going to her for a different reason than in the book, too. In the book, he asked Jaime to a dance, but in the movie, he was forced into interacting with her thanks to something he had done. He had to build up to seeing Jaime as a girl and a person instead of seeing it outright, and it all fell together in the play he took part in in the movie. Their whole relationship build up, from the dislike to the love to the devotion they had for one another, I liked so much more in the movie. Probably because I could watch it happen.
Something I liked better in the books was definitely Jaime and Landon’s interaction with the orphans, and how Jaime would go and read a story to them. Landon eventually would go along, too, and end up enjoying himself as he continued to join her. I wish they had included that in the movie, even, I think it would have been a good visual to show the change Landon was going through as a person, and how he was growing up and changing thanks to his connection with Jaime.
Jaime changed his life in both books, but I feel like there was more of an impact to it in the movie than there was in the book — though, in the end, it really was one of those “cancer changed someone’s life” story, with the exception of Jaime changing Landon’s life before he had known she was sick.
Not a fan of Nicholas Sparks, but I have to say, the movies based off his books are pretty good.
Thanks for reading!