Review: The Death and Life of Charlie St Cloud by Ben Sherwood

With the imminent UK release of the movie version staring Zac Efron, I thought it might be fun to look again at one of my pre-book-blog book reviews ;) of the book on which it is based. This review originally appeared on my personal blog on January 22, 2006.

This is one of those books that are really hard to review without giving away the plot. However I shall endeavor to do my best.

The story revolves around the titular Charlie St Cloud, starting with the close relationship between the 15 year old Charlie and his 12 year old brother. Both good, responsible kids apart from one day, when an error of judgement by Charlie leads to a fatal accident, in which his brother perishes and Charlie barely survives.

You know this is going to happen, it says so in the blurb, and reading the chapters which deal with it, is like sitting in the road waiting for the truck to hit, and not being able/wanting to get out of the way.

Afterwards the story proper starts 13 years later, with Charlie still trying to come to terms with his loss.

I enjoyed the journey the author takes Charlie on as he eventually comes to terms with everything, and he takes time to show what a thoroughly nice guy Charlie is, (and not just because of his need for atonement).

Along the way he meets Tess Carroll, a yachtswoman who finally completes Charlie’s journey from death to life. And a sweet heart warming romance it is to, and could be even better if it had longer to develop. I understand the authors reasons for not doing so (as will you when you read it,) but still I was left with a sense of something missing

Is it a good read though? Without doubt it is, I read it in a night, a first for me for quite a while, and even though you will want more from the book than it can give you, I definitely recommend it.

Buy: The Life and Death of Charlie St Cloud by Ben Sherwood

Darren

Bart, is a fully signed up member of Book Addicts Anonymous ;) Despite, constantly fighting a losing battle against his T.B.R pile, he is never happier than when he manages to sneak a new book in to the house!

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7 Responses

  1. Gina says:

    Enjoyed the post! This one is on my wish list for a future read ever since I saw the movie preview. It definitely looks like it has its sad parts, but hey….that’s what life is sometimes. Sounds like a great read for a quick weekend getaway…thanks for sharing!

  2. Amanda says:

    If you go to see the movie, I hope you enjoy it! (I was bawling for a pretty good portion of it, but my nan was fine. That’s the British stiff upper lip for you. LOL)

  3. Trisha says:

    I have to admit I was a little iffy about this one, but I may have to read/watch it now.

  4. Amused says:

    Good to know the book is as good as the movie looks! The book should always be better anyway :)

  5. Amanda says:

    Wow that sounds really powerful. I’m not sure I could handle reading it right at this time, but I’ll put it on my mental shelves to read when I’m feeling a bit stronger.

  6. Lynn says:

    I loved this book and I think this is the first time I’ve come across a review of it on someone’s blog!
    Thanks
    Lynn

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