Nicholas Sparks' The Guardian

Satisfactory Essays
Nicholas Sparks' The Guardian

In this book, Julie Barenson is a young widow, whose husband Jim died earlier from cancer. Her husband left her two unexpected gifts. The first was a Great Dane puppy name Singer (this gift was delivered the first Christmas after his passing) and the other gift was his promise that he would always be watching over her. About four years after his passing, Julie is twenty-nine years old and is too young to have given up on love just yet. She may be ready to risk caring for someone again but she just can't figure out who that person is yet. She starts dating Richard Franklin, a sophisticated, handsome engineer who treats Julie like a queen. The other person she has an option to date is Mike Harris, the down-to-earth guy who was her husband's best friend.

Her first dates with Richard Franklin are perfect. She enjoys his company and is interested in him. Richard often comes to visit Julie at her work as a hairdresser in a small town called Swansboro. At first, Julie wants to continue dating him because he is simply "charming". Then things start to get weird… he constantly comes to visit her and he buys her an extremely expensive necklace with her initials engraved on it. Julie feels like it is too soon for him to be getting her expensive gifts like that.

Little does Julie know that Richard is an obsessed lunatic, who watches her constantly. He drives past her house, parks across the street and watches her for hours. When she talks to or just hangs out with other guys, he gets very jealous and questions her about it. Julie tries to be nice to him and simply quit seeing him, but he won't have it. The deepest, darkest secret about Richard is that he takes pictures of her all the time then he develops them in his darkroom at his house. No one else catches this…they all assume that he is a great, normal guy.

Meanwhile, Julie's dog, Singer, has a mind of his own. He acts like a real person. Julie talks to him as if it is her child. When she looks at Singer, she is reminded of her husband. She feels that Singer "protects" her and "guards" her. Whenever Richard came over to Julie's house, Singer would growl and it was obvious he did not like Richard.
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