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Publisher's Summary

Julie Barenson's young husband left her two unexpected gifts before he died - a puppy named Singer and the promise that he would always be watching over her. Now, four years later, 29-year-old Julie is far too young to have given up on love. She may be ready to risk caring for someone again. But who?

Should it be Richard Franklin, the sophisticated, handsome engineer who treats her like a queen? Or Mike Harris, the down-to-earth nice guy who was her husband's best friend? Choosing one of them should bring her more happiness than she's had in years. Instead, Julie is soon fighting for her life in a nightmare spawned by chilling deception and jealousy so poisonous that it has become a murderous desire....

©2003 Nicholas Sparks (P)2003 Time Warner Audiobooks, A division of the AOL Time Warner Book Group

Critic Reviews

"Sparks fans clamor for his brand of love story, and with the added punch of suspense, this one will be another best seller." (Publishers Weekly)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings


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  • Overall

The Guardian is all washed up...

What can one say about a novel in which the main characters are weak and unable to solve any problems? I listened to the whole book just to see if it could get any worse, and unamazingly, it did. There were no heroes in this book, a slight heroine who rides out of the darkness a little late, but only very stupid people who hold inane conversations and unimaginative characters who get seriously injured.

And then Sparks had the nerve to thank everyone in the world for this book, like it was an Academy award.

Don't even waste your time on this one!

97 of 104 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Jo
  • Roseburg, OR, USA
  • 05-28-03

the guardian

I enjoyed this book very much. It tells of a very different sort of stalking than one thinks of when they hear of it. There are times when you just want to shake Julie and make her realize how she is being manipulated by this very devious person. The greatest disappointment that I experienced with it is that just when several points were going to be reconciled and explained a part of the book was missing. I couldn't believe that was the way the author wrote it so I sought out the book and almost 25 pages were not included in the narrative. Not only that but Audible has been unable to rectify this mistake at this point. Do yourself a favor and wait until the entire book is on the site before you listen to it otherwise you will be very frustrated with the lack of resolution of several questions. After the missing portion is included and I listen once again I feel I will be able to raise my review to at least four stars.

20 of 21 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
  • Story
  • Kathy
  • WALHALLA, SC, United States
  • 11-16-13


Some people may enjoy the "victim" attitude but I just get ticked off. This novel just made me angry at the "damsel in distress". I am not saying some listeners may not enjoy this novel but my personality doesn't allow me to do so. The plot was well developed and all the elements of a talented author are present. I am also one who likes to leave a novel with closure and although this one had a definite conclusion, I was still fumming after it was over. I have enough stress in my day, my novels need to help me unwind and not get wound up:)

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Nicole
  • Binghamton, NY, United States
  • 09-20-05

Worst Sparks Book Ever

First, it would have been nice to know that this book is about a stalker. If I would have known that - I would never have started this book. So much for a nice imaginative story with which I could loose myself on my way home from work and relax. Instead, this book was like seeing a horrible car accident and not being able to look away, in hopes of seeing everyone come out alive. The story was a bit slow and sometimes boring. But the worst part was the end. I'm an avid dog lover and I absolutely hated the end. I think this was one of the worst Nicholas Sparks books I've ever read.

12 of 13 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Lisa
  • Columbus, IN, USA
  • 07-23-03

Pretty Good

I actually felt that the characters were more realistic. Most people wouldn't be able to see what was going on if they were in this type of a situation. Singer's presence helped the book along and I was disappointed - but not surprised - at the ending. I think I'll check the actual book out to see if any of the issues that I have with the story is resolved in the "missing" pages.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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Suprisingly UnHappy

What did you like best about The Guardian? What did you like least?

The Storyline was okay.. I think it would make a great movie.. On LIFETIME. however. the person narrating wasnt good.. Her southern accents were horrible and i had issues keeping some of the charcters seperate. Especially since I had to to keep up with the difference between JULIE, JENNIFER and JESSICA at one time

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
  • Story
  • J.
  • 08-22-13

Can't believe I am returning a Nicholas Spark book

I literally could not finish two chapters of this book. Boring is not a sufficient adjective to describe it. Weak characters and the narrator was just so monotone.

Perhaps the meat of this book will come but I could make myself finish it.

I am a big fan of Nicholas Sparks and absolutely loved his book "The Best of Me" and also "Safe Haven" to mention a few.

So glad Audible provides customers options to try other books.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Dennis
  • Amarillo, TX, USA
  • 05-16-05

The Guardian (Unabridged)

This was one of the best books to which I have listened. Not only is Nicholas Sparks a great writer but the narrator is one of the best as well. This is a must have for everyone.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
  • Story

Gripping story!

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Loved this story--it really had me on the edge of my seat at times. It doesn't follow the typical cliche story line for this type of novel--plenty of surprises.

Who was the most memorable character of The Guardian and why?

There are several characters in this novel that I liked. Isabel Keating did a good job of giving each character a unique voice without being overly cheesy or annoying.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
  • Story

A bit predictable, but Sparks always makes me cry!

If you could sum up The Guardian in three words, what would they be?

Predictable. Romantic. Bittersweet.

Who was your favorite character and why?

I loved the dog, Singer. He is the real hero of the story, and Sparks did such a good job of giving the dog a personality of his own.

Would you listen to another book narrated by Isabel Keating?

I have listened to many of Mark Kay Andrews' books narrated by Isabel Keating in the past. If I see her name, I usually will give the book a try. She's a good narrator, especially with southern accents and outrageous characters. This performance wasn't up to par with the MKA books she's narrated, but it was still pretty good.

If you could take any character from The Guardian out to dinner, who would it be and why?

Mike. He sounds like a great guy once you get to know him.

Any additional comments?

Not the best Sparks fare, but it was a decent story that kept me interested and had some good plot twists. This was a nice change from his usual love stories. And, of course, even though I thought I was safe...he made me cry big baby tears at the end! Have your tissues ready!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful