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Happy Birthday, Nicholas Sparks!

By Andrea Koczela. Dec 29, 2013. 8:00 AM.

Nicholas Sparks, one of the fiction world’s most popular and prolific writers, was born on December 31, 1965. Author of eighteen books, Sparks has over 89 million copies in print, and his novels have been translated into over 50 languages. Eight of his books have been adapted into film.

Sparks first achieved popularity with The Notebook, his second novel. A love story inspired by his wife’s grandparents, he wrote the book in six months at the age of 28. Two years after its completion, he had found a literary agent, received a $1 million dollar advance, and become an instant New York Times bestselling author.

Nicholas_SparksSparks was born on December 31, 1965 in Omaha, Nebraska. One of three children, the early death of his sister Dana inspired the main character of A Walk to Remember. Sparks graduated as valedictorian of his high school and attended The University of Notre Dame on a full athletic scholarship. He graduated with honors in 1988 and met his wife, Cathy, the same year. They were married in 1989.

A graduate in business finance, Sparks embarked on a series of jobs after college. He worked as a waiter, real estate appraiser, telemarketer, and finally a pharmaceuticals salesman. He continued in this career even after the success of The Notebook in 1996. He finally quit his job in 1997 after selling the film rights to his next novel, A Message in a Bottle.

Sparks is best known for his novels, The Notebook (1996), Message in a Bottle (1998), A Walk to Remember (1999), The Rescue (2000), The Guardian (2003), Dear John (2006), The Last Song (2009), and Safe Haven (2010). His characters have been portrayed by a host of famous actors including Kevin Costner, Paul Newman, Diane Lane, and Ryan Gosling.


Sparks lives in North Carolina with his wife, three sons, and twin daughters. He and his wife are notable philanthropists, donating millions to schools, universities, and other charities.

Collecting Nicholas Sparks Books

Nicholas Sparks' consistent popularity has made him a frequent focus for collectors of modern first editions. Find a few select titles below, enjoy complete selection of signed first editions in our Nicholas Sparks section.



The Notebook

First Edition in unread As New condition, SIGNED and dated 4/17/99 by author Nicholas Sparks directly on the title page.

Back in North Carolina after the war, Noah Calhoun cannot stop thinking about the girl he had lost a decade ago, and even though she is on the verge of marriage, she cannot stop thinking about him. Spark's first book.

Basis for the movie starring Ryan Gosling, Rachel McAdams, James Garner and Gena Rowlands.


Dear John

First Edition in As New condition, SIGNED by author Nicholas Sparks on the title page. Also signed by actor Channing Tatum on the half-title page during the movie production in South Carolina. A unique, double signed First Edition. 

John Tyree meets the girl of his dreams in this novel by bestselling author Nicholas Sparks. The events of 9/11 turn Tyree's life upside down, forcing him to choose between his new life as a soldier and his new love for Savannah Lynn Curtis. 

Basis for the movie starring Channing Tatum and Amanda Seyfried.


Message in a Bottle

First Edition in Fine condition, SIGNED and dated 5/7/98 by author Nicholas Sparks on the title page; 

Sparks' tale of self-discovery, renewal, and the courage it takes to love again. When a 36-year-old single mother finds a love letter in a half-buried bottle while jogging along the shores of Cape Cod, she decides to take a dramatic leap that will forever change her life. 

Basis for the movie with Kevin Costner, Robin Wright Penn and Paul Newman.


Nights in Rodanthe

First Edition in unread Fine condition in alike dust-jacket, SIGNED by author Nicholas Sparks on the title page, surprisingly scarce in signed, collectible condition; 

As the storm is approaching the small coastal village of Rodanthe, North Carolina, two people with shattered lives search shelter and comfort, but set off emotions that go well beyond the duration of the storm. 

Basis for the movie starring Richard Gere and Diane Lane.


The Wedding

First Edition in Very Fine condition, SIGNED by author Nicholas Sparks directly on the title page.

Sparks returns to characters from The Notebook (1996) and writes about Allie and Noah Calhoun's oldest daughter, Jane, and her husband, Wilson. As their thirtieth anniversary approaches, Wilson realizes that he loves Jane now more than ever and worries that his neglect (he completely forgot their twenty-ninth anniversary) may have finally driven her away.


The Guardian

First Edition in As New condition, SIGNED by author Nicholas Sparks on the title page; 

With The Guardian, Sparks explores a darker realm of the heart in an explosive and emotional tale of love and obsession. At 29, Julie Barenson's life is about to become a living nightmare, as one man's jealousy spins into a deadly obsession.

Andrea Koczela
Enthusiast of modern and classic literature who loves transforming obscure topics into interesting reads. Writer, editor, marketer, and bookseller.


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