In this dazzling new novel, Emily Giffin, the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Something Borrowed, Where We Belong, and The One & Only introduces a pair of sisters who find themselves at a crossroads.
Growing up, Josie and Meredith Garland shared a loving, if sometimes contentious relationship. Josie was impulsive, spirited, and outgoing; Meredith hardworking, thoughtful, and reserved. When tragedy strikes their family, their different responses to the event splinter their delicate bond.
Fifteen years later, Josie and Meredith are in their late thirties, following very different paths. Josie, a first grade teacher, is single—and this close to swearing off dating for good. What she wants more than the right guy, however, is to become a mother—a feeling that is heightened when her ex-boyfriend’s daughter ends up in her class. Determined to have the future she’s always wanted, Josie decides to take matters into her own hands.
On the outside, Meredith is the model daughter with the perfect life. A successful attorney, she’s married to a wonderful man, and together they’re raising a beautiful four-year-old daughter. Yet lately, Meredith feels dissatisfied and restless, secretly wondering if she chose the life that was expected of her rather than the one she truly desired.
As the anniversary of their tragedy looms and painful secrets from the past begin to surface, Josie and Meredith must not only confront the issues that divide them, but also come to terms with their own choices. In their journey toward understanding and forgiveness, both sisters discover they need each other more than they knew . . . and that in the recipe for true happiness, love always comes first.
Emotionally honest and utterly enthralling, First Comes Love is a story about family, friendship, and the courage to follow your own heart—wherever that may lead.
I was beyond excited when I first learned that Emily Giffin was penning a new novel, so the day that it was released I snatched up my copy from the local bookstore. Of course, I was in the middle of reading a different book, so it took me longer than desired to start reading it.
Once I did get to it though, I had mixed feelings. While I wasn’t head over heels in love with the characters (Meredith and Josie are both blind to their own shallow behaviour and put the blame on one another too much), I did enjoy the story itself. Too often in life do you hear about people choosing what they think is right for everyone, not just themselves, and it’s easy to forget that you need to do what’s best for you and your own happiness.
CAUTION, THERE BE SPOILERS BELOW …
I didn’t think Josie’s decision to venture into motherhood via donor was selfish – being a single parent scares the ever-loving bejesus out of me. There are so many wrongs ways go go about having a child, and she chose her method wisely.
(However, I would’ve perhaps liked to have seen more romance for Josie instead of awkward friendship dates with her donor.)
And Meredith … I just don’t know. I don’t think she stood up for herself enough, but I suppose that was the theme of the book. She wasn’t honest with herself and paid the price when it came to her marriage. I think the only thing she was really honest about was not wanting to have another child, and it frustrated me that her husband was upset about that. (I could write an entire post on that topic though, so I won’t get into here.)
But again, I did like the story itself. When something tragic happens, it’s really hard to find closure and it’s hard to realize that not everyone grieves the same. For some, it may take only a few weeks, or like in the case of Meredith and Josie, it may take someone years to wrap their heads around what happens and to come to terms with it. I cannot fault the characters for that whatsoever.
Overall, I’m giving First Comes Love 4 stars out of 5. There could have been a few more layers to the characters, but it was still enjoyable.