Review: First Comes Love by Emily Giffin

Release date: June 28, 2016

Publisher: Ballantine Books

Genre: Chick Lit

Goodreads blurb: 

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’ve been such a huge fan of Giffin since Something Borrowed was released. She’s one of my auto buy authors and though she probably still will be for me, her past few books haven’t been on quite the same level as her earlier work for me.

This book is told alternately from both Josie and Meredith’s point of view, which is a touch that I can always appreciate. It was interesting to see how differently both women interpreted the same situations. Two sisters who couldn’t be more unlike, they fight and bicker over everything you can think of. They see the world differently, view love and marriage differently, and both have dealt with a tragedy in their family completely differently. 

I always love a novel that focuses on a relationship between sisters as my own sister is my very best friend. This one just made me sad as both of them harbored so much resentment, jealousy and bitterness towards each other. I understand that many relationships between siblings are complicated and not everyone is as close to their siblings as I am to my sister, but I found I really couldn’t relate to either of them.

While I enjoyed this book while reading it, I didn’t fall in love with it. I did like the overall themes of forgiveness and hope though and it was a book that was an easy and light read. Some of the magic Giffen was able to create in her books like Something Borrowed, Something Blue and Love the One You’re With is missing here. She is an extremely talented writer though and I can still say I’m a fan.

Overall rating: 3/5

4 thoughts on “Review: First Comes Love by Emily Giffin

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