Review: On Second Thought by Kristan Higgins @Kristan_Higgins

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Release date: January 31, 2017

Publisher: HQN Books

Genre: Women’s Fiction, Contemporary Romance


Ainsley O’Leary is so ready to get married—she’s even found the engagement ring her boyfriend has stashed away. What she doesn’t anticipate is being blindsided by a breakup he chronicles in a blog…which (of course) goes viral. Devastated and humiliated, Ainsley turns to her older half sister, Kate, who’s struggling with a sudden loss of her own.

Kate’s always been the poised, self-assured sister, but becoming a newlywed—and a widow—in the space of four months overwhelms her. Though the sisters were never close, she starts to confide in Ainsley, especially when she learns her late husband was keeping a secret from her.

Despite the murky blended-family dynamic that’s always separated them, Ainsley’s and Kate’s heartaches bind their summer together when they come to terms with the inevitable imperfection of relationships and family—and the possibility of one day finding love again.


Every time Higgins releases a new book and I finish reading it I think, this is her best one yet, it’s my favorite, she’s topped herself again. She’s that’s good you guys, her work gets stronger and she was already extremely talented to begin with. I don’t even have to read the blurb for her novels, I’m reading it no matter what, but when I did read the blurb for this one I was thrilled. Her last book, If You Only Knew was also about sisters and she has such a gift for writing about these complicated relationships with humor and insight. 

This flips back and forth from both Ainsley and Kate’s point of view, which I love, multiple narrators are my thing and Higgins does this flawlessly. Ainsley is the younger sister and she’s been dating the same guy for eleven years. She knows they’ll get married one day, but life keeps getting in the way. When she gets dumped instead of proposed to she’s shocked and humiliated. Did I mention that he chronicles this in his blog and it goes viral? Yikes. Kate is the older sister and after decades of being single she’s finally found love and married Nathan. Bliss is short though when he dies in a freak accident and she’s devastated and broken. Ainsley and Kate have never been close, but can they lean on each other when they both need it the most? 

What makes Higgins book standout to me is the amazing characters she creates. I completely related and felt a deep connection to both Ainsley and Kate and by the end I felt like they were both friends of mine. Their journeys are messy, heartbreaking, raw, honest and so very real. Besides the sisters, this book is chock full of fantastic secondary characters that you’ll both love and hate. From Eric the pompous ass who dumped Ainsley, to Daniel the Hot Firefighter and Jonathan, Ainsley’s  robotic like alien boss, to my favorite, Gram Gram. She is so sassy, she’s shamelessly looking for love and not too proud to use Tinder, she cracked me up! Leo and Jenny from If You Only Knew also make several appearances and I adored checking in with them. 

Reading a Higgins book is like eating my ultimate comfort food for me, they just always make me feel warm and cozy by the end. Her books are full of so much heart, you can’t help but feel as if you’re experiencing what the characters are right along with them. If you haven’t read any of her books yet, I urge you to give them a shot. You can pick up any of them, but as I said earlier, I feel like they get better with each one, so start with If You Only Knew then try this one. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed, in fact I think you’ll discover your new favorite author. 

Overall rating: 5/5

Thanks to Claire at Little Bird Publicity for my review copy. 

About the Author: 

Kristan Higgins is the New York Times, USA TODAY, Wall Street Journal and Publishers Weekly bestselling author of 16 novels, which have been translated into more than twenty languages. Her books have received dozens of awards and accolades, including starred reviews from Kirkus, The New York Journal of Books, Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and Booklist. She is a five-time nominee for The Kirkus Prize for Best Work of Fiction, and her books regularly appear on the lists for best novels of the year of many prestigious journals and review sites.


Kristan lives in Connecticut with her heroic firefighter husband, their freakishly beautiful, entertaining and sarcastic children, two overly frisky rescue dogs and an occasionally friendly cat.

18 thoughts on “Review: On Second Thought by Kristan Higgins @Kristan_Higgins

  1. travelingwitht says:

    I LOVE Kristan’s books. I haven’t read all of her earlier books, but the Blue Heron series is some of my fave romance books. But I also love how she writes women’s fiction- and really enjoy this community she’s developed with the past 2 books she’s written.

    Liked by 1 person

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