My enormous thanks to Emma Knight at Hodder for an advance reader copy of First Comes Love by Emily Giffin. First Comes Love will be published by Hodder on 22nd September 2016 and is available for purchase from your local Amazon site and all good book sellers including Barnes and Noble and Waterstones.
First Comes Love
What happens when love, marriage and children don’t come in the expected order?
Fifteen years after the tragic death of their older brother splintered Josie and Meredith’s already fragile relationship, the two sisters are following very different paths.
Hardworking, reserved Meredith thought she’d done it all the right way round – married the perfect man, had the perfect daughter – but now she’s wondering if she got the love part wrong.
Impulsive and spirited Josie has been single for years. She wants a child so much that she’s preparing to head straight for the baby carriage all on her own.
As the anniversary of their tragedy looms and secrets from the past surface, Josie and Meredith must come to terms with their own choices. Perhaps they’ll find that they need each other more than they know…
My Review of First Comes Love
Daniel’s death fifteen years previously has affected his sisters, Meredith and Josie, far more than they have confessed to one another – or to those around them.
Those expecting a fast paced chick lit read from Emily Giffin suggested by the title First Comes Love will be disappointed. Those hoping for a mature and deftly written exploration of grief, family relationships and what it is to be a woman will be richly rewarded.
First Comes Love was my first Emily Giffin read and I thought it was so good. She writes with a richness and assured style that I thoroughly enjoyed. The two sisters Josie and Meredith are not especially attractive characters initially, Josie being selfish and impulsive, Meredith being dour and controlling, but as the narrative progresses different layers are revealed so that I felt proper empathy towards them by the end of the book and came to think of them as real people. I thought this was so clever. Emily Giffin has drawn in the reader to the family dynamics so that they experience the relationships in tandem with the characters. I think it is the excellent quality of the dialogue that adds to this effect.
After the initial setting up, the plot is minimal as this is a book more about delving into relationships and feelings, but what there is is convincing and entertaining. I loved the dynamics between Pete and Josie, and Gabe and Josie, which are a lighter foil to the more intense partnership of Meredith and Nolan. There is hope, but there is also realism which I thoroughly appreciated.
First Comes Love is a book that, in a sense, belies its title. No quick, fluffy, insubstantial read here, but a frequently intense, intelligently written and compelling exploration of family, relationships and, yes, real love.
About Emily Giffin
Emily Giffin is the author of seven New York Times bestselling novels. She practiced litigation at a Manhattan firm for several years before writing full term. She lives in Atlanta with her husband and three children.