“Love the One You’re With” – Emily Giffin

Recently a good friend of mine, Kimberly, and I decided we would occasionally mail books back and forth that we thought the other might enjoy. The one caveat–the book needed to be a “girly” book that could be read either on the beach, curled up under a fluffy blanket on a rainy day, or while trying to pass the time when traveling. I knew she was an Emily Giffin fan so I requested her to send me a favorite while I sent her “Little Earthquakes” that I reviewed here.

The exchange was great fun and getting the book in the mail with the bookmark Kimberly used, as well as little notes near her favorite parts definitely made for a connecting experience now that she lives in Texas. I have learned that finding and maintaining community in reading, no matter what genre, is a really unique way to connect with a variety of people. So, when I read “Love the One You’re With,” I thought of my friend and how she might have reacted to various parts of the plot.

Now, if you know me, you might know that the very first time my mother showed the musical “Camelot” to me, I was incredibly bothered by the thought that Guinevere would be unfaithful to her husband and have an affair with Lancelot. I would not stop talking about it and was genuinely upset. I was quite young when my extraordinarily low tolerance to infidelity developed. It has remained one of those things that is just never okay and it would take immeasurable strength for me to forgive. That being said, the title of this book immediately raised my hackles.

The story is about a new wife, blissfully happy in her career and marriage, who encounters an ex on a busy New York City street. As you might guess, the ex does not immediately go away and is interested in his former flame. So, much to my chagrin, the new wife must resist temptations she has to leave her “perfect” life and relent to her desires and lusts.

I read this book while I was traveling, ironically when I was marooned in La Guardia Airport due to tornadoes in Queens, and had to put it down when the stress of “will she cheat or not” was compounding my circumstantial travel stress. However, I reopened the pages on my flight back home, with a renewed hope in Emily Giffin that she would not disappoint.

I will not tell you the result, but I will say that this book was a great story and an enjoyable read. I like Giffin’s style and hope that Kimberly will send me more of her books!

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