The New York Times bestselling author of Something Borrowed, Something Blue, and Baby Proof delivers another captivating novel about women and the choices that define them. This is the story for anyone who has ever wondered: How can I truly love the one I'm with when I can't forget the one who got away?
Ellen and Andy's first year of marriage doesn't just seem perfect, it is perfect. There is no question how deep their devotion is, and how naturally they bring out the best in each other. But one fateful afternoon, Ellen runs into Leo for the first time in eight years. Leo, the one who brought out the worst in her. Leo, the one who left her heartbroken with no explanation. Leo, the one she could never quite forget. When his reappearance ignites long-dormant emotions, Ellen begins to question whether the life she's living is the one she's meant to live.
Love the One You're With is a powerful story about one woman at the crossroads of true love and real life. (from GoodReads)
I really like Emily Giffin as a writer and I've read three of her books that I enjoyed immensely. However, I wasn't as enthralled by Love the One You're With as I wanted to be. It wasn't horrible, but Giffin's other novels have been much better.
It was hard for me to get into this book at first, but as I kept reading I liked it a little better. Giffin's books are all very similar: they're romance and so far have been about adultery. Now that's a topic that most people aren't interested in but she does a really good job of portraying the complex feelings that are often involved in these situations. For example, most people consider physical cheating to be the worst betrayal, but my AP English Lit class determined that emotional cheating was actually worse (we were reading Ethan Frome). That's sort of the theme of Love the One You're With: Ellen feels a connection with her ex-boyfriend Leo. She loves talking to him on the phone and emailing him and even though there's not much physical contact it feels like she's cheating.
The reason I didn't really enjoy Love the One You're With as much as I wish I did is because I didn't feel the connection between Ellen and Leo. I liked her husband Andy and I didn't like seeing her move away from him. Ellen was an infuriating character especially when Andy wants to move to Atlanta. She shies away from sharing her feelings and then it causes conflict in her marriage. I just didn't like the characters in this book as much as I did in Emily Giffin's other books.
Now Love the One You're With wasn't awful. I liked the relationship between Ellen and her sister. And Emily Giffin is a good writer so there were no complaints there. If you're looking for a romance novel, however, I would head for her other books first.
Rating: 7 out of 10.
2008/St. Martin's Press/342 pages.