#BookReview: First Comes Love by Emily Giffin

first comes loveAbout the Book

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 delicate bond splinters.

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 is assigned to 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 that they need each other more than they knew—and that in the search for true happiness, love always comes first.


I listened to this as an audiobook via Audible, and to say first I thought the narration was fantastic. Emily Giffin has been a favorite author of mine since I read Something Borrowed, and I always finish her books feeling moved. First Comes Love was no exception to that. Josie and Meredith, while sisters, were two complete opposites but very interesting to read about. Josie’s quest to become a mother I thought was super intriguing, and Meredith’s marriage and family life really took a turn near the end, and that made it hard to put this book down. The tragedy that occurs in the beginning is their brother Daniel dying in a car accident, and the fifteenth anniversary of his death is approaching. As the story unfolds, we learn more about the sisters and their lives, but also Daniel and the night he died – and a secret that has been hidden throughout the years.

This book made me very emotional across several scenes, and was beautifully written. This is quite the complex story, and the ending was actually difficult to read at times because of how deep it got. It was interesting, because while I liked both sisters and getting to know them, I didn’t feel a deep pull for either. Usually with dual POVs I gravitate more toward one of the characters, but that didn’t happen with this one. It didn’t totally knock me out of this book though, and I think the strong writing and moving story had a lot to do with that. While this isn’t my favorite read from Emily Giffin, it was still very good and I would recommend.

4 stars

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