Some books can be easily described by the action they contain: thrillers, murder mysteries, westerns. But then there are another class of book altogether simply called novels. These narratives usually focus on the internal emotional lives of their characters. If this sounds like your kind of book this week’s Port Pick focuses on an author newish to library shelves: Emily Giffin, a New York Times bestelling author.
Her latest novel, First Comes Love, centers around two sisters, Meredith and Josie. Both are in their mid-to-late thirties and live in the Atlanta area. Meredith is a lawyer and married with a toddler, while Josie is a single first grade teacher who lives rather impulsively. The two have never been particularly close sisters, but a family tragedy splinters their already contentious, if loving, relationship. Told in a series of flashbacks throughout the story, the reader learns that the family at one time had an older brother who died 15 years earlier in an unexpected car crash. Each family member has dealt with older brother Daniel’s death differently. The sisters’ mom has become more anxious for her adult children’s safety, and their dad fell off the wagon which caused a divorce. Meredith is germ and safety obsessed, while holding a superior attitude toward her sister’s impulsive ways. And Josie has refused to emotionally move on, which explains why she is still single at 37 after dating regularly.
The chapters in the book alternate between Meredith and Josie narrating, so the reader has a clear picture of how each sister is thinking during the story. Tensions come to a breaking point when Josie announces she plans to become pregnant by a sperm donor, while Meredith starts questioning the validity of her marriage. Both sisters ultimately learn that in all relationships, love comes first.
You can get the book reviewed here and more great titles to watch, read, listen to, or play with at the Port Library at 1718 N. Hersey in Beloit. This is director Rachel Malay, saying “Thanks for checking us out!”