Friday, December 2, 2016

Who Do You Love by Jennifer Weiner: Reshelved Books

      When I first started this book I had so many questions.  I had promised you answers, but now I wish I could take that promise back...because figuring out the answers were half the fun of reading it!  

     Who Do You Love is a coming of age novel, which encompasses the genres of both women's fiction and new adult fiction, with new adult fiction being part of the fiction genre with characters who are primarily in their 20's-30's.  This can sort of be thought of as an "older" version of the young adult genre because this book begins with the two main characters of Rachel and Andy meeting at 8 years old, and follows their growth up until their 30's, with a large amount of space devoted to their 20's. 
      So, for those who have been eagerly anticipating this review, having read our last "currently reading" post, Rachel and Andy do fall in love.  But do they marry and is he the one who broke her heart?  Yes and no.  I feel like saying more than that will spoil it for you.    
This novel reads like a mixture between a Nicholas Sparks love story and Kristin Hannah novel.  It explores love and heartbreak, both in the physical because of Rachel's genetic heart disorder, but also in the metaphorical, and for this reason, is very similar to How I Came to Sparkle Again.  However, what I think makes this novel stand out is Weiner's focus on exploring not only the difference between love and lust, but also the difference between true love / soulmates and a love out of respect and duty.  Rachel's first marriage was built on this later love.   She loved her husband, but not in the way needed for it to last.  Rachel's other love was first variety.  They were once best friends, but perhaps had met at the wrong time.  
    The ending of this novel opens with a new chapter of Rachel's life moving forward, but as I sit here reflecting on what I just read, I also wonder if Rachel is simply falling back into the comfort and her old practices.  Rachel has made a career out of social work, working with single mothers who often fall back into bad habits of drug use and domestic abuse.  Could the reopening of this chapter actually be Rachel falling back into her "bad habits," or is it genuine and real?

I am going to give this novel 4 out of 5 coffee beans! 
I'd also love for you to read this book and share with me what you think below in the comments!

~Jessica  

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