Love the One You’re With Review
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Abridged Audiobook: 4 CDs (5 hours)
Read by Kathleen McInerney

Anyone who’s been married for more than a week or two will tell you that marriage isn’t easy. It takes hard work and commitment—and, still, no matter how much you love your spouse, there will always be obstacles and challenges along the way.

For Ellen, in Emily Giffin’s Love the One You’re With, Leo is her first big obstacle.

Just one passing glance—that’s all it takes to send Ellen’s whole world spinning wildly out of control. It’s a rainy day in New York City—and, as she’s walking across the street, she catches a glimpse of her ex-boyfriend, Leo, for the first time in eight years.

Before that glance, Ellen’s life had been perfect. She and Andy had just gotten married, and they were settling into their Happily Ever After. But when she sees Leo again—and, later, when she hears his voice on the phone—she’s flooded with old memories and old feelings that never really died.

At first, it’s innocent enough—just a glance…a phone call. But then Leo offers Ellen her dream job—and, at the same time, things with Andy start to falter. And Ellen begins to wonder if she’s made the right choice.

Though it may come dressed in fluffy chick lit clothing, Love the One You’re With is often an uncomfortable book to read (or, in my case, listen to)—because it’s so brutally honest. It’s hard to set aside years and years of baggage—old loves, hurts, and insecurities—and make a life-long commitment to someone. And Giffin handles the topic thoughtfully and truthfully—in a way that contemporary romances rarely do. The answers are never easy—and the outcome is never really certain.

Unlike many contemporary heroines, Ellen is far from perfect—and her faults are deeper (and more serious) than neglecting to tell her husband about the expensive boots that she bought (even though he told her not to). She does some pretty stupid things—things that will make you cringe. But, at the same time, you might understand. You might just be able to relate (even though you won’t really want to).

The story has been abridged for the audio version, but it doesn’t feel as though anything’s missing. In fact, the characters and their situations are developed better than they are in some full-length books.

Love the One You’re With isn’t as fluffy as the usual work of chick lit—so, if you’re looking for a light and brainless way to pass the time on your way to and from work, you might want to look elsewhere. But this romantic drama is still both entertaining and thoughtful. It’s a challenging but sincere novel that’s sure to remind you once again why you love the one you’re with.

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