Review: One True Loves by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Prepare to have your heart broken and then restored with One True Loves, a beautiful love story by Taylor Jenkins Reid. (Who many of you will no doubt know as the author of bestsellers like Daisy Jones and the Six and The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo.) Emma has experienced the cruellest of heartbreaks. She married her high school sweetheart and her twenties have been a whirlwind of adventures as she and Jesse travelled the globe. They have a lifetime of adventure mapped out--well away from the boring small town where they grew up and the expectations of their families--but that is cut short when a helicopter Jesse is travelling on crashes in the Pacific. Jesse is missing, presumed dead. For two years, Emma suffers delusions heartbreak and grief, eventually finding comfort in the small town and family that she left so many years before. Bit by bit, she builds a new, stable life for herself, eventually becoming engaged to Sam, who used to work at her parent's bookstore. Then a phone call changes everything. Jesse has been found, alive. 

Taylor Jenkins Reid tells a relatable story about a woman who, though she suffers greatly, has an opportunity to live two very different lives and relationships. There is no doubt that the loss of her husband changed Emma greatly and made her wish for something more stable, the life she has with Sam. But what happens when Jesse--still her husband--returns. Do they pick up where they left off? Can they? Emma isn't the only one whose life has been changed by this experience. And does choosing a future with Sam mean that she loved Jesse any less? Or is is possible to love two different people, at different times and live two very different lives ...

I very much enjoyed reading this one, lapping it up over the course of a day and a bit--even when I didn't mean to, I kept going back to find out more. Even though Emma's choice is pretty obvious, it is still interesting to see how things pan out for everyone concerned. And through side characters like Marie, we see how everyone can be shaped and can change due to the things that happen to them. My only complaint is that Jesse's tale of survival seems a little bit too unbelievable--I'd love to know if there was a real life case that the author based it upon. An entertaining and heartbreaking read.

Highly recommended.


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