It’s interesting to read Love The One You’re With by E. Giffin (Book number 4) next to The Notebook. The stark contrast of the characters in the books and the way the story goes makes you wonder of your existence in a parallel universe. I also learned the importance of not reading chick lit back-to-back. 😯
The storytelling of Love The One You’re With is slow until halfway on the book. It is about Ellen, a city rat newlywed who tries to be a decent wife but fails miserably, as she is forced to choose between the old and the new… at a time when there should’ve been no options available.
Many would say the book’s about a woman standing on the crossroads of life, and after acting like a high school girl for so long, finally makes a choice. But really, the timing for that decision is way out there. It is not just about picking a love though. It is also about picking a life.
It spirals down when she gets uprooted from everything familiar and succumbs, and later suffocates, to a life entirely of her husband: the suburbs, his perfect socialite family, snotty, pretentious neighbors and all; and an unexpected meeting with the one who got away… especially because of the unexpected meeting with the one who got away.
The tone of the book is mostly defensive and it is terribly marked by over analyzing – the kind you get when you are neurotic or lying, or both, about what matters most. It also touches self-fulfillment, passion, chemistry, commitment, disloyalty, family, security, letting go issues and settling. This is probably one of the most curious things about the book – as you shut it close, the main character makes you feel like she’s settling.
The characters are scratch-off-the-surface built. It can be difficult to relate to them, even when the author goes through the trouble of literally telling you what the characters are like. Their picture is not solid, even for the other couple main characters: Andy, the perfect, golf playing, boy-next-door husband who could have been straight out of GQ, and Leo, the dangerous, deep, passionate, artist who could have designed the GQ cover. Either they are really bland or their personalities are simply watered down by the neurosis of Ellen.
For sure I do not have to tell you how it all ended, the title blew it all off. Love The One You’re With is very desperate housewives :roll:. If you are married, maybe you’d appreciate this. If you’re single, there are thousands of other books out there.