Tuesday, January 31, 2017

(12)On Second Thought by Kristan Higgins


Thirty-niney-year-old Kate was still a giddy newlywed when her husband died. She thought she would ever get married, but here she is 102 days into her marriage to Nathan, the best man she had ever met.   They are at her sister's, Ainsley, house for a party when there is a freak accident and after 102 days of marriage,  Kate is a widow.  She is absolutely devastated and at a loss of how she goes on.

Ainsley and her boyfriend of eleven years are celebrating his beating cancer when Nathan had his tragic accident.  Shortly after Nathan's death, Eric dumps Ainsley on the night she was expecting to get a ring.  She moves in with Kate as she tries to pick up the pieces of her life.

The O'Leary sisters haven't always been close, the family history is dysfunctional, to say the least.  Their father is clueless at best and their mother has a passive-aggressive streak that is worthy of it's own book.  But it isn't until they are both healing from heartache that they really start to get to know each other.  Ainsley and Kate both have help healing, but will they ever truly be happy again?

It has been a long time since I devoured a book in one sitting, but it was easy to do with On Second Thought.    From the very beginning, I could relate to Kate because she was an older bride, like me.  I could relate to the feeling of giddiness she had as she sent him off to work in the morning.  I get it.  I was like that.   The sudden death of her beloved left her so stricken it was hard to not feel the tug of emotions. On the other hand, when Ainsley and her boyfriend split up, I practically cheered.  He was such a gigantic ass.  But Ainsley's emotions leaped off the pages just as Kate's did.  I enjoyed watching the sisters strengthen their relationship and start to emerge from their respective haze of grief.  I found myself crying the ugly cry at the end of the book - I won't tell you why - but I dare you to read it with a dry eye.

Bottom line - Kristan Higgins is such a talented author.  She has successfully made the leap from romance to mainstream women's fiction.  I so thoroughly enjoyed On Second Thought that I am " adding it to the "Best of 2017" list.  It was that good.

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I remember the carefree summer days when I used to ride my bike to the public library to pick out new books. I would go almost daily to find books to read. I read to learn. I read to explore the world. I read to escape. I read because not reading is not an option.

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