Author: Kristan Higgins

On Second Thought by Kristan Higgins

Posted January 18, 2017 by Jonetta in Book Review | | 1 Comment

I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

On Second Thought by Kristan HigginsOn Second Thought by Kristan Higgins
Published by Mira on January 31, 2017
Genres: Contemporary Fiction
Pages: 480
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
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four-stars
two-flames

Ainsley O'Leary is so ready to get married—she's even found the engagement ring her boyfriend has stashed away. What she doesn't anticipate is for Eric to blindside her with a tactless breakup he chronicles in a blog…which (of course) goes viral. Devastated and humiliated, Ainsley turns to her half sister, Kate, who's already struggling after the sudden loss of her new husband.

Kate has always been so poised, so self-assured, but Nathan's death shatters everything she thought she knew—including her husband—and sometimes the people who step up aren't the ones you expect. With seven years and a murky blended-family dynamic between them, Ainsley and Kate have never been overly close, but their shared sorrow dovetails their faltering worlds into one.

Despite the lifetime of history between them, the sisters must learn to put their differences aside and open their hearts to the inevitable imperfection of family—and the possibility of one day finding love again.

 

 
Kate O’Leary Coburn is a 39-year old photographer who after four months of marital bliss finds herself a widow after her husband Nathan’s sudden death. Her half sister, Ainsley has lived with boyfriend Eric Fisher for 11 years and is excited about getting engaged only to find herself unceremoniously dumped. Surprisingly, Kate and Ainsley turn to each other for support, even though they haven’t ever had a close relationship.

 
I’m used to Higgins creating quirky, interesting characters and this story is no different in that respect. However, Kate and Ainsley’s journey through their respective heartaches is one of substance as we see their relationship with each other deepen and strengthen while coming to terms with their grief and family issues.

 
The story is presented in the two alternating narratives of Kate and Ainsley, which really worked for me as you captured contrasting perspectives of the same events. At times, I thought that some of the minutiae presented was just that but over the course of the book, it became apparent that when combined, those details were important in the character development and to the story. Both women were so different and I liked each, especially Ainsley with her kind spirit and wonderful outlook. Their insights were revealing not only about themselves but the people important in their lives.

 
I really enjoyed this story and am loving Higgins’ shift to contemporary fiction. There are definitely romantic elements in the story but they are not the primary emphasis. It’s a rich and textured exploration of family and relationships, how they influence our choices as adults. It’s a long journey (almost 500 pages) but I was sorry to let these characters go when I reached the end.

(FYI, this story is loosely connected to If You Only Knew, both set in Cambry-on-Hudson, New York.)

About Kristan Higgins

Kristan fell in love with romance at the age of 13, when she stole her grandmother’s copy of Shanna by Kathleen Woodiwiss. Much of her adolescence was spent mentally rewriting the end of Gone With the Wind. After a career in public relations and advertising, she started writing fiction when her children graced her life with simultaneous afternoon naps. She is the author of seven romantic comedies and absolutely loves her job. Mom of two great kids, wife of a heroic firefighter and owner of a very cute mutt, Kristan lives in Connecticut.


Audio Review: My One and Only by Kristan Higgins

Audio Review: My One and Only by Kristan Higgins

Posted October 19, 2016 by Anne in Book Review | 1 Comment

     My One and Only has been available in other formats but just recently became available in audio format.  I am a new but big fan of audiobooks.  The narrator, Xe Sands. was very enjoyable. I liked the intonation and flavor she gave to the different characters.  Kristan Higgins is an author I like. This book may be part of a series but I haven’t found the rest. There is insight here into human relationships and marriage issues masquerading behind romantic comedy and quirky characters.  The main characters Harper and Nick were once married. They are smart, hard-working and compassionate people. They married at a very young age with problematic family pasts which fueled the fire for their divorce. Now they meet again at […]


Best of the Series! Anything for You by Kristan Higgins

Best of the Series! Anything for You by Kristan Higgins

Posted January 4, 2016 by Jonetta in Book Review | 10 Comments

    It’s Connor’s story and up until now, he’s only been twin Colleen’s affable brother who is in the kitchen of O’Rourke’s making wonderful dishes for the restaurant. I didn’t know what to anticipate but was completely unprepared for the richness of this story. He had a history with Jessica Dunn, who was known in high school as Jessica “Does” so I was a bit leery of their relationship.   This was an extraordinary story, tackling really tough issues related to alcoholism, promiscuity and the long-term effects of fetal alcohol syndrome. Jessica was nothing like I had imagined and I developed an entirely new level of respect for her, even understanding her stubbornness with Connor. I liked him before, fell hard for this guy […]


Masterfully Done! If You Only Knew by Kristan Higgins

Masterfully Done! If You Only Knew by Kristan Higgins

Posted September 16, 2015 by Jonetta in Book Review | 6 Comments

    Jenny Tate’s marriage ended almost two years ago but she’s still hanging on as her ex-husband’s friend even after his remarriage. She’s taken dramatic steps to move on but can’t seem to make that final leap. Her sister, Rachel, mother of 3 1/2 year old triplet daughters, has the ideal life as a stay-at-home mother and is in a loving relationship with her husband, Adam. But circumstances change and has her re-examining the life she’s professed to love.   This work of contemporary fiction has to be Higgins’ finest to date. I literally could not stop reading because Jenny and Rachel became a part of me as they grappled with real-life issues. My emotions ran the gamut, alternately laughing and crying, then furious […]


If Only! In Your Dreams by Kristan Higgins

If Only! In Your Dreams by Kristan Higgins

Posted October 3, 2014 by Jonetta in Book Review | 2 Comments

Quick summary Emmaline Neal was cruelly dumped by her fiancé three years ago and now he’s getting married to the woman he left her for. She’s over him (kinda) and needs a date to accompany her to the wedding (long but credible story as to why she has to attend). Jack Holland, the town’s gorgeous good guy agrees to help her out as that’s what he does and he needs a respite from the hero worship coming from a recent, daring rescue.   Conflicts Jack’s not avoiding all the accolades just because he’s a good guy. He’s quietly suffering from PTSD resulting from that rescue as it was frightening, dangerous and emotional. So, he tries to power through it on his own and not everyone […]


Review: Waiting On You by Kristan Higgins

Review: Waiting On You by Kristan Higgins

Posted April 2, 2014 by Jonetta in Book Review | 2 Comments

  The Matchmaker gets matched!   The set up Colleen O’Rourke has a breezy personality with a witty, flirty retort for everybody. But underneath that generous heart is a serious bruise, created when the love of her life, Lucas Campbell, the only man she’s ever loved, left her 14 years ago. Now he’s back in town for a brief stay and he still takes her breath away.   The issues No one understood why Lucas left Colleen so abruptly, including her. He had his reasons but they had nothing to do with him not still loving her. Though she’s Googled him a little bit, Colleen really doesn’t know what’s happened in his life the last few years. He definitely hasn’t a clue about her life […]


Review: The Perfect Match by Kristan Higgins

Review: The Perfect Match by Kristan Higgins

Posted November 27, 2013 by Jonetta in Book Review | 2 Comments

  The set up Honor Holland hears her biological clock ticking and wants to have a child before it’s too late for her to have one. Tom Barlow is a British professor who is facing deportation unless he can get his visa renewed. He needs to stay in the country to look after his “almost” stepson and his current employer’s budget can’t handle the cost of the renewal process. After meeting, the two of them agree that an arranged marriage will allow them both to get what they want.   The issues Honor has been in love with Brogan, her good friend with benefits, since high school but he’s never going to see her as anything more. While she’s committed to her arrangement with Tom, […]


Review: The Best Man by Kristan Higgins

Review: The Best Man by Kristan Higgins

Posted March 5, 2013 by Jonetta in Book Review | 2 Comments

The one thing you can always count on in a Kristan Higgins story is you’re going to experience just about every emotion before you reach the end…and that’s with the same characters! This one is no different in that your heart breaks for Faith Holland at the outset when she’s jilted at the altar after her Jeremy Lyons, her fiancé, announces he can’t marry her because he’s gay. And, his best man, Levi Cooper, is the one that halted the wedding to make him fess up. Since they were planning to honeymoon in San Franciso anyway, Faith goes alone and ends up staying there for three years. When Faith returns home to work on a project at her family’s winery, she only plans to stay […]