Book Review: Something Borrowed by Emily Giffin

“When you are in a relationship, you are aware that it might end. You might grow apart, find someone else, simply fall out of love. But a friendship isn't a zero-sum game, and as such, you assume that it will last forever, especially an old friendship. You take its permanence for granted, whuch might be the very thing so dear about it.”

― Emily Giffin, Something Borrowed

The book Something Borrowed was written by Emily Giffin in 2005. The morality of friendships and relationships is a theme throughout the book. It discusses the pressure society puts on unmarried women in their 30s to be married as well as the discrimination against them. Something Borrowed was listed among other places on The New York Times Best Seller List and went on to become a worldwide success. The collaborative production company of Hilary Swank turned it into a movie. It's impossible not to smile, cry, and call your best friend while reading the outstanding debut novel Something Borrowed.

Synopsis from Goodreads...

Something Borrowed tells the story of Rachel, a young attorney living and working in Manhattan.

Rachel has always been the consummate good girl—until her thirtieth birthday, when her best friend, Darcy, throws her a party. That night, after too many drinks, Rachel ends up in bed with Darcy's fiancé. Although she wakes up determined to put the one-night fling behind her, Rachel is horrified to discover that she has genuine feelings for the one guy she should run from. As the September wedding date nears, Rachel knows she has to make a choice. In doing so, she discovers that the lines between right and wrong can be blurry, endings aren't always neat, and sometimes you have to risk all to win true happiness.

My reaction to this  novel...

This is the first novel I've read by Emily Giffin. Though I'd had this novel on my shelf for a long time, I just recently had the opportunity to read it while seeking for something to read under romance category. Actually, I really liked how the author wrote this book. She employed clear, engaging words that allowed readers to readily comprehend and become involved in the story. That is exactly how I felt. The moment I started the first chapter, it was like there was magic in it, which is why I couldn't stop myself from reading.

Though I appreciated the author's writing style, there are several issues and scenarios in the book that I cannot stomach. The first is just how obnoxious Rachel is. I dislike her self-pitying attitude, yet she sees herself as a saint for sacrificing many of her desires for her best friend. It was extremely aggravating, especially since she kept blaming Darcy, her best friend, for how she ended up the way she did. She seems to have two-faced personality, which I find to be quite undesirable in other people. Her and Darcy's mindsets are similar in my opinion. They both are unbearable.

This narrative strikes me as ethically repugnant. I grew increasingly frustrated with Rachel's decisions throughout the course of the story. I felt as though my heart was about to shatter because I could not believe that someone would do what she did behind her closest friend's back. If this were a case between me and my best friend, there would be no ethical dilemma because I completely disagree with Rachel's choice, even if that closest friend is as unpleasant as Darcy. There's a reason why they're called best friends. It indicates they are the finest of all your friends, therefore why does she think and act in that way toward her best friend? It is completely ridiculous. 

I found Darcy to be unlikable, but I couldn't want Rachel and Dex to be together. Although I was able to get a rough guess at the scenario in the midst of the chapter, I don't like the situation that Darcy revealed either. I'll say it again: I can't stand either of the female characters; I hate them both but I still intend to read the following book in this series. I believe it has to do with Darcy's point of view. She has a lot of room to develop as a person, therefore it may be great.

I suppose this is one of those novels that some readers will adore and others will detest completely. With romance novels, isn't that how it always is? If you prefer romantic novels but not the sort of a mind-blowing-over-the-edge story, you might appreciate this one. I enjoy the wording and the way the author helps the reader experience the scenarios, but the character's demeanor doesn't appeal to me. To those who have not yet read this book, I will still give it my highest recommendation. Despite how I felt, I still can't wait to read the second book.

My Overall Rating: ⭐⭐⭐✨(3.5/5)

“But I have learned that you make your own happiness, that part of going for what you want means losing something else. And when the stakes are high, the losses can be that much greater.”

We actually do get to decide what makes us happy. It's also true that the risks increase in proportion to how badly we desire something. Because that is where our future rests, we must learn to consider all of our possibilities and act rationally before determining what we actually want, the one we choose to possess. Because there is no turning back when we chose the things we thought we wanted and then learn they are not the ones we truly desire.

“When you’re in love, sometimes you have to swallow your pride, and sometimes you have to keep your pride. It’s a balance. But when the relationship is right, you find the balance.”

Most of us have heard the adage that says we shouldn't allow pride serve as the focal point of our relationship with someone we love. Yes, but why should that be the case? Is it not a wonderful feeling to assume that we don't need to consider pride and pain since love should have a reasonable balance? There is no judgment; only love. A balance between everything. That, in my opinion, is its core. That if you love someone, you must learn to balance your emotions toward them so that, even in the absence of assurances or pledges, your love will always bring about a balance between your sentiments. 

“This is why you should never, ever get your hopes up. This is why you should see the glass as half empty. So when the whole thing spills, you aren’t as devastated.”

In actuality, anticipation has a significant role in our suffering, particularly when it involves someone we care about. If that expectation is not fulfilled or is not meant to be fulfilled for you, it hurts so much. But, as humans, we do anticipate things, and because we expect, we also choose to be hurt and feel the pain. So, if we choose to expect, we need also be prepared to be hurt and feel the pain that comes with it.


Disclaimer: Booksreadbyhannel is not a business website. The opinions expressed here are unbiased and based only on my own feelings and reactions while reading the books I featured here in my blog. My reviews reflect my utmost sincerity. I paid for the books I review here out of my own pocket. Books provided by authors and publishers are otherwise specified.