Book Review: One True Loves by Taylor Jenkins Reid *Minor Spoilers*

One True Loves by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Published: June 7th, 2016 by Washington Square Press

ISBN: 9781476776903 (Paperback)

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

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Emma Blair, a simple girl who’s parents own their own bookstore, marries her high school sweetheart, Jesse, in her twenties. They end up traveling the world together, but it all comes to a halt when she notices the kind of life her sister, Marie, lives. On their first wedding anniversary, Jesse takes a trip in a helicopter that ends up disappearing somewhere over the Pacific.

Emma quits her job and moves back home, taking over the bookstore. While she’s back, Emma runs into an old friend, Sam, at a music store. Sparks ignite, and they end up getting engaged. Emma feels like everything is starting to fall into place. That is until she receives a call from Jesse, and now she’s stuck between a rock and a hard place. Now she has to figure out who she really loves.


I have now read two books, and a novella by Taylor Jenkins Reid. This is probably my least favorite of the three, but it was still an entertaining book. I gave it four stars for goodness sake. I don’t read romance, and I think that is why I didn’t enjoy it as much. I will say that TJR’s writing has improved since this novel.

This book had me turning pages, and I finished over half the book in one sitting. It just roped me in from the beginning. The story is definitely intriguing. The issue for me was the characters. The only person I enjoyed was Sam. He was Emma’s friend from high school that she ended up being engaged to. I just felt that he had the most raw emotion out of all of them. He genuinely cared for Emma in high school, her twenties, and her thirties. He accepted her for her. I understand why he was upset about how Emma pretty much led both of them on after Jesse returned.

Emma made me so upset throughout the entire story, but I was satisfied with her choice in the end. I’m glad she wasn’t a total ditz.

Jesse is probably one of my most hated fictional human beings. He only wanted Emma for certain reasons. He didn’t love her for who she became in her thirties. He wanted to think that she would eventually go back to who she was. I just wanted to slap him every time he appeared in the story.

One little detail that made me happy was that her parents owned a book store. Obviously, I love books with my whole heart, and details like that make me giddy. Stepping into a book store is one of the best feelings in the world. It’s comforting, and relaxing. I loved that even after Emma’s parents let Emma run the store, they still wanted to come in a see customers that they have interacted with for years. If I ever ran a bookstore I would do the same thing. Connecting with another person is a wonderful feeling. I’m glad TJR could provide all of this in a three hundred page novel. It’s little, but it makes a worlds difference.

Some other tender side notes is that Emma’s nieces were deaf. I hardly read anything that involves that. Emma’s friend, Olive, is bisexual, and I think TJR handled it well.  The book didn’t focus on either of these details, but as a reader I didn’t feel left out. I thought that it was there without being a big deal, and I loved that.

I will, no doubt, end up reading all of TJR’s books. I will enjoy more than others, but that won’t stop her from being one of my favorite authors. She is a beautiful writer, and the characters are always so flawed. It helps readers relate to them better. I recommend this novel, because it is extremely fun to read. If you are interested, go ahead and give this a go!

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