A Pleasant Surprise from Emily Giffin

Emily Giffin
I've read several of bestselling author Emily Giffin's books and never considered them "good." I love a light, quick read, and her books fit the bill, but almost always induce several affectionate eye rolls from me before the last page is turned. But her latest, "Where We Belong," kept my eyes firmly on the page and out of the back of my head. I can unapologetically say I liked it.
The story is written from alternating points of view - that of Marian, a high-power New Yorker who gave up a daughter for adoption eighteen years ago and never told anyone, and Kirby, her now eighteen-year-old daughter, who, by finding her, forces her to reexamine her life and her choices. The story also alternates between the events of the present and the memories of the past.
Giffin does a great job of switching between voices, capturing that of a modern teenager's especially well. When Kirby, the daughter, starts a shy romance with a boy, the dialogue is touching in its realness - refreshing for those who get sick of reading flirtatious banter that's so clever it's cheesy. Kirby's character also manages to thrive through the book by not being dramatized as the manic pixie dream girl so many authors favor for their female (especially teenaged) characters.
The emotional parts of the book that explore the relationships between each of the characters are extremely poignant. I usually pride myself on not falling prey to the emotional traps of "chick lit" but because the relationships in this book are so relatable and are mostly non-romantic, they really did surprise me with their strength.

"Where We Belong" is not literary in nature - I'd still consider it a light and fast read. But it still feels just a little different, and a little reminiscent of author Melissa Bank.  I'm happy to say that I didn't visualize the book as a typical romantic comedy, starring Katherine Heigl and Vanessa Hudgens as mother and daughter, respectively. Rather, I saw a real story with real characters and good acting, maybe say, by Charlize Theron and Ellen Page. If you've ever been turned off by Giffin before, now's the time to give her another chance.

If your status is Confirmed Registration, your spot for the event is confirmed.

If registration for this event is full, you will be placed on a waiting list. Wait listed registrants are moved to the confirmed registration list (in the order of registration) when cancelations are received. You will receive an email notification if you are moved from the wait list to the confirmed registration list.

6.012 Patron-Generated Content

The Library offers various venues in which patrons can contribute content that is accessible to the public.  These include, but are not limited to, blogs, reviews, forums, and social tagging on the Library’s website and catalog.  Any instance in which a patron posts written or recorded content to any of the Library’s venues that are accessible to the public is considered “patron-generated content” and is subject to this policy.
By contributing patron-generated content, patrons grant the Library an irrevocable, royalty-free, worldwide, perpetual right and license to use, copy, modify, display, archive, distribute, reproduce and create derivative works based upon that content.
By submitting patron-generated content, patrons warrant they are the sole authors or that they have obtained all necessary permission associated with copyrights and trademarks to submit such content.
Patrons are liable for the opinions expressed and the accuracy of the information contained in the content they submit.  The Library assumes no responsibility for such content.
The Library reserves the right not to post submitted content or to remove patron-generated content for any reason, including but not limited to:
  • content that is profane, obscene, or pornographic;
  • content that is abusive, discriminatory or hateful on account of race, national origin, religion, age, gender, disability, or sexual orientation;
  • content that contains threats, personal attacks, or harassment;
  • content that contains solicitations or advertisements;
  • content that is invasive of another person’s privacy;
  • content that is unrelated to the discussion or venue in which it is posted;
  • content that is in violation of the Library’s Code of Conduct or any other Library policy