As much as I love a good dystopian young adult novel or a true crime nonfiction story, every now and then I enjoy reading a piece of fiction that reads like a romantic comedy. You know, the kind of book you don’t have to think about when reading? Every once in a while I like to get caught up in a pointless feel good story.
Recently for book club we read “The One and Only” by Emily Giffin, and I was excited to do just that. If you don’t know who Emily Giffin is, that means you missed out on one of my favorite feel good love stories “Something Borrowed”. While I love the charm and humor in Giffin’s first novel, I felt that a lot of what I loved about her writing is missing in “The One and Only”.
This book centers around Shea Rigsby, a football enthusiast living and looking for love in the small town of Walker, Texas. Shea loves everything about her hometown, but her favorite thing about Walker is the football team that she works for—that is until she finds true love.
Through the course of this book we see inside of Shea’s insecurities and “daddy issues,” which I think is a real strength in Giffin’s writing. She knows how women think, and she conveys it well. We all have insecurities and weaknesses, and Giffin portrays a woman’s flaws in a comical, yet real way.
While the idea of “daddy issues” doesn’t really resonate with me personally, I have known a lot of girls in my life who have the same problems internally that Shea deals with in the book. My problem with the book, however, is that I don’t think she deals with these issues in a healthy way.
I honestly read this book in one setting because it was an easy, interesting read—until about three-fourths of the way in when it got weird. I don’t think anyone in my book club was one hundred percent comfortable with the way this one ended.
“The One and Only” was a great book club choice, because it opened us up for some interesting discussions. However, I still wouldn’t recommend this book. It wasn’t that bad, I just didn’t like the ending. An ending can ruin a whole a book for me.
Not to mention, there are definitely far better romantic novels out there—some even by Emily Giffin herself that hit the mark where this one didn’t.
In my opinion, “The One and Only” made one huge flaw that cost the book its greatness. You’re supposed to leave a cute romantic fiction book with a smile on your face. This one, instead, will just leave you scratching your head.