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Heart of the Matter
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Showing 1-9 of 9 reviews(5 star)show all reviews
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
TOP 500 REVIEWERon May 21, 2010
I've loved Emily Giffin's books since I first picked up "Something Borrowed". "Something Blue" quickly became my favourite book of hers, and "Love the One You're With" and "Baby Proof" were good, but not as good as I had hoped. However, "Heart of the Matter" is, in my opinion, her best book to date. The subject matter is not as light as her previous books, but the depth of emotion and the skill with which she writes is incredible.

I'm going to be deliberately vague when describing this book, since the publisher's description is as well. Part of what made this book so compelling was discovering the various details of the plot on my own, and not having someone spoil it for me ahead of time. What I will say is that "Heart of the Matter" is written from the viewpoints of two very different women: Tessa Russo is the mother of two young children and married to a skilled pediatric surgeon. She has recently quit her job so that she can stay at home and focus on being a mom, but her decision has left her with a vague dissatisfaction. Valerie Anderson is a single mother to six-year-old Charlie, as well as an attorney. She's fairly satisfied with her life, but can't shake the feeling that something is missing. One night the lives of these two women intersect, and nothing will be the same for them again.

As I mentioned, "Heart of the Matter" is one of Emily Giffin's best books to date. She conveys such emotion with her words- at parts of the book I literally gasped out loud, finding it almost painful to continue reading the story. I felt as though I was experiencing the things that the characters were; that's how involved I was.

Giffin also takes a difficult situtation, one where there is not a wrong or a right answer, and tries to present two views without ever choosing sides. Women will sympathize with both main characters despite themselves. I had a favourite viewpoint, given the choices I've made in life, but towards the end I felt sympathy for the other character as well. Now that's powerful writing!

It's hard to review a book and remain vague, but I really don't want to give anything away. Giffin takes a story that has been done before and adds a fresh spin to it, resulting in a compelling read that you'll think about even after you've read the last page. In short: I loved it, and highly recommend it to any woman, even those who are not fans of Giffin's previous work. "Heart of the Matter" takes things to a whole new level.
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon April 7, 2011
OK - I have to say - not what I expected at all. From reading the book flap I thought I was getting one of those heart-wrenching stories about dying children and heart transplants. I was wrong. When I started this blog, I made myself a promise to avoid spoilers as much as possible. Because of that promise, I'm not going to tell you what I was wrong about. Sorry.

Heart of the Matter is written, in alternating chapters, by two women, Tessa and Valerie. It is the story of how their lives intersected one day in a tragic way and the fallout of bad choices and emotional decisions. That's all you get for story line.

Despite being thwarted in my expectations, I was moved by the reality of the book. It was one of those books where, when I had to put it down, I wondered what the characters were up to in my absence. As if they were real and I was somehow watching their lives through a magic window that allowed me into their thoughts and emotions. It was a compelling book. I have to admit that I started to get worried about 2/3 of the way into the book, that I would be horribly disappointed in the ending. Then I moved on to the thought that there was no way to end the story well. The ending was going to be bad! Having finished the book, I can tell you that I was, once again, wrong. The ending was deeply satisfying.

This was my first Emily Griffin book, it won't be my last!
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I have read all of Emily Giffin's books. Something Borrowed was easily my favourite, and I think that is in part due to the fact that I have never really been able to see both sides of a story so clearly. To feel for both characters in the conflict equally, and to inhabit their minds, is quite a feat. Emily Giffin does this again in Heart of the Matter.

Tessa is married to a successful and handsome plastic surgeon. Valerie is a lawyer, raising her son alone. When Tessa's husband meets Valerie, an irreversable event occurs, and it is to us, the reader, to witness the resolution for these two women. Each chapter focuses on one woman at a time, from their POV.

I found after the first couple of chapters, I was riveted. I am anxiously awaiting the next novel, and the book tour isn't even over yet for Heart of the Matter.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on July 20, 2011
This book really tugs at the heartstrings! While I could most certainly identify with Tessa, I also found myself feeling for Valerie. This book put me on an emotional rollercoaster and I couldn't get off until it was finished! One of her best books, by far!
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on August 10, 2010
This is the first book I've read by Emily Giffin, and I was pleasantly surprised by the quality of her writing. Infidelity is a difficult subject to write about, and this author does so with insight and compassion for both sides of the issue. This is a well-written, thought-provoking story, and it was a book I found difficult to put down. I will certainly recommend it to friends and and I look forward to reading more from this author.
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on October 7, 2013
After reading almost all of her books I must say that I very much like Emily Giffin style of writting. Heart of the matter been one of my favorite book from her. It's light but deep all at the same time; a style that Emily Giffin knows how to achieve. But it goes beyond what we expect from a chick lit book ; with a serious subject and interesting psychology of characters. I loved the children input too. A must read.
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on April 19, 2011
I love Emily Giffin and this book did not disappoint. I read it in 4 hrs cover to cover and can't wait for the next one.
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on October 11, 2014
Emily is one of my fave authors! I absolutely loved this book. I can totally relate to the story. 😃
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on December 3, 2014
A+
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