Thursday, June 18, 2020

Review: That's Not a Thing by Jacqueline Friedland

Title: That's Not a Thing
Author: Jacqueline Friedland
Published: April 2020, SparkPress
Format: Paperback, 256 pages
Source: Publisher

Meredith Altman’s engagement to Wesley Latner ended in spectacular disaster. When Wesley lost his parents in an accident, mere weeks before the wedding date, he blamed Meredith and left for an open-ended journey to Europe, breaking off their engagement and shattering Meredith.

It was Aaron Rapp, a former Ivy League football player and baby-saving doctor who finally helped lift her heart off the floor. Now a couple of years into their courtship, Aaron and Meredith have just gotten engaged, and she feels her life is on a positive trajectory at last. As they celebrate their engagement at a new TriBeCa hotspot, however, Meredith is stunned to find the restaurant owner is none other than Wesley, the man she is still secretly trying to forget.

Now that Wesley is back in the States, Meredith is bumping into him everywhere, and he clearly still has the feels for her. Before long, she learns that he has been diagnosed with ALS, and her feelings about their past become all the more confusing. 
As Meredith spends more time with Wesley and is pulled further under his spell, she learns what kind of man her new fiancĂ© really is—and what kind of woman she wants to be.

My thoughts: This book grabbed hold of my heart and never let up. I loved everything about it and I'm so glad I decided to read it, knowing I would probably be an emotional wreck. Sometimes, you just need a book that tugs at those heartstrings.

I loved that while this book is all about the love that got away, it is also pretty thought-provoking. This book hit a little close to home for me as we had a family member pass away from ALS, so we know all to well the struggle that comes with this disease. I appreciated the way Friedland handled this part of the story and while I was not in Meredith's position myself, I could imagine had I been, I would have probably been having similar internal struggles myself.

I loved the way the story unfolds, the flashbacks at the beginning of the story, so that you slowly warm up to all the characters. I felt this was the perfect way to introduce everyone and you can't help but become completely invested with all the characters. You find yourself ending up wondering what you would do not only if you were in Meredith's position, but in each of the character's position...something I don't usually find myself doing. Usually I identify with one character, but here, I kept wondering about everyone. 

This is such an emotionally-driven, intelligent book. It covers a lot of heavy topics but you never feel overwhelmed by it. In fact, I was quite captivated by the story and wanted to see how it all unfolded. I highly recommend this book and think it would make a fantastic book club pick as there is so much to discuss. Have you read this one yet?


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