Who Do You Love, by Jennifer Weiner

whodoyouloveI always enjoy a good Jennifer Weiner novel and I enjoyed reading this one even while I struggled with the basic premise of the novel. Who Do You Love plays with the idea of “soulmates,” the concept that two people are destined to be together no matter what difficulties life puts in their way. It’s a concept I’ve always been suspicious of in my personal life so I guess I question it in fiction too, even though it is such a common trope in novels.

Rachel and Andy, the heroine and hero of Who Do You Love, first meet by chance as eight-year-olds in a hospital waiting room. Years later, they meet again by chance as teenage volunteers on a Habitat-like house-building project, and from that point on their lives are intertwined. The feeling is that there’s something inevitable about them coming together as a couple, even though the issues that drive them apart are real enough and would certainly be challenging in a long-term relationship. Weiner’s writing is, as always, engaging, and Rachel and Andy are both attractive enough characters with interesting enough lives that it’s a pleasure to read about them, even if I question the novel’s message that any two people are really “destined” to be together no matter what.

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