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All We Ever Wanted by Emily Giffin


All We Ever Wanted  by Emily Giffin
Published in: 2019
Reviewed by: Book Worm
Rating: [★★★]

This ARC was provided by Random House UK (via NetGalley) in exchange for an honest review.

An exploration of teenage life in the social media spotlight…

Synopsis from Goodreads: In the riveting new novel from the #1 New York Times bestselling author of First Comes Love and Something Borrowed, three very different people must choose between their family and their values.

Nina Browning is living the good life after marrying into Nashville’s elite. More recently, her husband made a fortune selling his tech business, and their adored son has been accepted to Princeton. Yet sometimes the middle-class small-town girl in Nina wonders if she’s strayed from the person she once was.

Tom Volpe is a single dad working multiple jobs while struggling to raise his headstrong daughter, Lyla. His road has been lonely, long, and hard, but he finally starts to relax after Lyla earns a scholarship to Windsor Academy, Nashville’s most prestigious private school.

Amid so much wealth and privilege, Lyla doesn’t always fit in—and her overprotective father doesn’t help—but in most ways, she’s a typical teenage girl, happy and thriving.

Then, one photograph, snapped in a drunken moment at a party, changes everything. As the image spreads like wildfire, the Windsor community is instantly polarized, buzzing with controversy and assigning blame.

At the heart of the lies and scandal, Tom, Nina, and Lyla are forced together—all questioning their closest relationships, asking themselves who they really are, and searching for the courage to live a life of true meaning.

Book Worm’s Thoughts: First lets take a few seconds to just admire that cover…I love its simple understated-ness.

This book covers a lot of important issues and I felt these were handled well for the main part. Some of the characters acted or made decisions that didn’t feel real but I could overlook that for the sake of the story.

Here are some of the issues covered:
 1) The way the book looked at how school life is different for teens today with the invention of social media and camera phones the way their lives are lived out in public and the strain this puts on young people.
2) The exploration of teenage girls self worth – nude photos are accepted as something that happens and they are brushed off but is this actually setting a dangerous precedent.
3) Family dynamics – I liked that we have a single dad raising his teenage daughter the best way he knows how.
4) Social dynamic – we have a mixed race girl from a poor background finding her place in the privileged, rich, white world of a private school in Nashville.
5) Corruption – we see how having money can influence how your actions are interpreted and how you are treated by the system.
6) Morality – does having money mean you no longer have to be responsible for your actions.

Who would like this? I think this would be a good book for teenage girls to read as it has important messages about self worth and acceptable behaviour, it also has girls sticking together and I appreciate that.

We want to hear from you! Have you read this book? What did you think? 


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