August 19, 2015

If You Only Knew - Kristan Higgins

If You Only Knew book cover
If You Only Knew by Kristan Higgins
Publisher: HQN Books
Publication Date: August 25, 2015
Source/Format: BEA 2015 || ARC
[I received this book from the publisher. This in no way affects my review.]

Wedding-dress designer Jenny Tate understands the happily-ever-after business, yet somehow she's still involved in her ex-husband's life. In fact, Owen's new wife may—inexplicably—be Jenny's new best friend. Sensing this, well, relationship isn't helping her move on, Jenny trades the Manhattan skyline for her hometown up the Hudson, where she'll be able to bask in her sister Rachel's picture-perfect family life…and hopefully make one of her own. 

Her timing couldn't be more perfect, since Rachel will need her younger sister. Her idyllic marriage has just fallen to pieces in spectacular fashion after she discovers her husband sexting with one of his colleagues. Second chances aren't in Rachel's nature, but the desire for an intact family has her rethinking her stance on adultery, much to Jenny's surprise. Rachel points to their parents' "perfect" marriage as a shining example, but to protect her sister Jenny may have to tarnish that memory—and their relationship­ —and reveal a secret about their family she's been keeping since childhood.

It is no secret that I have a weakness for stories about sisters, mostly because I have two younger sisters. It is fascinating to see how authors portray the relationship between siblings; some capture it well, and others capture the ideal instead of the reality. It was the promise of an interesting sister relationship that really drew me to If You Only Knew, and it delivers on the promise in its own way. Higgins portrays the lives of Jenny, a wedding dress designer who longs for true love, and her sister Rachel, a married mother of triplets who has to deal with her husband’s adultery. 

The chapters alternate between the two sisters, telling their individual stories of love, loss and their daily lives. It was interesting to see it all unfold – Jenny’s move from Manhattan, Rachel’s discovery of her husband’s adultery, their relationship with one another and their friends and family, to name a few. These ladies have to go through some really tough situations, things that will make them question their lifestyles, choices and ideals. Higgins doesn’t gloss over the tough situations both women face, and I was swept up in discovering what would happen to Jenny and Rachel. Even though I was partial to Jenny’s point of view, both were well-written and felt authentic. 

There was certainly a good amount of sisterly moments between Jenny and Rachel, but I would have loved to see more! Still, it was undeniable that these two cared deeply about each other, and I love that Higgins captured the bond between them so well. I didn’t necessarily agree with the resolution to either story. But I did enjoy reading If You Only Knew, and can certainly see its merit as a new addition to women’s fiction.


  1. Great review, Alexa! This sounds like a book I'd enjoy.

  2. I picked this one up at BEA but haven't read it yet. I love books with great sibling relationships because I am an only child. I'm glad you enjoyed this.

  3. I haven't heard of this before but it sounds really interesting and just my kind of book. Thank you for this review :) x

    Megan /


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