Something Borrowed by Emily Giffin

Something Borrowed by Emily Giffin

Review by Shwetha H S

Genre: Chick lit, Romance, Drama.
Imprint: St. Martin’s Griffin, New York.
ISBN: 978-0-312-32119-2

Though Emily Giffin has written many novels, her more famous work is Something Borrowed. It was not only a bestseller, but all was made into a major movie with minor changes to the storyline and characters.

Rachel has turned thirty and is still single contrary to her dreams and hopes of being settled by this age with someone who loves her and whom she loves in return. Her best friend Darcy is getting married in a few months. The fiancé is Rachel’s classmate and friend Dexter. In inebriated state and in absence of Darcy, Dexter and Rachel have sex and try to forget it later only to find out that they both like each other. Rachel is surprised to find out Dexter has always liked her but was discouraged by her own indifferent and casual behaviour towards him. Now that they both know the truth and love each other, the only obstacle in the path is Darcy who wants everything her way and likes to put up a show for everything everywhere. Dexter hinders from breaking the engagement but also doesn’t leave Rachel to be on her own. On consultation and persuasion of her good friends Hillary and Ethan, Rachel decides to leave Dexter to be his coward self and goes to meet Ethan in London as she is also fed up of being Darcy’s sidekick since childhood. What does Dexter do now? Does Rachel’s life change in London? Does Darcy turn out to be a better person or stay the shallow ever? Read the book to catch up on the lives of these friends.

Something Borrowed dwells on the ethics of friendship, moral dilemma and seeking happiness for self. It does feel dragged at places but it can be justified as it helps in showing the reader the mindset of Rachel. Since the story is both in book and movie forms, the comparison can be made. There are minor changes in the movie compared to the book. For example, in the book Darcy is dark haired and is wearing a red dress for Rachel’s birthday party, but in the movie she is blonde and is wearing a white dress. In the movie, the characters Hillary and Ethan are merged in one character that is Ethan. In the book Ethan is already in London as the story begins, but in the movie he moves to London later. Nevertheless, both book and movie are good. But for the first time, being a reader, I felt the movie was better than the book. Go for either of the forms of storytelling. You will like Something Borrowed.

Gideon and the Crimson Samurai by Ricky Baxter

Gideon and the Crimson Samurai by Ricky Baxter

Review by Satish A G

“One of the most beautiful qualities of true friendship is to understand and to be understood.”
In this book, we get to know the exact meaning of the above quote. The whole book, with all the characters revolving around “friendship” and the different ways of expressing it in their own style. Being friends just does not mean being there during times of happiness or supporting during hard times. It also means showing the right direction or pointing out the mistakes and help to set them right. Friendship is hence one of the biggest strengths to everyone when you have a “good friend” to be with you always.
The beauty of the narration here is the subtle nature of describing the individual’s behaviour and thoughts towards others. Though the whole theme revolves around two characters – Gideon and Kibishi, the Crimson Scarf Samurai – other characters are also justified, which makes it even more entertaining. The reader will want to know what happens next to each character, and not just the two main lead characters. Also, each one of them varies so much from others, which makes the readers to introspect deep down within themselves as to which character they would represent.
The other thing that is a highlight of the entire narration is the emotional bonding or the personal relationship that develops not only amongst the characters, but also among readers. We tend to become one with the story. Couple of instances like – when Jill asks Gideon to be Kibishi’s “best friend” to survive the darkness within himself; when Kibishi departs from castle Valero without saying goodbye to Gideon – involves the readers and grips them tightly.
The first part ends at an interesting junction and also with lot of questions (as mentioned in the Afterword) – Is Gideon really “the child of Destiny”? How does Kibishi save his best friend from the situation they are in? Why did Albion pretend so far? Is Clover rally dead? Will Kenoke succeed in his “Operation Saviour”? Lot of questions remain, which have to be answered in the next book.
But, the book, in the first part, covers a lot of ground and sets the context nicely. The foundation has been laid to build a wonderful mansion going forward. The readers will be waiting to know what happens next, including us.