All We Ever Wanted

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 27 Aug 2018

Member Reviews

I was able to read this book as an advanced copy.  While it’s a very easy read, the story moves very smoothly, I found myself not liking the characters very much.  The novel definitely deals with difficult and very relevant topics, like consent. I finished in a day but again did not enjoy it as much as other Emily Griffin novels.
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I'm not sure what I expected, but this book was not like the other Emily Giffin books I have read in the past.  Not to say that I didn't enjoy it, because I did.  It just wasn't what I expected.
As a new mother to a baby boy, I couldn't help thinking about what I would do if I were in Nina's shoes.
Thought-provoking, timely and emotional, All We Ever Wanted was definitely worth the read.
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I was a big fan of Something Borrowed-way before the movie came out- and Something Blue, but I just couldn't get into this one. I think it is more of a me thing than an author thing. My tastes have drastically changed since I read this, may years ago. I tried to start this one, many times and couldn't get farther than several chapters. I had set aside in hopes to try it again, but I think if I haven't progressed any further in this amount of time I will call it quits. Thank you for the opportunity, though! 

I won't be posting a review for this anywhere as it wasn't the author's fault my tastes have changed. 

Also, I only clicked the one star rating as your program makes me choose something.
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This was my first Emily Giffin novel (I know, a bit slow to the party for this particular author), and I thoroughly enjoyed this book! 

Nina Browning, continues to adjust to being a part of Nashville's elite, after marrying her tech mogul husband, with small town, middle class roots, she sometimes questions the importance of the values being bestowed her son, whom will soon be headed to Princeton. 

Meanwhile Tom, a single dad to Lyla, who has received a scholarship to the same elite private school that Nina's son is currently enrolled, struggles to keep with the financial pressures associated with "Keeping up with the Jones". 

After an unfortunate drunken incident amongst teenagers goes viral, Nina & Tom are forced to navigate the parenting of their children raised in very different situations. 

This was a well written novel, easy to read, and I finished it super fast. Another great option for the Christmas holiday period where you may find yourself with some free time. You would enjoy this if you like The Not So Perfect Mother by Kerry Fisher, or When Life Gives You Lululemons by Lauren Weisberger.

**I received this book from Netgalley for the purpose to read and provide an unbiased review.
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A complex drama that will resonate with teens and parents as it delves into issues of privilege, social media, and values. What happens is something that can happen all too easily these days but is a nightmare for those involved. A little poor judgment here, a cellphone picture there... What do the teens do now? And what do their parents do about it? Depends on the parent, of course. Decency or Princeton--which would you choose? Makes you think.

Thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for providing me a free e-ARC of this book.
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I have always been a fan of [author:Emily Giffinand have read numerous books by her so going into All We Ever Wanted I had high expectations. Giffin did not let me down.

Imagine you have a son who is basically perfect in your eyes. (Maybe you actually have said son.) Well imagine that your little boy is accused of sharing a picture that contains a half naked girl with a racist caption. What would you do? What would you think? 

Nina's son Finch has been accused of doing just that. 

The chapters alternate between Nina, Finch, Lyla (the girl in the picture), Lyla's dad Tom, and Nina's husband Kirk. The various view points was a phenomenal idea on Giffin's part because it made you continuously question who was telling the truth.

Sexual assault/harassment has been front and center in the recent news thus this plot could not be more relevant. There are so many different topics that are weaved throughout and are wonderfully done. It will hit you hard. I feel confident enough to say that much.
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I received an ARC of this book from NetGalley in exchange for my unbiased opinion.

Lyla Volpe is a sophomore on a scholarship at Windsor Academy in Nashville.  One night at a party, she passes out from drinking too much.  Finch Browning takes a semi-naked picture of her with a racist caption and sends it to a few friends.  From there, the picture spreads like wildfire through the Windsor community.  Lyla's dad, Tom, is a carpenter and is furious that the wealth and privilege seem to be shielding Finch from the consequences of his action.  Nina, Finch's mom, despairs that her son could have done something so heartless and cruel.  She thought she had raised Finch better than that and worries that her husband has taught Finch that their family wealth makes him entitled to do whatever he wants.

I think this is my favorite of Emily Giffin's books to date.  Nina was in such a tough position; I don't know what I would do in her shoes.  If I were in Tom's position, though, I would have wanted to go to the police about the situation; never mind waiting to see what the school would do.  I liked that we got to see the story from multiple points of view.
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All we Ever Wanted by Emily Griffin. Sometimes having the internet allows people to do things they might not have ever thought of doing. At times the story was very sad what people do to other people with the internet. Having money and privilege  does not make you better than people living in poverty. You definitely feel with the people in the story.
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I think I want to give this book more of a 3.5 star rating, but ultimately rounded up because Emily Giffin definitely knows how to string a story together.

All We Ever Wanted is an extremely prevalent story in this day and age where that line between right and wrong is many shades of gray.  This story rounds up many issues facing married couples with kids - honesty, possibly unfaithfulness, unhappiness with life's decisions, raising kids to make the right decisions, how to handle controversial situations a teenager may have found themselves in, bullying, sexual harassment.

There's a lot going on here.  And if I walked away with anything after reading this book, it's that no one really knows the right answer when it comes to tough situations.  Do what you can to make your kids feel safe and loved but remember they have a lot more say in their own lives than we want to accept as parents.
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This book was so good and I love Emily Giffin. Nina Browning thinks she has the perfect life and marriage until the day her son makes a mistake that will impact their lives and the lives of Tom Volpe and his daughter, Lyla. 

I was on this emotional rollercoaster with Nina and Lyla. Feeling the impacts just as it hit the characters. 

I highly recommend this book and can't wait for another one by this author.
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This is a review of ARC provided by NetGalley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

I'm not sure how to feel about this book.  I've never read any thing by Emily Giffin before, but I know that she is a bestselling author and that her other books usually fall into the romance/beach reads categories.  "All We Ever Wanted" does NOT fall into those categories, so if you are a fan of Giffin, don't be surprised.

What I liked:
 - That the story did manage to keep me on my toes about what was the truth.
 - That Nina wants her son to be punished if guilty.
 - The idea of redemption or empathy/regret.  That's something we seem to be lacking these days.
 - Tom and Lyla.  I liked the characters themselves and loved their strong relationship.
 - The setting.  I'm a Tennessee gal, so I tend to be a little biased towards books set in my state.

What I didn't:
- Nina, herself.  I didn't hate her, but she seems so clueless.  And she is so weak in her relationship with her husband.  That being said, when she finally stands up for herself, I was like "YES!"
 - The pacing can unsteady, and the big time jump in the end is jarring. 
- The chemistry between the characters sometimes feels forced.

Overall, it's not a bad book.  In fact it's pretty good.  But it's not great.  

I do have to thank the author for one thing, though.  I like to vacation in the Bristol area, which is Nina's hometown.  I had seen the restaurant Cootie Brown's when driving around Bristol, but hadn't eaten there before.  But after reading the part of the book where Nina and her friend eat there, I knew I had to try it.  OMG!  So tasty!  Thank you for the heads-up, Emily Giffin!
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Why does summer fly by so fast? If you need a good vacation book or you just want to escape for a few hours at home, this month’s Book Report has some great reads for you.

Author Emily Giffin’s novel “All We Wanted” will resonate with anyone raising children in a world where social media impacts nearly everyone. Nina Browning leads a charmed life. She and her husband, Kirk, are part of Nashville’s elite, living in a mansion, attending countless galas and raising their teenage son, Princeton-bound Finch.

The perfect veneer cracks when Finch takes a photo of Lyla, a young woman who had passed out drunk at a party. When the photo goes viral, the lives of Finch and Lyla, and their families, are turned upside down.

Lyla is being raised by her single father, Tom, and her mother occasionally pops in to wreak havoc. Tom is a working-class guy, and he is infuriated by what he sees as the wealthy getting away with bad, possibly criminal behavior.

Giffin could have taken an easy way of out the story, but she digs deeper and writes a compelling story about money, privilege, class, social media, the treatment of women and the values we teach our children.
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I received a netgalley of All We Ever Wanted by Emily Griffin, in exchange for an honest review. Princeton bound Finch has his whole life ahead of him. His mother, Nina, is worried that he may be too privileged and not ready for the real world. One night at a party Finch does something that is wrong and harassing to Lyla. The parents of both children, from vastly different backgrounds try to grapple with the fallout. This book shows the dangers of social media and what can be construed as misconduct by varying opinions. I feel it sheds the light on what our children should be conscious of these days and the consequences they can have. I enjoyed the book and recommend.
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This is one of those books that people should read, uncomfortable though it is. Unfortunately, I didn't love it. Nina felt self-serving in too many ways. She made excuses for her life, her son, everything. I just couldn't like her even though she did the right thing in the end. And it was hard to relate to her life. Who can feel for someone living a life of luxury?

Still, anyone with teenaged children will find this interesting and worth a read.

*ARC via netgalley*
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Emily Giffin delivers another great read. Told from three different point of views, All We Ever Wanted deals with real life topics. I love reading books by this author and this one definitely did not disappoint. I look forward to reading even more by her.
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This book was so good!!! It is my first time reading anything by Giffin, and now I must read everything!  

Even though this took me a long time to finish (because life...and too much Netflix, to be honest), when I got into the story I could not put it down.  

I enjoy books with multiple POV’s and this one was executed beautifully.  

Thank you to NetGalley, the author and publisher for providing me with a free copy of this book.
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This is a well written book dealing with high school age kids, parties and social media. The main characters are Finch (who’s father has made a fortune when he sold his company) and Lyla who lives with her hard working father. Both have been accepted at a prestigious prep school. Finch invites his friends to a party at his house while his parents are away. Needless to say there is alcohol involved-enough so that some of the girls pass out and the boys take pictures of them in various states of undress. Once those pictures get passed around things get ugly. Finch’s father thinks that bribery will make this go away because he doesn’t want Finch’s acceptance to Princeton to be jeopardized while his mother wants to do what’s right. Lyla’s Dad is livid and wants to exact retribution on behalf of his daughter. This is the basis of the story but the real story is how the parents and their children make decisions that will affect themselves going forward. An interesting, thought provoking read.
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Only things were actually far from perfect. Because at virtually that very moment, our son was across town, making the worst decision of his life. 

All we ever wanted is wanting the best for your kids, your family. But what happens when everything you have done for your child turns on you. That your son is not what you raised him to be. That the life you are living is sucking everything that is good. Nina Browning received the worst phone call that turned her life into a nightmare. A picture of a young girl in a compromising position with a racist remark posted. It is this picture that causes two families to collide. Where values are questioned and the value of a person has no regard.

I appreciated this mother's struggle as she is faced with the reality of sexism and racism in her own son. How she reconciles her past to her marriage that is coming apart at the seams. 

A father who struggles to place value on his daughter that has been exploited in the worst way and how she sees nothing wrong. 

The narration is 3 part. Nina who appears to have everything. The marriage, the house, and the son who is going to Princeton. Thomas, a single father who works hard and is available to his daughter emotionally. His insecurities and the loss of his marriage. Lyla who never really knew her mother and rolls her eyes as her father gives her the third degree. She is now attending a private school that will give her the education that both her and her father want. But at what cost?

Based on what is happening in our culture without the political demonizing that puts people at polar opposites. It is about a mother who desires for her son to value others and her fight for that desire.

A Special Thank You to Random House Publishing and Netgalley for the ARC and the opportunity to post an honest review
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I've always like Emily Giffin's books, though I haven't read one in several years. I was able to finish this very quickly. I find most of her writing very, very smart. Thanks to Netgalley for giving me a copy of All We Ever Wanted!
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**Thanks to NetGalley for allowing me to review this title.**

This is another one of those books that jumps between characters. We have Nina, a rich housewife who is becoming increasingly unhappy with her life. Tom, a single dad who works as a carpenter. And Lyla, she is Tom's daughter and goes to a ritzy private school on an academic scholarship.

It's just an amazing journey of discovery and truth. The fact that so much of this has to do with the line between sexual assault and harassment that is such a part of our current culture made it really speak to me.

I think so many of us women have dealt with this in one way or another, and will relate to the characters in this story. And it may be a trigger to some, so be warned. I found parts of it difficult for myself to get through. It made me feel so very sad for far too much of it. I think the incredibly unhappy marriage didn't help.

That being said, I still found it an engaging and important read. I don't regret it and it truly is a well written book. One of Emily's better ones.
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