Then Came You by Jennifer Weiner
Published July 12, 2011
This was a surprisingly refreshing book compared to all the typical YA paranormal/supernatural stuff I’ve been reading lately. I guess this is considered as a chick lit but it’s not as girly as some of the other chick lits out there. In fact, I found this book to be realistic and different as it touched on a few topics that are controversial in nature such as surrogate mothers and egg donors. Now that I think of it, I don’t think I’ve read any books regarding this topic. Obviously I knew about surrogate mothers and whatnot but haven’t gotten a chance to pick up a book about it. So I found this book to be quite enlightening and I found myself learning a lot.
The one thing I would change for this book was the lack of a timeline. There were these random time jumps between the characters that weren’t clear until either later on during that chapter or several character’s POV later. For example, I didn’t realize how much time had passed between Jules giving her egg donation to India deciding she wanted a baby to Annie actually getting it inseminated until much later on in the book. So at first, I thought that little to no time had passed but apparently it was a few years. So I think having a better time stamp would have been an improvement just so the readers could fully understand the order of things.
Out of the four characters, I liked Annie the best mainly because she wasn’t as scared as Jules was especially with the whole girlfriend situation, she wasn’t as selfish as India was and she wasn’t as self-centered and lonely as Bettina was. I mean, she was probably a little of everything but at the center of her, she was strong. Even though everyone including her husband was pretty much against the idea of her being a surrogate mother, she did what she thought was best for her family and even though she wavered, she still stuck to it. I was very impressed and quite proud of her for doing so. Especially when she agreed with her husband that they should have time apart from each other. I felt that was when she grew a backbone and became someone she could be proud of. I think her marrying at such a young age and having children didn’t allow her to fully become the woman she should have been and it wasn’t until she took a step back and took something for what she thought was right that she finally matured and grew.
As for the other ladies – there was something about each of them I didn’t like. In the beginning, I liked Jules – I found the reason why she donated her egg to be admirable and fully supported her. It wasn’t until the whole girlfriend situation that I was starting to dislike her. I felt that she was scared in a city that was very liberal which literally made no sense. It’s not like it was her family she was dealing with – it was complete strangers. To me, I didn’t get it. Isn’t it easier to act like yourself with strangers because you won’t ever see them again then with close friends or acquaintances? As for India, I thought she was all for the money in the beginning and she was until she actually fell in love. Plus the backstory for her was important since it really allowed me to find out why she became the woman she did. And then there was Bettina who was an enigma to me. She’s supposed to be your standard snobby pretty rich girl but apparently she wasn’t not that pretty and was rather depressed. There was a quote where she was basically saying she was never happy but I can’t believe that. She never felt happy at all? Maybe not when she was older but surely there was a time when she was happy when she was a child. Her parents seemed to love her.
Anyways, the one thing I loved about this book was how much each of the characters grew but instead of being so dramatic and whatnot, it was portrayed realistically. And I liked how they all knew one another later on and ended up becoming incredibly close with each other. I highly recommend this book – it gave me the feels.