In Emily Giffin’s seventh novel, Shea Rigsby has known one thing her entire life, and that is the small college town, Walker Texas, that she grew up in and her life revolves around one thing, Walker College football. Shea grew up with her best friend, Lucy, whose father is the head coach of the football team. When Lucy’s mother, Connie dies, it causes Shea to question her life and she starts to wonder, is there more to life than Walker football.
So, for me personally, this book started off slow. I think I had a hard time staying interested at first because of all the football talk and jargon. Don’t get me wrong, I like football but I don’t care about it unless it’s concerning the Houston Texans. While so much of the specific football talked bored me at times, I do like the authenticity it gave the characters.
Speaking of authenticity, Emily Giffin nailed it when it came to describing life in a small Texas town. Football is a way of life in Texas, college football, and high school football even more so. I think my favorite line in the book was the line that said “because everyone knew that there weren’t many things in Texas that barbecued ribs couldn’t fix.” This is a very true statement. Barbecue is a food group in Texas. With living in Texas, I have to say, it was very interesting reading a book that takes place in Texas. Not many books take place in Texas (at least the ones I read).
Something else I really liked about this book was when Shea started dating the Dallas Cowboys quarterback (fictional), Ryan James. Ryan and Shea were friends when they attended Walker together and started hanging out when Shea bumped in to Ryan at a Walker football game. As one of the many girls in Houston who finds the Texans defensive end, J.J Watt, cute, I liked how this story explored what it’s like to be the girlfriend of a player in the NFL. (I’m still dreaming like every other girl in Houston).
This was perhaps my favorite thing about this novel. Emily Giffin beautifully brought a light to domestic violence and how in sports, it’s not really punished. Under no circumstances, is domestic violence in any way shape or from ok. It really pissed me off when a major organization like the NFL has a chance to do something about it, to make a stance and say “no, this is not okay” and they do absolutely nothing. I love how there is awareness for that raised in this book.
I just want to make a quick note saying that you do not have to be in to football to enjoy this book. Yes, it does talk about football but this isn’t a sports book. Like Emily Giffin’s other books, this book is about relationships. It’s a character driven book and has all the things that you’d expect from one of her books.
Overall, I really enjoyed this book but there were some places that I feel that the story did drag on. Because of that, I give it a four out of five stars.
Have you read this book? Did you like it too? What’s your favorite Emily Giffin book? Tell me!