On Second Thought

On Second Thought

Ainsley O’Leary is so ready to get married—she’s even found the engagement ring her boyfriend has stashed away. What she doesn’t anticipate is being blindsided by a breakup he chronicles in a blog…which (of course) goes viral. Devastated and humiliated, Ainsley turns to her older half sister, Kate, who’s struggling with a sudden loss of her own.Kate’s always been the poise...

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Title:On Second Thought
Author:Kristan Higgins
Rating:
ISBN:0373789254
Format Type:Paperback
Number of Pages:480 pages

On Second Thought Reviews

  • Mo
    Feb 03, 2017

    4.5 Stars..

    Really enjoyed this one. Kate and Ainsley have never been that close but tragic circumstances bring them together ... they realise that they do get on, they like each other, they have each other's backs.

    Loved both characters and their interweaving storyline.

    Gram-Gram - LOL. What a character!

    Of course we have the obligatory dog, Ollie.

    I think there was only one of her books that disappointed me a little but overall, she is an auto-buy and I usually end up enjoying them. Lover her droll

    4.5 Stars..

    Really enjoyed this one. Kate and Ainsley have never been that close but tragic circumstances bring them together ... they realise that they do get on, they like each other, they have each other's backs.

    Loved both characters and their interweaving storyline.

    Gram-Gram - LOL. What a character!

    Of course we have the obligatory dog, Ollie.

    I think there was only one of her books that disappointed me a little but overall, she is an auto-buy and I usually end up enjoying them. Lover her droll sense of humour.

    I know I am not saying much about it but I don't want to give too much away. Just go for for it. I bet you will love it too.

    I shed a few happy tears at the end!

  • Jonetta
    Jan 03, 2017

    Kate O'Leary Coburn is a 39-year old photographer who after four months of marital bliss finds herself a widow after her husband Nathan's sudden death. Her half sister, Ainsley has lived with boyfriend Eric Fisher for 11 years and is excited about getting engaged only to find herself unceremoniously dumped. Surprisingly, Kate and Ainsley turn to each other for support, even though they haven't ever had a close relationship.

    I'm used to Higgins creating quirky, interesting characters and this sto

    Kate O'Leary Coburn is a 39-year old photographer who after four months of marital bliss finds herself a widow after her husband Nathan's sudden death. Her half sister, Ainsley has lived with boyfriend Eric Fisher for 11 years and is excited about getting engaged only to find herself unceremoniously dumped. Surprisingly, Kate and Ainsley turn to each other for support, even though they haven't ever had a close relationship.

    I'm used to Higgins creating quirky, interesting characters and this story is no different in that respect. However, Kate and Ainsley's journey through their respective heartaches is one of substance as we see their relationship with each other deepen and strengthen while coming to terms with their grief and family issues.

    The story is presented in the two alternating narratives of Kate and Ainsley, which really worked for me as you captured contrasting perspectives of the same events. At times, I thought that some of the minutiae presented was just that but over the course of the book, it became apparent that when combined, those details were important in the character development and to the story. Both women were so different and I liked each, especially Ainsley with her kind spirit and wonderful outlook. Their insights were revealing not only about themselves but the people important in their lives.

    I really enjoyed this story and am loving Higgins' shift to contemporary fiction. There are definitely romantic elements in the story but they are not the primary emphasis. It's a rich and textured exploration of family and relationships, how they influence our choices as adults. It's a long journey (almost 500 pages) but I was sorry to let these characters go when I reached the end. (FYI, this story is loosely connected to

    , both set in Cambry-on-Hudson, New York.)

    (I received an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review)

  • Heather K (dentist in my spare time)
    Oct 21, 2016

    *4.5 stars*

    One time might be a fluke but two times? I'm in LOVE!

    with another book set in the fictional New York town of Cambry-on-Hudson. I absolutely adored my first ever Kristan Higgins book,

    , and this one was

    .

    I have a little bit of trouble classifying the genre of these two recent Kristan Higgins books because they straddle the line between women's fiction and contemporary romance. Honestly, it doesn't matter what box you put t

    *4.5 stars*

    One time might be a fluke but two times? I'm in LOVE!

    with another book set in the fictional New York town of Cambry-on-Hudson. I absolutely adored my first ever Kristan Higgins book,

    , and this one was

    .

    I have a little bit of trouble classifying the genre of these two recent Kristan Higgins books because they straddle the line between women's fiction and contemporary romance. Honestly, it doesn't matter what box you put them into because, bottom line,

    . We get the focus on family dynamics and two individual women's personal, introspective journeys from women's fiction, but we also get the heart-melting love-stories that I crave from romance.

    One of the main struggles of a romance author is to get the reader to buy into the romance. That's surprisingly hard to do, especially with "showing" instead of "telling." However,

    does it with not just one, but two characters in this book. Still, this book isn't simply about two people falling in love. It is MUCH more complex than that.

    What I loved most about this story was how nothing is perfectly straightforward. There is pain and loss, there are conflicting and confusing emotions, and people are not who they seem at first. That is because

    , especially the supporting characters, and that is what makes this book come to life. The former lovers and exes... you

    them, even when you want to simply hate them. There are no evil villains or two-dimensional characters. I loved that.

    There were also a few tropes that are weaknesses of mine, mainly the enemies-to-lovers trope. Gah, I love that one. I think a quiet, awkward man falling into love just does something to me. It reminded me a little of

    , which is never a bad thing.

    Also, I love a kooky grandma character. Gram gram was the

    .

    What impressed me even more about this story is that even when an author has great ideas, he or she still has to

    . To make a book flow smoothly and be compulsively readable is extremely difficult. However, Kristan Higgins pulled that off too, and

    This book is everything that I wanted

    by

    to be but wasn't.

    It is both heart-warming and heart-breaking while still maintaining its humor.

    Honestly, it's a must-read.

    *Copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review*

  • Amy
    Feb 23, 2017

    All of my reviews can be found on

    Every time Higgins releases a new book and I finish reading it I think, this is her best one yet, it’s my favorite, she’s topped herself again. She’s that’s good you guys, her work gets stronger and she was already extremely talented to begin with. I don’t even have to read the blurb for her novels, I’m reading it no matter what, but when I did read the blurb for this one I was thrilled. Her last book, If You Only Knew was also about sisters a

    All of my reviews can be found on

    Every time Higgins releases a new book and I finish reading it I think, this is her best one yet, it’s my favorite, she’s topped herself again. She’s that’s good you guys, her work gets stronger and she was already extremely talented to begin with. I don’t even have to read the blurb for her novels, I’m reading it no matter what, but when I did read the blurb for this one I was thrilled. Her last book, If You Only Knew was also about sisters and she has such a gift for writing about these complicated relationships with humor and insight.

    This flips back and forth from both Ainsley and Kate’s point of view, which I love, multiple narrators are my thing and Higgins does this flawlessly. Ainsley is the younger sister and she’s been dating the same guy for eleven years. She knows they’ll get married one day, but life keeps getting in the way. When she gets dumped instead of proposed to she’s shocked and humiliated. Did I mention that he chronicles this in his blog and it goes viral? Yikes. Kate is the older sister and after decades of being single she’s finally found love and married Nathan. Bliss is short though when he dies in a freak accident and she’s devastated and broken. Ainsley and Kate have never been close, but can they lean on each other when they both need it the most?

    What makes Higgins book standout to me is the amazing characters she creates. I completely related and felt a deep connection to both Ainsley and Kate and by the end I felt like they were both friends of mine. Their journeys are messy, heartbreaking, raw, honest and so very real. Besides the sisters, this book is chock full of fantastic secondary characters that you’ll both love and hate. From Eric the pompous ass who dumped Ainsley, to Daniel the Hot Firefighter and Jonathan, Ainsley’s robotic like alien boss, to my favorite, Gram Gram. She is so sassy, she’s shamelessly looking for love and not too proud to use Tinder, she cracked me up! Leo and Jenny from If You Only Knew also make several appearances and I adored checking in with them.

    Reading a Higgins book is like eating my ultimate comfort food for me, they just always make me feel warm and cozy by the end. Her books are full of so much heart, you can’t help but feel as if you’re experiencing what the characters are right along with them. If you haven’t read any of her books yet, I urge you to give them a shot. You can pick up any of them, but as I said earlier, I feel like they get better with each one, so start with If You Only Knew then try this one. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed, in fact I think you’ll discover your new favorite author.

  • Dani C. (Paulette's Papers)
    Feb 12, 2017

    I will admit the two reasons I picked up this book was the cover (I love purple tulips) and the author (I love Kristan Higgins). I didn’t read the synopsis which is not normally something I do. I just knew based on who the author is and the lovely cover that I would enjoy this book.

    I was right.

    I honestly hate books the switch between characters each chapter yet Ms. Higgins made it work. We get a chance not only to see what each sister is going through but we also see how they view their sister’s

    I will admit the two reasons I picked up this book was the cover (I love purple tulips) and the author (I love Kristan Higgins). I didn’t read the synopsis which is not normally something I do. I just knew based on who the author is and the lovely cover that I would enjoy this book.

    I was right.

    I honestly hate books the switch between characters each chapter yet Ms. Higgins made it work. We get a chance not only to see what each sister is going through but we also see how they view their sister’s own life and struggles. In the end these two not only become stronger sisters they also become more like friends. It is sad, it is sweet and at time humorous they life these two unique women live but it is all relatable. By the time the book was over I could see myself wanting to be friends with both Kate and Ainsley.

    I started reading On Second Thought on a Saturday afternoon and by 2:00 am the next morning I had finished their journey. This is one book I found difficult to put down and I think you will as well.

  • Theresa Alan
    Oct 31, 2016

    I loved, loved, loved this book. This is exactly what I like to read—women’s fiction with comedic and romantic elements. This novel delivers in every way—humor, heartbreak, complex family and romantic relationships, and characters you root for the whole way.

    In chapter one, we know that Kate’s husband will not live through the day. You would think a novel that begins with a loved one’s death—a quirk of an accident—would not be funny, but there is a lot of humor throughout this story.

    The other th

    I loved, loved, loved this book. This is exactly what I like to read—women’s fiction with comedic and romantic elements. This novel delivers in every way—humor, heartbreak, complex family and romantic relationships, and characters you root for the whole way.

    In chapter one, we know that Kate’s husband will not live through the day. You would think a novel that begins with a loved one’s death—a quirk of an accident—would not be funny, but there is a lot of humor throughout this story.

    The other thing I love about this book is that it alternates between Kate’s first person point of view and her sister’s point of view. STEPsister, as Ainsley has been reminded time and time again by her stepmother throughout her life.

    In part because Kate is several years older than Ainsley and in part because they have very different personalities, they’ve never been that close. But when Kate’s husband dies and Ainsley’s boyfriend of eleven years decides not to propose to her at long last but to break up with her, the two shattered sisters come together to help each other survive their mutual heartbreaks.

    Much of the humor comes from the character of Gram-Gram, their octogenarian grandmother who gets a Tinder account and prowls wakes to make her move on newly widowed men.

    Both Kate and Ainsley are likeable characters in their own way, and how the plot unfolds is not predictable—I hate when I can figure how things will end way before I actually finish the last page, and this book does not disappoint in that regard.

    The writing is wonderful—I definitely recommend this for fans of women’s fiction.

    Thanks to Netgalley and HQN for the opportunity to read an advance copy of this book.

    For more of my reviews, please visit:

  • Kathryn
    Jan 20, 2017

    On Second Thought by Kristan Higgins was a read that I couldn't put down. I came back to it any time I had, other things I thoroughly enjoy were put aside. I was totally hooked into this book, I laughed and at times a few tears slipped down from the sheer perfection of some of the relationships and how they worked out.

    The book is told from the point of view of two sisters. Kate the older one, not long married to Nathan has found the love of her life and is hoping for a child, until the unthinkab

    On Second Thought by Kristan Higgins was a read that I couldn't put down. I came back to it any time I had, other things I thoroughly enjoy were put aside. I was totally hooked into this book, I laughed and at times a few tears slipped down from the sheer perfection of some of the relationships and how they worked out.

    The book is told from the point of view of two sisters. Kate the older one, not long married to Nathan has found the love of her life and is hoping for a child, until the unthinkable happens and a freak accident takes him from her. She becomes the widow, encased in a grief locked inside her. Nathan's family are very much part of this story and the way the relationship with Kate develops is very interested - especially Kate's mother-in-law.

    Ainsley is the younger sister, they share the same father but not the same mother. However Candy has raised Ainsley and while Ainsley doesn't quite feel the love there, she finds a few surprises along the way. Ainsley has been in a very long term relationship with Eric, the guy with the size of an ego that blinds him. He is a total ass. Ainsley is so kind and caring and loving she hasn't really seen him for who he really is. When it all turns to custard it turns out Ainsley and Kate begin to share things never shared before and the development of their relationship is deeply satisfying.

    I warmed very much to both sisters, perhaps Ainsley a little more at first, but both of them are wonderful women, finding their way together through tough times. There extended family provide extra entertainment and Gram Gram - Candy's mother and the girls grandmother is totally incorrigible and a load of fun.

    While this book is more than romance there are a couple of wonderful guys also in the story who really 'get' the women and are there for them.

    On Second Thought was a delectable, delightful read - it hit all the right buttons for me, I was captivated by every part of it.

  • Mari
    Jan 26, 2017

    4.5 stars

    Another wonderful and brilliant book by Kristan Higgins! I've been a fan of her books ever since and was glad to hear she had a new one. Her books have certain charm to them with real people, romance and comedy that all blend together. The family dynamic explored here is complex but done with a touch of humor and lightness, along with interesting cast of characters!

    The circumstances that brought these two sisters together even closer maybe unfortunate and unexpected. Quite blindsided re

    4.5 stars

    Another wonderful and brilliant book by Kristan Higgins! I've been a fan of her books ever since and was glad to hear she had a new one. Her books have certain charm to them with real people, romance and comedy that all blend together. The family dynamic explored here is complex but done with a touch of humor and lightness, along with interesting cast of characters!

    The circumstances that brought these two sisters together even closer maybe unfortunate and unexpected. Quite blindsided really for them. But it gave them that push. Newly widowed Kate with her sadness and grief. Ainsley whose long time boyfriend dumped her. The first few parts are full of backstory and somber in tone. But you have some humor in perspective. The topic being serious still.

    Kate went through the motions as expected did the best she could. It was hard to cope, she pushed through. I get it death of a loved one is never simple, no one would wish to be widowed like that. All her life she waited tor that someone and when she got it poof along with the everything. They had their share of issues after the fact which makes it more complicated. Her in laws make it even worse I'd say, having her sister there helped and it brought them together. It's a long road ahead for her and maybe she has a second chance at love.

    I really liked Jonathan for some reason. The shy, reserved guy who was also scorned. He and Ainsley have a great dynamic. I find it kind of cute how they developed and the affection that slowly formed. He's actually a kind and good dad he has his reasons why he seemed cold and distant, quite alid ones too. Very Mr. Darcy-esque so yeah instant like for me. Aisnley is a hoot such a good positive attitude and energy always even despite her stepmother and unconventional family. Huge heart and lot of convictions which I think are qualities to admire. So they might be polar opposites but they balance out, quite sweet.

    Their stories of losing their someone and maybe hoping to find that again just warms my heart. It's really sad what happened, it makes you hope that everyone will find that light again after something terrible. On Second Thought is a charming, honest, heartwarming story about the ups and downs of life with small doses of life lessons. It days a lot about being kind to yourself without being preachy. The good old Higgins style of writing that's welcoming and feel good. Another winner and favorite!

    *** ARC generously provided by NetGalley for an honest review ***

  • Karen
    Feb 04, 2017

    This was my first Kristan Higgins book, and I absolutely LOVED it. How someone can take such a heartbreaking story and fill it with so many emotions, joy and laughter and then an ending that brought me to tears... I'm a little speechless. Great book.

  • Brandie
    Feb 25, 2017

    I'd give this book endless stars if I could. I absolutely loved every minute. It was perfect in every way!!