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Reviewed by Vera Pereskokova (Luxury Reading)

Eliot Gordon and her two sisters were raised by a single mother, an author who paid more attention to her writing than to the needs of her children. So while Eliot’s college boyfriend, Finn Montgomery, dreamed of riches, all she wanted was a nuclear family.

Eliot got just that, albeit a little unconventionally, when she met Grant Delaney in her early thirties. The two never married but lived as a married couple for all intents and purposes, and raised three daughters – two from Grant’s previous marriage and their youngest, Hailey, their daughter together.

Being a stepmother, a mother, and a “wife” was difficult, but it was nothing Eliot could not handle and at 38, she cherished her life. That is, until she bumped into Finn at Hailey’s post private school after more than a decade of no contact with the man she once considered to be the love of her life.

Finn is married himself with a young daughter, but does not shy away from getting reacquainted with Eliot. While on vacation with the girls, Eliot’s seemingly innocent phone conversations and meetings with Finn take a disastrous turn, with far reaching consequences that Eliot can never take back.

Although I Couldn’t Love You More by Jillian Medoff does have the familiar “the one that got away” story line, it is so much more than that. Finn’s presence is not the main point, but rather just a catalyst for other larger events. It is a story of relationships of all kinds – relationships between parents and their children, between siblings, between romantic partners – and how the people in these relationships come together at times of happiness, but also of sadness.

The cover of I Couldn’t Love You More had a quote from Jodi Picoult – one of my favorite authors – and for once, I must agree with another author’s glowing endorsement of a book. I felt that Medoff’s writing style had this wonderful descriptive quality and I quickly felt as if Eliot Gordon were a friend I’ve known for many years. There were a few slow spots when I was not sure where the story was going, but the eventual “did that just happen” moments that followed were well worth the while. It was not a quick read for me – but could be for others – simply because I wanted to fully savor each chapter and stop and digest what was happening.

Rating: ★★★★☆ 

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