48 pages 1 hour read

Emily Giffin

All We Ever Wanted

Fiction | Novel | Adult | Published in 2018

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Chapters 1-7

Chapter Summaries & Analyses

Chapter 1 Summary: “Nina”

Content Warning: This section of the guide discusses the novel’s depiction of non-consensual sharing of sexual photos, sexual assault, racism, alcohol misuse disorder, and attempted suicide.

On a Saturday night, Nina gets ready to attend a gala with her husband, Kirk. She thinks about how her family went from living comfortably to being wealthy. This makes her think of Julie, her childhood best friend, and Julie’s view on the “obscene” displays of wealth of other people, such as Melanie, another friend of theirs. Nina and Kirk grew up differently, and Nina recognizes that his family wealth and well-known last name contrasts with her middle-class childhood. Nina also recognizes that even though she may not have been “Kirk’s first choice on paper” her physical appearance attracted him to her, just as his “good family” attracted her to him (5).

On their way to the gala for mental health, Kirk and Nina discuss how proud they are of their son, Finch, for getting into Princeton. Nina urges herself to focus on the positive things in her life rather than fretting over anything negative. At the gala, Kirk and Nina give a speech regarding their contribution to the foundation, with Kirk doing most of the speaking.

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