My rating: 5 of 5 stars
At the age of twenty-nine, Hannah Martin still has no idea what she wants to do with her life. She has lived in six different cities and held countless meaningless jobs since graduating college. On the heels of leaving yet another city, Hannah moves back to her hometown of Los Angeles and takes up residence in her best friend Gabby’s guestroom. Shortly after getting back to town, Hannah goes out to a bar one night with Gabby and meets up with her high school boyfriend, Ethan.
Just after midnight, Gabby asks Hannah if she’s ready to go. A moment later, Ethan offers to give her a ride later if she wants to stay. Hannah hesitates. What happens if she leaves with Gabby? What happens if she leaves with Ethan?
In concurrent storylines, Hannah lives out the effects of each decision. Quickly, these parallel universes develop into radically different stories with large-scale consequences for Hannah, as well as the people around her. As the two alternate realities run their course, Maybe in Another Life raises questions about fate and true love: Is anything meant to be? How much in our life is determined by chance? And perhaps, most compellingly: Is there such a thing as a soul mate?
I wasn’t sure what to expect when I started this and I was a bit hesitant to start reading it, but I’m so glad I did. This book was so well written and very thought- provoking. I think it’s best to describe this book as two stories in one book. Based on one decision, Hannah can lead two very different paths in her life. While the life lived is different, key elements and other aspects of Hannah’s life remains the same such as her friend Gabby. Gabby, the constant in her life, remains constant while her love life and career take different paths. I think many stories have the theme of fate and that fate often determines our future. In this book, I feel the message is quite opposite that there really is no fate. For every decision there is a ripple effect that can change the course of our lives. There is happiness to be found in whatever path we choose and that is a really comforting thought. How can we know what our fate is? Are the decisions we make wrong? We can never know these answers, but there is hope that no matter what path we take we can find happiness in our situation. A part of me is a true hopeless romantic wanting to believe in soul mates, fate, and that there really is one special person for us. This small part of me made the ending a little bitter sweet. While I loved the two happy endings, a part of me was a little sad, holding on to the soul mate idea and wishing Hannah would end up with one person. I did love Henry but a part of me felt Ethan was her soul mate and wished for her and Ethan to always be together. Overall, the book really had me thinking about life and the decisions I make. Just like the book with Hannah, I know there were key decisions I have made that have altered my life and it makes me wonder where my life would be if I had made different choices. This books makes you realize that life works itself out and it’s up to us to find the happiness no matter where or what we do. This is a must read!!! By the way, this book will totally have you craving a cinnamon roll =)
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