Maybe in Another Life by Taylor Jenkins Reid
Maybe in Another Life. Finished 3-16-17, rating 4/5, fiction, pub. 2015
Unabridged audio read by Julia Whelan. 9 hours 10 minutes.
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? from Goodereads
I’ve been listening to this book in the car for over a week and this morning I finally caved and bought a cinnamon roll and ate the whole glorious thing. Hannah loves cinnamon rolls and cinnamon rolls were mentioned a lot by pretty much every character throughout the book even til the very last pages. This is not a complaint but a warning. If you listen to someone talk about cinnamon rolls enough you will find one to devour. Just sayin’.
We meet Hannah at the beginning of the book as she moves back to Los Angeles. She’s a bit of a mess, but through her best friend Gabby’s eyes we see Hannah for the loved and loving woman she is. When she meets up with an old boyfriend on her first night back Hannah must choose to stay with him or leave with Gabby. The stories then go from there.
In the next chapter she goes home with Gabby and disaster strikes. The chapter after that she goes home with Ethan and a love is rekindled. The storylines alternate by chapter so that you are never too long in one that you’ve lost interest in the other. Knowing this is how it was set up I thought for sure I’d hate it. I didn’t.
There were many ways this could have ended and Reid teased them all. I probably would have preferred a different ending, BUT I liked it. Are our lives decided by fate or do we make our own decisions? If we make a choice will fate keep bringing us back to a preordained life? This book was fun and though provoking. I’m looking forward to going back and reading her earlier books.
This made lots of best of lists when it came out a few years ago and I can see why.