Saturday, July 11, 2015

Blog tour + Review: Maybe In Another Life by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Rating: 6 Cups of Coffee 
Goodreads' Book Description:
From the acclaimed author of Forever, Interrupted and After I Do comes a breathtaking new novel about a young woman whose fate hinges on the choice she makes after bumping into an old flame; in alternating chapters, we see two possible scenarios unfold—with stunningly different results.

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 Liferaises 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?

Hannah believes there is. And, in both worlds, she believes she’s found him.

Natasha's Experience:

I'd like to personally introduce you to my absolute favorite book -- my number one read. There are infinite reasons as to why this book has taken the top spot on my list of favorites, but having a best friend character who completely embodies what it means to be a best friend is my favorite reason why I fell in love with MAYBE IN ANOTHER LIFE.

"We were Gabby and Hannah, Hannah and Gabby, one name rarely mentioned without the other in tow."

It's said that when you like or love something, it's usually because you can see yourself in said thing. When something is relatable to a certain degree, you're more than likely going to love the familiarity that it brings. I think that's why this book completely consumed me -- it felt so familiar; it felt like home.

"Life is long and full of an infinite number of decisions. I have to think that the small ones don't matter, that I'll end up where I need to end up no matter what I do. My fate will find me."

Taylor Jenkins Reid created a story in which the main character, Hannah Martin, lives out two versions of her life in alternating chapters. It may sound confusing and hard to keep up with, but I assure you it's not. Hannah decides to move back to L.A. to live with her best friend, Gabby, while she figures out exactly what she wants out of life. One night, she goes out with Gabby and Mark, Gabby's fiance, and meets up with her ex, Ethan. You can say that Ethan was the one that got away -- Hannah's first love. The story splits up into the two different lives that Hannah will lead if she decides to stay out with Ethan as the night comes to a close, or if she decides to go back home with Gabby & Mark.

"It's entirely possible that every time we make a decision, there is a version of us out there somewhere who made a different choice."

I loved this story because it touched on a subject that I rarely think about, but am entirely fascinated by: fate. Is fate something that could be considered inevitable? Do we have any sort of control within our lives? Hannah's two decisions play out and create two lives that are polar opposites. I loved that there were certain things and people that spilled into both of Hannah's lives because it brought back the idea that some things were bound to happen to us, things that were completely out of our control.

"Life is unpredictable beyond measure."

One constant in both of Hannah's lives was Gabby, Hannah's best friend. Their friendship was exactly the kind of friendship I needed to read about -- she was exactly like my best friend, Katie. Seeing that familiarity, that sense of "wow, Gabby and Hannah are honest-to-god best friends" was amazing. I've said this before, but seriously, Reid can write one helluva best friend.

"Our lives are still the results of our choices. I'm starting to think that when we don't own them, we don't own ourselves."

This story isn't just a love story, nor is it just a story about lifelong friendship. It's a lesson that teaches you about life, the decisions we make every day, both big and small, and the effects they have on our future. It brings to light the topic of destiny and how we play a part in something that is so entirely out of our reach. I laughed, cried (a lot, sorry) and was filled with this tremendous amount of hope. Do yourself the ultimate favor of reading this story. You are more than likely fated to fall in love with it.

"You never know what you're ready for until you have to face it."

Side note: that last scene made the entire story for me. Beautifully executed and something I will never forget!

MAYBE IN ANOTHER LIFE by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Atria Books/Washington Square Press Paperback | 352 pages | ISBN:  9781476776880 | July 7, 2015 | $16.00

eBook: Atria Books/Washington Square Press | 352 pages | ISBN: 9781476776897 | July 7, 2015 | $11.99

Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Books-a-Million | IndieBound | Apple | Blio | Google

About the Author

Taylor Jenkins Reid is an author and essayist from Acton, Massachusetts. She is the author of Forever, Interrupted and After I Do. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband, Alex, and her dog, Rabbit. You can follow her on Twitter @TJenkinsReid. 

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