Friday, July 31, 2015

Maybe In Another Life by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Taylor Jenkins Reid writes books that are not my usual type of story.  That being said, it's a good thing to hop over to a different kind of book on a regular basis.  Keeps you thinking and keeps your reading fresh.  Maybe In Another Life is exactly the sort of book that I mean.  It's another of those that at first glance appears 'light' (I hate that expression), but has some quite serious things to say underneath the cinnamon rolls.  Yes, our main protagonist, Hannah, loves cinnamon rolls and honestly, she eats them all through this book and talks about them even more.  I really don't know why this story doesn't include a coupon for a cinnamon roll.  You'll want one when you finish it - I promise!

So, our primary character, Hannah Martin, is in her late 20's.  She is leaving New York, where she has also left a very bad relationship, and moving home to Los Angeles.  She'll go to her best friend, Gabby, who has been there for her since they were in high school.  Gabby is married to Mark, and Gabby's family invited Hannah to live with them years ago when Hannah's parents and sister moved to London, where the said sister had a special dance opportunity.  Gabby represents stability to Hannah.

Hannah is still unsure what she wants to be when she grows up.  She's lived in six different cities and has not felt settled anywhere.  Perhaps Los Angeles will finally be the right choice.  Gabby and Mark take Hannah out to meet friends soon after she arrives back in town.  There are people at the bar that they've known since high school and more importantly, Ethan is there.  Ethan and Hannah dated long ago, but college and circumstances separated them.  Hannah has always wondered 'what if' about Ethan.  At the end of the evening, a choice is presented.  Should Hannah go ahead and leave with Gabby and Mark or should she stay longer with Ethan to renew their acquaintance?  Here's a small quote:

     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.
     So I decide to . . .

At this point, our storyline diverges between the two choices.  In one, Hannah leaves and her life changes dramatically.  In the other, Hannah stays and her life changes dramatically.  Did you ever see the movie Sliding Doors?  This is kind of like that.  In each chapter, we see what happens on the one path and then we see what happens on the other.  And Hannah's fate is very interesting in either direction.

I found this book a good one, if a bit predictable.  I did enjoy seeing what might happen and seeing where the lines melded and diverged and then ran back to cross over and over again.  Hannah and Gabby were true friends, in both universes.  I liked how Hannah's extended relationships were examined as well and sorted out.  I'm not someone who spends a lot of time wondering if I found the 'right' guy.  I know that I did.  However, I also believe that sometimes, your 'right' person just isn't available, for whatever reason.  And, perhaps then, there will be another path.  What do you think?

I'll be checking out this author's other books - there are two - and I might have to go have a bit of cinnamon roll.


  1. I love "light" books with a deeper message. This sounds really good!

    1. I enjoyed it, Kathy. It was interesting with the dual timelines.

  2. I like the sound of this one...I enjoy mixing up my genres, too. I haven't yet read this author, but have one of her books on my Kindle: After I Do.

    Thanks for sharing.

  3. This sounds good. I need to start branching out into other genres, too.

  4. I've been hearing a lot about this one. I think I have it on my shelves somewhere ... I'll have to dig it out and get it read one of these days!

  5. Now I want a cinnamon roll. This does sound interesting and I think I can handle it being a predictable as the premise is interesting. I'm glad you enjoyed this. I look forward to giving it a try!

  6. It's always comforting to think that the end results will be similar, no matter what you choose.

  7. I enjoy reading light books once in a while. And this book sounds like one I should devour, pun intended. ;)

  8. Well, I wanted a cinnamon roll after your first paragraph! I don't know that I'd like the two possible storylines, but I did like the concept of Sliding Doors so maybe I would.


Thanks for stopping by! I am so happy to hear your thoughts and will respond as soon as I can. Happy Reading!