Maybe in Another Life
by Taylor Jenkins Ried
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 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?
Hannah believes there is. And, in both worlds, she believes she’s found him.
Maybe in Another Life is another book I picked up for the N.E.W.T.S. It fulfilled the prompt ‘a paperback’ for an Outstanding in Charms.
in ‘Maybe in Another Life’ we follow Hannah as she moves home after living in New York. Once home she decides to head out with her friend, who is is staying with, while out for a drink they run into Hannah’s ex boyfriend. From there the story takes two paths, what if Hannah stayed out with Ethan – her Ex – and what if she went home with Gabby?
Following the two story lines we see what could of happened in another life.
Hannah is a character that I don’t really have an opinion on. As much as I love Taylor Jenkins Reid’s writing I just didn’t really care what happened to Hannah mostly because it didn’t feel like we knew that much about her that was really important as a main character. We learn that she’s curvy, loves cinnamon rolls and always has her hair in a bun an thats it. I found it hard to really feel how she would feel and really want to see what decisions she was going to make
I did enjoy many of the side characters. Gabby for one, is a feminist and a woman of colour and had real depth, she really would have made the story if her character had been given more time within the plot.
The two different perspectives was something different. I have not yet picked up a book that uses this literary tool. Ultimately I wanted to see where each story line was going which is exactly what kept me reading.
If you like a contemporary I think you would enjoy ‘Maybe in Another Life’ however if you are looking for a literary masterpiece you may not enjoy it as much.
Ease of reading: 8/10
Character Development: 5.5/10
World Building: 6/10
Quality of Writing:6/10
What is your favourite Taylor Jenkins Reid book?