From reading the synopsis of this book I honstly had a totally different impression of the kind of story I was going to read. Maybe that’s why I came away slightly disappointed once I’d finished the book, but I think in the end my 3 star rating for this book had more to do with what felt like an underdeveloped narrative than my under-met expectations.
When I started the book I was excited to read a story about a girl who wakes up after a traumatic event and her whole life is different. Usually this opens authors up to really flesh out their characters, change out their lives and really explore the idea of choice, like if the character had made different decisions in life where would they have been and who would they have been. So I was looking forward to all of that when I first got into the book and the first few chapters really seemed headed in that direction. But once Anna, the main character woke up in her “new life” it became apparent that this wasn’t a matter of exploring different choices.
Spoilers! So the author chose to go with a multiverse theme for the book and while I thought that was an interesting way to go and was curious to see how it was played out, it honestly didn’t work out well at all. I fell like the author didn’t think it through completely and in the end the book suffered for it. Especially because when you get to the ending it seemed like the author just copped out and went with an afterlife motif because she couldn’t figure out how to wrap everything up, it felt utterly unfinished. Spoilers!
I was looking forward to Anna having to look at the choices she made in her other life compared to the one she as “Annabelle” has made and see which life would have been the happier one. But instead what happened in the book was simply Anna running around trying to get back together with her boyfriend from her “real life”, Jake, even though he was with someone else in this alternate life. Plus, after everything that happened I couldn’t help but root for Zac, the boyfriend of her alternate self, Annabelle, because he was so selfless and basically saved the day in the end, while Anna was too busy just trying to have a happily ever after with Jake at the expense of everyone else.
This book was frustrating because there were so many elements that could’ve been good but they got muddled up by trying to make the “time jump” a more significant thing and making the entire plot fit into a week which just doesn’t usually work if you want the characters to be believable. Plus the villain was easily figured out from the start, which isn’t a horrible thing it just makes it harder to believe that the characters have such a hard time figuring it out.
Overall I’m glad I gave this book a chance and I still think it’s a good book, I’m just sad because with a few modifications it could have been a great book.
Genre: Young Adult / Romance
Author: Michelle Madow
I should have died when I was shot at the Halloween dance.
Instead I woke up—one week earlier, in a parallel universe where my mom’s fatal car accident six months ago never happened.
A world with my mom still in it was all I ever wanted. But in this timeline, everything is different—my grades, my friends, and even my boyfriend. I’m a stranger in my own body, and I don’t like who I’ve become.
But one thing is the same—that shooting will still happen at the end of the week.
I’m the only one who knows. Which means I’m the only one who can stop it.
But first I need to convince someone—anyone—that I’m telling the truth… and then get them to help me.