Saturday, 5 August 2017

Review: The Other Us by Fiona Harper

If you could turn back time, would you choose a different life?

Forty-something Maggie is facing some hard truths. Her only child has flown the nest for university and, without her daughter in the house, she’s realising her life, and her marriage to Dan, is more than a little stale.

When she spots an announcement on Facebook about a uni reunion, she can’t help wondering what happened to Jude Hanson. The same night Dan proposed, Jude asked Maggie to run away with him, and she starts to wonder how different her life might have been if she’d broken Dan’s heart and taken Jude up on his offer.

Wondering turns into fantasising, and then one morning fantasising turns into reality. Maggie wakes up and discovers she’s back in 1992 and twenty-one again. Is she brave enough to choose the future she really wants, and if she is, will the grass be any greener on the other side of the fence?

Two men. Two very different possible futures. But is there only once chance at happiness?

Paperback, 384 pages
Published May 4th 2017 by HQ

Terri's Thoughts

I randomly selected this book when I was looking for an audiobook to listen to based on the synopsis provided.  The concept intrigued me as who doesn't wonder what their life would be like if they have made different choices?  In this story, Maggie has the opportunity to relive her life to change her future by making different choices with two relationships in her past.

I really like the fact that Maggie jumped between her two lives when she travelled in to the past.  we saw how her relationship with Dan changed (or didn't) as well as what a life with Jude would look like.  You could see her struggle between the two "realities" and try to correct mistakes from the past and more often than not, repeat them.

I have to admit that I got frustrated with Maggie (or Meg) throughout the story.  Just because you make a decision one way, doesn't mean that all the puzzle pieces fall in to place.  Sheer will does not make happiness, sometimes you have to work to achieve it.  The fact that it took her a long time to realize this had me sometimes talking out loud telling her to smarten up.  I felt like most of the time she was trying to manipulate her reality just to achieve the outcome she wanted, without factoring in all of the pieces and taking a good look at herself.

I won't share the outcome of the story but will say that I am glad that along her journey, I am glad that Maggie eventually turned the mirror on herself in order to see where the blame belonged to her instead of just blaming others.  The fact that she learned some lessons helped alleviate my annoyance with her on her journey.

As an accidental find, I enjoyed this story that bodes the question, as outlined in the synopsis, is the grass greener on the other side?  It also told the tale that every decision has a consequence which was nice.  Overall a pleasant read.

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