Friday, April 24, 2015

Book Review: Parallel by Lauren Miller

Abby Barnes had a plan. The Plan. She'd go to Northwestern, major in journalism, and land a job at a national newspaper, all before she turned twenty-two. But one tiny choice—taking a drama class her senior year of high school—changed all that. Now, on the eve of her eighteenth birthday, Abby is stuck on a Hollywood movie set, miles from where she wants to be, wishing she could rewind her life. The next morning, she's in a dorm room at Yale, with no memory of how she got there. Overnight, it's as if her past has been rewritten.

With the help of Caitlin, her science-savvy BFF, Abby discovers that this new reality is the result of a cosmic collision of parallel universes that has Abby living an alternate version of her life. And not only that: Abby's life changes every time her parallel self makes a new choice. Meanwhile, her parallel is living out Abby's senior year of high school and falling for someone Abby's never even met.

As she struggles to navigate her ever-shifting existence, forced to live out the consequences of a path she didn't choose, Abby must let go of the Plan and learn to focus on the present, without losing sight of who she is, the boy who might just be her soul mate, and the destiny that's finally within reach.

Overall rate: ★★★★☆ (4.5 out of 5)

Book cover: 4/5

Story plot: 4.5/5

Characters: 4/5

Language: 4/5

Favourite excerpt from the book: 

"You asked if you could miss your destiny," he says then, with a nod at the board. "Not if you find your soulmates first."

"Soulmates, plural?" I ask him. "How many does each person have?"

The old man smiles at his equation, as if the answer is right in front of us. "Exactly as many as she needs."

Caitlin's hand catches mine. "One down," she whispers.

Parallel by Lauren Miller is a story about the collision of the real world with a parallel world, and about finding your soulmates. I was drawn to this book the moment I found it in a bookstore's shelf because I have never read about parallel worlds before. Parallel worlds are a very interesting subject, and I've watched too little episodes of Fringe to satisfy my interest in it. But just like how I got confused while watching Fringe (I practically had to listen to my mom explanations first to fully understand an episode, which was kind of rare), Parallel also confused me. Somehow, in a good way though.

When Abby first woke up in a strange room that wasn't hers, she was still smart enough to act decently in front of everyone, even though they're all were pretty much strangers too her. It was a good thing that Caitlin, her best friend was there for her. The story goes back and forth between Abby and parallel Abby (it was later explained in the story how their world connects after both worlds collided) so if you're not very much into the story, it'll confuse you even more.

I have no problem with Abby (she's pretty strong, considering her situation), but parallel Abby... she seemed pretty careless about almost everything. From telling Tyler (her guy best friend) about Caitlin's feelings for him, to ruining her friendship with Caitlin, or even dumping Josh (parallel Abby's cute boyfriend) for Josh's older brother. Almost all of her decisions caused bad things to happen. I mean, it could have entirely been her situation's fault, but still, she could have done better.

Dr. Mann's theory about the existence of parallel world was very cool too. It obviously tells that Lauren Miller made some researches for this, because it sounded almost real. Or at least, it seemed believable to a person-that-is-horrible-in-science-theories-and-stuff like me. 

I just wish Lauren focused more on the theories, instead of making everything happen only because Abby needed to know who her soulmate is. Well, of course the soulmate part was the reason why I bought this book at first, but it would have been greater if the theories were used for a more rational reason. And in the end, after the earthquake occurred again (it occurred once too, just before Abby woke up to a different life. The earthquake was pretty much the result of the collision of the real world and parallel world) it was like none of the things happened! She ended up being back to her original life, and Josh, her soulmate didn't even have any idea who she is.

But nonetheless, I had a wonderful time reading Parallel. It's a really worth read, and the suspense on what parallel Abby's decisions would cause to Abby's life really makes you want to keep turning the pages. And I'm so happy that she ended choosing Josh instead of Michael, the brother, even though he's pretty nice too. But of course I like Josh more, he's just too sweet.

Although Josh wouldn't (or even anyone else) remember the things that happened with Abby when the world supposedly collided with a parallel world, I can still picture them having a relationship after that. And Abby would definitely appreciate her life in Hollywood more.

A very recommended read!

Till next time ♡ Love, Aishah Humaira'

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