Author: Lauren Miller
Publication Date: May 14, 2013
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.
I really liked the message of this book, and the science, but it was just a bit too long and not quite what I was expecting either, not that it was bad or anything.
Since Pivot Point came out I have been dying for a good book about multiverses, how they are connected., and how it all works. Pivot Point did not deliver for me at all in this regard, or any for that matter. Unraveling had a bit of a different focus while still dealing with multiverses and in Unbreakable we get to see more about their parallel selves, but that wasn't really the focus either. Then comes Parallel. I was hoping this book would be what Pivot Point wasn't. It wasn't. But at least I did finish this it and even liked some points unlike Pivot Point.
Like in Pivot Point, this book is merely the portrayal of the life of a girl who is in a sense, living two lives. While I understand this has to be done to really get the point across, that was all the book was. Just a story about the life of this girl Abby and that was pretty much my problem. It was also a little too long. Long enough that I got bored at parts. I will say it picked up towards the end, but this was like a soap opera with the parallel universe aspect thrown in to spice it up. I'm probably selling it too short, but that's what it felt like at times, actually most of the time except when they actually talked science.
Speaking of which, the science was awesome! I lived for every scene with Dr. Mann and his astrophysics talk and his explanations of the universe. They were pretty much the high points of the book for me. Even if you don't like science, this aspect isn't touched upon often enough that it would turn you off from the book, and if you do like it, then it's a huge plus. I really loved how it all connected with Abby's life, how everything came about and the message you are left with at the end. I know some people probably won't like it and just scoff at it, but gotta admit, Miller was quite convincing.
And that was truly the reason why I kept reading, the connection between the two parallel Abbys and how it all tied in with the explanations given, because unfortunately this was a just a better written Pivot Point in my opinion. There were parts where I was just plain bored and kept waiting for something to happen. While I did appreciate and understand how important aspects of Abby's life could just suddenly change from one day to the other and how living like that would be quite stressful and crazy inducing, it all came down to being just that. The story of the every day to day life of Abby, which at times was quite tedious. It did however pick up towards the end after certain details come about (in a soap opera kind of way of course haha) and the ending was really quite good.
This book could have done with like 100 pages less and maybe something more than the usual drama, but it was still a good enough book. I'm one of those people with a low tolerance of trite drama (in case the rest of my review didn't clue you in :P) so I'm pretty sure that the majority will be quite enthralled with this one.