Monday, June 15, 2015

"If You're Not The One" by Jemma Forte

Jennifer Wright has a life that is the envy of most- a loving husband, two lovely daughters, and a home in the suburbs. Husband Max may not be perfect, but he does love her. Jennifer has found, though, that lately the pressures of work and their home life have pulled her and Max apart from one another, and that their relationship is more strained than ever.

After a disastrous attempt to rekindle their flame, Jennifer gets into a life-threatening accident and she finds herself in a coma. This isn't just any coma, though, it is one that allows her to see what her life would have ended up like if she had stayed with some of her ex-boyfriends. Would she have been rich? Would she have had different children? Would she have traveled? As Jennifer's subconscious explores the various paths that her life could have taken had she made different decisions, it retains some of the information that she finds out. When she wakes up she finds that she now has the gift of hindsight. Will she stay with her husband, who loves her but is perhaps no longer her ideal match, or will she pursue paths as yet unexplored?

If You're Not The One is an interesting exploration of the question "what if?". What if you took a different path in life? What if different decisions were made? Where would you be now? While in a coma, Jennifer finds her subconscious exploring all of these different options, the different places that her life could have led. To be honest, I found most of the options to be quite grim. Not one of the men that she could have ended up with seemed to be the right one for her, and as such I was expecting a different conclusion. To be honest, I was disappointed with the abrupt way that the story ended. We as readers are left with far more questions than we are given the answers to. Perhaps this is what the author intended, though. Life is not black and white. There are always going to be grey areas and an abundance of "what ifs?". That is what saved the story for me. It was realistic. I doubt that there is one person who doesn't have at least one question about how their lives could have been different in some way, if not in their relationships than in their career or friendships. Jemma Forte skillfully explores the fact that our lives are made up of a series of individual choices, made day by day.

While the story moves around quite a bit, time-wise, I didn't find that it bothered me. It was clear to me who Jennifer was with at the time of that part of the story. The writing was good, the plot very interesting, and although I failed to connect with the main character, Jennifer, and the conclusion is not the sort that I usually enjoy (too many loose ends), I did find myself enjoying If You're Not The One and wanting to read more of Jemma Forte's books in the future. My thanks to the publisher for providing me with a copy for review.

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