Book Review : Parallel by Lauren Miller

December 24, 2013 Book review 8 ★★★★★

Parallel exceeded all my expectations and makes me want to go around insisting that people read this book if they haven’t already.  Yes I know your to-be-read pile is probably scary high but you need this one too!

Book Review : Parallel by Lauren MillerParallel by Lauren Miller
Published by Harper Teen on 14 May 2013
Genres: Romance, Sci Fi, YA
Pages: 432
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
Buy on Amazon

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.

First Line of Parallel:

“I hesitate, then point my gun at him and pull the trigger.”

My Thoughts about Parallel:

Parallel was on my book radar for a while and a few people had recommended it to me.  I am always slow to read science-fiction books so the time travel aspect put me off a bit and I don’t feel the blurb does it justice.  But having loved Pivot Point earlier this year, I decided to try another one.  And that turned out to be an excellent move!  It is one of my favourite books of the years and one I can’t wait to reread in a few months time.  Yes you heard right, this is a reread one!

The science aspect was my favourite part!  I never thought I’d say that but it was so intriguing.  The concept of parallel lives really tickled my fancy and my mind is working overtime thinking over the implications of it.  The science is explained in a way that stays entertaining but it’s not dumbed down either.  I love books that take complex thoughts and that challenge you as a reader to step up to the plate and I did, believe me I jumped up and was all over that plate!  And I looked at that plate from every possible angle and no matter what way I examined it, I loved it.

I think a part of why I loved it so much was the contemporary aspect just sat so well with the sci-fi aspect. There are two worlds taking place, the here and there.  There is exactly 1 year and 1 day between the worlds but what happens in the there (a year and a day behind) affects the here.  So every time Abby woke up in the here, my heart was pounding; I couldn’t wait to see what would have altered due to choices her parallel self made.  It was all so unpredictable and mind boggling.   And Abby was a character I loved to spend time with.  She is focused and determined with her whole life plotted out but when life threw curve balls, she learnt to jump them.  I love how resilient she is.

The writing style was very much to my taste as well.  It was sparky, fun and full of life (lots of lifes, lol!).  And there were two romances to get caught up in.  The one in the here I was a bit blah about but the one in the there with Josh was so cute.  I loved how shy and slow moving it was but still intense and had all the feels.  Oh and there was another one in an alternative here but again it was no competition to the one in the there!  Team Josh all the way!  I love how this book altered all the time due to choices but at the same time was heading towards the same destiny.  As a true romantic who believes in soul mates and destiny, this made me feel all swishy inside 🙂

Another huge plus was the friendship with Abby and Caitlin, it is everything a friendship should be.  OK, they do fall out like friends do but they also know how to support and trust each other.  Caitlin is so smart, I just want to be her!  I love her mind and how quickly she can wrap her head around all the confusion that is surrounding them.  And on top of the great plot, characters to love, science to reflect on, a swoony romance and a great setting; there is more!  There is lots of art talk as Abby’s parents are artists, another huge highlight for me.  And that ending…yikes!

So my overall thought is no shocker….I love, love, love this.  I am already stalking Lauren Miller so I can see exactly when her next book releases as my hands are itching to get hold of it.


Rating Report
Did I feel it?
Overall: five-stars


Who should read Parallel?

I feel this one would appeal to those who like contemporary books and to those who life sci-fi books as it straddles both genres so successful.  But basically, I loved it and I’m strongly recommending it to everyone.


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8 Responses to “Book Review : Parallel by Lauren Miller”

    • trish

      In this case, it really stuck that happy medium between challenging you but also explaining this really well so it’s not intimidating. I need to read more books with parallel universes in them as I didn’t realise how much I’d love it!

  1. Kelley (Another Novel Read)

    Glad you enjoyed this one, Trish! You’ve pinpointed what I really loved about this book: the way the science was tackled and handled so well! It’s been a while since I read this, but I’m pretty sure that Josh was also my favorite of the romance options. He was the nerdy one, right? 🙂 You’re right about her friendship with Caitlin, too. So realistic and quite nice to read about (even with the falling out and everything). Great review!
    Kelley (Another Novel Read) recently posted…End of the Year Book Survey – 2013

    • trish

      Of course Josh was the nerd, that’s why I choose him 🙂 You were one of the people who recommended this book to me so thanks for that Kelley as you see it worked perfectly for me. I loved the science and felt the concepts were broken down and explained really well even if they did wreck my head just thinking about them!

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