Karen @ Planet Books, Book Reviews (Silver Spring MD)
Second Chance Or Just A Dream?
What would you do if you daydreamed about your old life to the point that you were given the chance to relive it for a second chance at happiness? That is what Jillian, the protagonist of Allison Winn Scotchs upcoming release, Time of My Life, is faced with.
Sure, we are always seeing the greener grass on the other side of the fence of life but we are in the life we are in because of the paths we chose that brought us here. Sometimes I wonder how I got here. Here being in a fun, loving and loyal marriage; living in Okinawa; having great friends literally all over the world and being as happy and busy as I am. But some days I wonder what would have happened if I hadnt taken that temp job in Hubbys building and met him, if I had stayed in Denver ten years ago and not run home to Maryland full of homesickness. If you dont have moments of wonder and reminiscing than you just arent human. It is human nature to always wonder, What if?
Allison Winn Scotch replaces Jillian in her past seven years back. Into a relationship with the man she still wonders what if about when her marriage to Henry doesnt feel shiny and perfect anymore. In her old life she is a mother of an adorable little girl, the wife of a overworked husband who she pushes away when he is home because hes just in her way, and a desperate housewife who is always going at full speed in order to make life seem perfect and desirable from the outside looking in.
When Jillian ends up seven years in her past after a freak chi experiment administered by her gorgeous massage therapist Garland she wonders if this is her second chance at being happy (edited to remove plot spoilers)
The underlying story line in Time of My Life was the relationship, or lack there of, between Jillian and the mother that deserted her and her family when she was just a child. After discovering that this woman who haunted her in both the future and the past is just a stones throw after all this time, Jillian begins to realize what may have caused her mother to leave all those years ago. The fears that Jillian faces as a mother herself are overwhelming and terrifying at times and when she looks back and actually moves towards a relationship with her mother, she begins to understand.
But after all the fun and wondering if this is really a second chance or just a freak of nature/time space, Jillian starts to realize what she thought she wanted and regretted were not in her past but right in front of her in her real life.
Time of My Life was an okay read but for some reason it didnt grasp my attention like I wished it had. I dont know if it was the book's concept or the voice of the main character, Jillian, that bored me. I wanted to enjoy this great idea of a woman who appears to time travel (still dont know exactly what happened, if Jillian actually stepped backwards in time or was just dreaming) and gets a second chance with one of her great loves as well as the opportunity to rebuild a broken relationship with her own mother. I wonder if I was just reading it at the wrong time for me?
Mary (Greeley, CO) (Greeley CO)
Even though I am generally a little too much of a realist to comfortably read and enjoy stories of time travel, I was nonetheless very excited to read Allison Winn Scotch's new novel. I have to admit that the concept of the main character (Jillian) retreating seven years and reliving (possibly even altering) events did strain my brain at times. That aside, I really responded to the emotional honesty of Jilly as she worked her way through issues, and the writing itself was crisp, clever, and engaging. Toward the end, I almost couldn't wait to see how it all resolved, and I always love when I feel that kind of uncertainty and anticipation in a book. It was a great read and a book I will definitely recommend to my friends.
Carol (San Jose CA)
Time of my LIfe
What gal or guy hasnt thought what if I had only chosen Lonnie instead of Jim or Cindy instead of Sue, what if? Or in the case of Jill Westfield, the main character in Allison Scotchs funny, but honest and latest novel, Time of My Life Jackson instead of Henry. This tale, based on the 1940s idiom - hindsight is anything but twenty-twenty. Jill finds herself seven years in the past and is given a chance to revisit her life as a highly paid advertising executive, a stay- at-home wife and a devoted mother. Through trial and error Jill rethinks her biggest decisions and find that lifes decisions are rarely black and white. Good vacation read!
Rosalyn (Raleigh NC)
Time of My Life
Hasn't there been a time when you looked around your current life and wonder what it would have been like if you had made different choices? My single friends and I have this conversation all of the time. We especially like to talk about 'The One Who Got Away'. That is the guy that we think, wow, I should have made a better effort to make that relationship work. Jillian gets a second chance at 'The One Who Got Away".
I thought this book would be more of a beach read however it delivered a deeper message that what I was expecting. The main reason for rating this a '3' rather than a '4' is because I wanted to hear less of what Jillian was thinking (her story was told in the first person) and know more about the people and situations going on around her.
I was satisfied with the read and would recommend it to readers who enjoy 'Chick Lit'.
Mary (Union City TN)
Time of My Life
This book asks the big question among middle-agers, the what ifs. "What if I had chosen the other path? What would have been the consequences? Would my life have been more satisfying and happier? What if . . ., what if . . .?" It's a question we wrestle with daily. Time of My Life lets you "see" what happens when a wife and mother does have that opportunity to revisit the past. Are the consequences of second-chance decisions any better? Are they satisfying?
This is a good book to read for fun and pleasure, but it also has a deeper side. It will nudge you to think of the decisions in your life and perhaps put the "what ifs" in their proper place.
I also must add I love the cover!
La Deana (Norman OK)
The Road Not Taken
Time of my Life is a nicely written book of "what ifs" that many women face. What if I chose a different guy? What if I didn't have this child or this job? Do our choices ultimately matter or does how we handle our choices matter more? I enjoyed this somewhat lighthearted look at the road not taken. Ms. Scotch gives us a fun story wrapped around the premise that sometimes what really needs to change is us.I would recommend this book for anyone looking for a quick read with a little twist!
Helen (Petaluma CA)
Boy, did I enjoy this book. I wonder at the age of Allison Winn Scotch for she has so much life information and she relates it in a manner we can all hear. I felt her tears and I heard her laughter. The arrangement of the novel is no small feat and we, her readers, are the winners. You cannot help but reflect on your life as you share Jillian's.The ultimate what if. Good read.