Jan's Reviews > Time of My Life

Time of My Life by Allison Winn Scotch
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's review
May 12, 11

it was ok
bookshelves: fiction, chick-lit
Read in April, 2011

** spoiler alert ** One thing you need to understand about my reading list is that it is very long. The books at the beginning of it have been on the list for several years. This year, I have been making a concentrated effort at tackling those books that have been on it for a long time, such as this book. Imagine my surprise, upon receiving it from the library, when I realized that this book had already crossed my path many times before when I was volunteering a the bookstore AND I PASSED IT UP, not recognizing that it was a book on my list.

I should really learn to listen to my instincts.

So this book is one of those standard "It's A Wonderful Life" type stories. The central character, Jillian, is unhappy with her life as a well-to-do homemaker and wonders what would have happened if she'd made some different choices in her life, i.e. stayed with that old boyfriend, continued in that high-powered job, etc.

For me, the main problem with this book is that Jillian's life is actually quite nice. She might not be entirely satisfied with it, but her issue is existential, not physical (unlike, say, the movie mentioned above, where the central character is experiencing serious financial difficulties). In reality, her problems could be resolved if she just actually, you know, TALKED to her perfectly nice husband, rather than seething silently. Which, to me, made her come across like a spoiled brat. I had a hard time relating to her.

I think that a therapist was pretty much all she needed, but instead, she somehow magically gets sent back in time when a massage releases her chi. Um, okay.....this plot point is never explained. At least in "It's a Wonderful Life," you know that an angel is the one showing George how things could have been. I could have used a little explanation.

So, blah, blah, blah, after a lot of drama and such, Jillian of course eventually realizes that she actually liked her future life after all and finds her way back to it. And here is where the story really lost me. Because when she goes back to her future life, things that she did in her second attempt at the past actually changed the way things turned out in the future! And yet she's still married to the guy she was married to in the beginning with the kid she had in the beginning. Huh? So what was the point of the book? Was her future life better than her past or not? And if her future life just needed a little improvement, why couldn't she make that happen without going back and mucking around with the past?

But the thing that REALLY bothered me is this: in Jillian's original past, her best friend discovered that she was unable to have children after several miscarriages and eventually kills herself because all she ever wanted was to be a mother. But after Jillian mucked around in the past, when she returns to her new future, that friend is not only still alive but has natural born (not adopted) children. WHY? What could Jillian going back to her past possibly have done to make her friend able to have children? It makes no sense!

I feel like the author just wanted to have a perfect, happy ending. To me, that's just intellectually dishonest.
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Comments (showing 1-3 of 3) (3 new)

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message 1: by Hafidha (new)

Hafidha Wow, that sounds awful.

message 2: by Rk (new) - rated it 4 stars

Rk I think you may have missed the part where Jill called 911 earlier (this time) during her friend's miscarriage. The extra time limited the massive bleeding and minimized the internal damage that she originally suffered. This is why she was able to have a child time #2.

Amber And Meg didn't kill herself when Jillian went back to her old life, because Jillian realized she wasn't a good friend and wasn't there for her like she should have been. So the "new" Jillian was more supportive and caring.

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