Author: Catriona Silvey
Two people. Infinite lifetimes. One impossible choice.
Thora and Santi are strangers in a foreign city when a chance encounter intertwines their fates. At once, they recognize in each other a kindred spirit—someone who shares their insatiable curiosity, who is longing for more in life than the cards they’ve been dealt. Only days later, though, a tragic accident cuts their story short.
But this is only one of the many connections they share. Like satellites trapped in orbit around each other, Thora and Santi are destined to meet again: as a teacher and prodigy student; a caretaker and dying patient; a cynic and a believer. In numerous lives they become friends, colleagues, lovers, and enemies. But as blurred memories and strange patterns compound, Thora and Santi come to a shocking revelation—they must discover the truth of their mysterious attachment before their many lives come to one, final end.
I was lucky enough to win a copy of Meet Me in Another Life in a Goodreads giveaway. The concept of this novel is very intriguing as two souls reunite multiple times in alternate lives. It is not quite as expected as I expected the two characters to keep coming together and become a couple, but their relationship changes multiple times from platonic to romantic and everything in-between.
The story follows the meeting of the two main characters, Thora and Santi. They are opposites in the sense that Thora believes that your decisions affect your future whereas Santi thinks that fate dictates your life in the sense that you will end up at the same destination no matter the choices you make. It is also a difference of a more cynical approach, Thora, versus a more optimistic approach with Santi. After their initial meeting, they end up meeting again in a new alternate life. As each particular life ends, the next life seems to be their do-over to have the perfect life. It is an emotional roller coaster for the reader as you get fascinated by the current life only to have it end and then it is on to the next life with the added mystery of why this keeps happening to the characters.
It is a very complex tale that makes the reader think as it does not quite tell the reader everything. At first, there are a lot of questions as both the readers and the characters seem to be in the dark, but slowly more and more is revealed and, eventually, everything makes a fair amount of sense once you reach the ending. There are twists and turns as the secrets are revealed and the build up to the ending keeps you guessing along the way. Again, this is not the novel that I thought it was going to be, but it becomes addictive to figure everything out.
There were parts that got a little repetitive as the two characters keep meeting in their new life, but it does captivate the reader eventually. There are a lot of life lessons and thought provoking questions posed to the reader throughout about choosing the right path and destiny. It is a very unique book that honestly took me by surprise. The flow of the story can feel disjointed as each chapter starts with a new life, yet somehow it all gets put together by the end. I think the most difficult part about this story is thinking that the two characters were both the same and yet different as who they were in another life is not the same exact person they would be in the next life. It reminded me at times of Oona Out of Order, where things somehow both make sense and not at the same time. It was definitely more thought provoking than I originally believed before I started my reading, but I greatly enjoyed it.
I loved the setting of Cologne, Germany and seeing it in each “reincarnation.” There were some versions of their lives that I enjoyed reading about more than others, but they were, as a whole, all entertaining and fit the story well. The Time Traveler’s Wife is a great comparison novel as the two are based in reality where everything seems normal at first, but there is some “magic” behind it all. The mystery that is hidden from the characters at the beginning is slowly revealed as time goes on to eventually come to light. The author did a great job at producing this build-up to create a great page-turner reading experience. This is one of those reads that I do not believe anyone I know has guessed the ending and it was not obvious to me either. Therefore, if you want to try out a mystery, science-fiction, romance blend where the romance is not the main obvious plot, then this would be an interesting novel to try!
**I want to give a special thank you to Goodreads and the author, Catriona Silvey, for a review copy of this enjoyable novel. The opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.**