Have you ever wondered about the road not taken? I do! I wonder what would have happened if I had taken my speech professor’s advice and joined my college debate team. Would I have ended up where I am today or would that have opened a different path for me professionally? Or going back even further, what if my parent’s had not gone to Japan? What kind of person would I be? Kind of mind bending, right? Well, do I have a book for you!
Jason Dessen is a physics professor at a small community college near Chicago. His wife is an artist and a stay at home mom to their son, Charlie. It is a good life, but tonight, after meeting a college friend who has just won one of the most prestigious awards in their field, he is just a little bit jealous, and it does make him wonder if he made the right choice. As he walks back home from celebrating his friend’s success, he is suddenly accosted by a masked man, who whispers in his ear, “Are you happy with your life?,” and then everything goes dark.
When he wakes up, he is on a gurney surrounded by people in hazmat suits who all seem to know him. Their leader, someone Jason as never seen before, warmly welcomes him back by name. As he begins to adjust to his new surroundings, Jason soon realizes that he has woken up in a world that is different than the one he knows. Here he is an award winning scientist who never married and never had a son. Here he is doing research in a state of the art laboratory and has achieved something truly remarkable.
But which is his real life? The one that he was living before as a mediocre professor with a wife and child or this one where he is a celebrated genius? And who was it that caused him to wake up in this other life? As Jason wrestles with these questions and the more fundamental question of who he really is, the answers he elicits from deep within himself point the way towards the man he truly is and the life that he truly wants.
Mind bending, yet soulful, this is truly an existential sci-fi thriller, if there is such a genre! While engaging in the deepest questions of who we are and what makes us the people that we have become, Crouch’s taut narrative pull us deeper into Jason’s dilemma. Science plays an under girding role in the story, giving context and framing the profoundly human choices that Jason faces. This was a book I could not put down and I am still pondering the questions it raised!
Brenda’ Rating: *****(5 out of 5 Stars)
Recommend this book to? Keith, Ken, Sharon, Marian and Lauren
Books Study Worthy? Yes!
Read in ebook format.