TITLE: In Another Life
AUTHOR: C.C. Hunter
RELEASED: March 26, 2019
PUBLISHER: Wednesday Books
GENRE: YA Thriller
GOODREADS RATING: 3.60
TRIGGERS: Mention of abuse, depression, drug abuse, adoption, homophobia (small side character)
Chloe was three years old when she became Chloe Holden, but her adoption didn’t scar her, and she’s had a great life. Now, fourteen years later, her loving parents’ marriage has fallen apart and her mom has moved them to Joyful, Texas. Starting twelfth grade as the new kid at school, everything Chloe loved about her life is gone. And feelings of déjà vu from her early childhood start haunting her.
When Chloe meets Cash Colton she feels drawn to him, as though they’re kindred spirits. Until Cash tells her the real reason he sought her out: Chloe looks exactly like the daughter his foster parents lost years ago, and he’s determined to figure out the truth.
As Chloe and Cash delve deeper into her adoption, the more things don’t add up, and the more strange things start happening. Why is Chloe’s adoption a secret that people would kill for?
I’ve read and loved a bunch of C.C. Hunter’s older work – including the Shadow Falls-series and This Heart of Mine – which I actually reviewed earlier this year! To say Hunter has a special place in my bookworm-heart is.. an understatement? I simply can’t help but get all enthusiastic the moment I hear there’s something new being released in the future and.. it was no different this time around.
What I loved a lot in This Heart of Mine, was the mention of organ donation. This time around, there’s – once again – another theme I love seeing in books: adoption. It’s a representation I rarely come across in books and I love reading about it, so I wish there were more books with that subject.
Let’s talk about our characters first! Chloe was already struggling with finding herself, being herself after she had to move due to the divorce of her adoptive parents. On top of that, there’s her mother’s depression. Then she literally bumps into Cash who ends up telling her something that throws her life upside-down even more. According to him, she’s been kidnapped when she was three! So yup, there are a whole lot of themes incorporated in this one story. It never felt like an overload though – something I truly admired while reading.
I wanted to be removed from my life. Because my life is a freaking Pandora’s box, and if I open it, I’m scared what I might find.
I really loved seeing Chloe’s relationship with her parents. Living with her mom and having to cope with her depression definitely had a lot of influence on Chloe and the choices she had to make. On top of that, the relationship between her parents wasn’t optimal at all. It’s hard being in the middle of two grown-ups who are struggling with one another and, unconsciously, drag her down with them.
Then there’s Cash, dark and brooding. Need I say more? Although he’s the one turning Chloe’s life into an even bigger mess, he’s also the one who helps her cope with things. I didn’t always connect with him – more on that later! – but I did understand where he was coming from and why he was doing things in a certain way. Goes to show you don’t necessarily have to connect with a character to get them.
C.C Hunter’s writing is still as to the point as I remember it being. I literally read In Another Life in barely 24 hours. I couldn’t stop reading because I needed to know what was going to happen, what decisions were going to be made. Definitely helped how we get both Chloe’s and Cash’ POV’s – which are written in first and third person so I easily noticed who’s character I was reading at what time. It definitely helped me with understanding both characters but..
There are also some events that simply dragged me into the story hard and fast. The thrills, the tension and the curiosity to see what was going to happen next kept me on the edge of my seat. There’s a reason I read this in such a small amount of time after all!
I wonder if that’s all life really is, just smears of color. A collage of sweeping moments in different shades and hues of emotions. Times when you’re happy, sad, angry, scared, and when you’re just faking it.
There’s also a small conversation that takes place – and I absolutely adored the freak out of it since it pretty much states how you have to ask about having sex because “it should be a choice, not… an afterthought. I swooned, okay. I love it when this is shown so literally and beautifully in novels.
I couldn’t always connect with Cash the way I wanted to? He’s had a hard life, definitely a hard past, which he hasn’t worked through yet at all. I mainly believe me feeling disconnected was caused due to his drive to protect, but not care. That combination is one I’ve never struggled with or tried honoring myself so it was hard to understand at times. Apart from that, it might’ve also been caused by the way we were thrown into his POV. Maybe if we got to know him a bit before Chloe and he met, it would’ve been different?
If you’re not a little bit afraid, you’re not doing something right.
Another thing I didn’t really like was how Chloe’s neighbor – Lindsey – seemed to.. just be thrown in there to add another character to the story. She should’ve been more involved in everything that was going on. There’s even a double date that’s mentioned but never described and that was such a pity too! Keeping my fingers crossed that’s changed in the finished copy.
I have to say I still enjoyed In Another Life so, so much! I couldn’t stop reading and wanted to know how they were going to figure things out, what was going to happen and how things were going to be resolved or left unfinished. Sure, I would’ve liked some things differently but maybe those things will have changed? I did read and write this review ages ago so there’s a possibility..?
How do you feel about themes like adoption in novels?
Do you know any other books tackling this theme?
Because I’d love to add them to my TBR!