Book Review: Time After Time by Hannah McKinnon

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Title - Time After Time
Author - Hannah McKinnon
Publication Date - June 2nd 2016
Publisher - MAZE
Format - Kindle Edition (Provided by publisher via NetGalley)
Pages - 347

Hayley Cooper, a powerful but now struggling lawyer, fantasises about what her life would be like if only she'd made different choices. It's understandable; the past two years have been hell. She barely sees her kids, her boss is trying to sabotage her, and her marriage is falling apart.

Burnt out, Hayley goes to sleep wishing for a different life. When she wakes up married to her first boyfriend, one she has not seen in over twenty years, she realises there might be some truth in the saying "be careful what you wish for". Over a single weekend, like Ebenezer Scrooge, Hayley gets to see her life on the other side of the white picket fence - not just with her first ex, but with each of her past loves. But is the grass always greener, and will she ever want to go home?

 When Time After Time by Hannah McKinnon was announced by Avon over on Twitter, I knew that I wanted to read this book. The cover, which I spotted first, enchants me completely even now. How could it not? If you know me at all then you'll know that I love anything that looks even slightly whimsical and romantic, and after I'd read the blurb it seemed to tick all of my boxes. I couldn't wait to begin reading and I was delighted when Avon allowed me a review copy, which I'm incredibly grateful for, so thank you very much Avon!

In Hannah McKinnon's Time After Time, readers step back into the early years of Hayley Cooper's life in an entirely heartfelt and humorous way. Having argued with her husband Rick in the present day, the distance between them more visible than ever before, Hayley heads to best friend Ellen's house and drowns her troubles in wine. The next morning, after wondering about how her life could have turned out if she'd made different choices all those years before, Hayley wakes up in a bizarre and worrying world. She's gone back in time, and is about to find out the truth behind the old saying "be careful what you wish for" in a way she'd never thought possible.

One of the things that immediately stood out to me about this book was its structure. I adored how the author took the reader back in time, introducing readers to each of Hayley's early relationships and then back to the present day where Hayley is living the life she would have been handed if she'd stuck with each of her past boyfriends. I couldn't help but to feel a sliver of excitement during each jump between the times. I loved being witness to the moment Hayley met these men, and then learning of how the relationship would have went if they'd stayed together. It was brilliantly-written and had me hooked immediately. From each chapter to the next, I was captivated by the turn of events that took place and couldn't wait to see how Hayley would handle the cards she was dealt. There were so many ups and downs within the story itself. One moment things would seem perfect and by the next Hayley's life was up in the air once more. Fast-paced, funny and full of fabulous antics, I was eager to see where Hayley would end up next, and with whom.

The characters within Hannah McKinnon's Time After Time were fantastically put together. As well as Hayley herself, I found meeting her ex-boyfriend's incredibly entertaining. From one to the next, I was never quite sure of how things would take a turn for the worst, or for the best. Hayley herself was a wonderful heroine within this novel, one whom I'm sure lots of women can relate to. Hayley's marriage to Rick in the present day was becoming strained from life, from her career and from trying to perform that balancing act that so many women do. It's an almighty row that sets off Hayley's thoughts about where else she could have ended up being if she'd made different choices, without having any idea of what would come from it. I adored watching Hayley grow into the woman she was in the present day. We see her turn into a woman beside her best friend Ellen, along with the trials and tribulations of life, including dating. I truly felt as if I knew these characters inside out having gone so far back into their history. It was completely endearing and I just couldn't get enough.

All in all, I absolutely loved Hannah McKinnon's Time After Time. Although the author kept it real, it still had an element of magic and fairy-tale about it that was absolutely scrumptious. Written with heart and warmth, and that age old question of 'what if?', I'd certainly recommend this book to anyone who's ever wondered about where they could have ended up instead of where they are today. Cosy and superbly inviting, Becca's Books is awarding Time After Time by Hannah McKinnon with four of my bookish cupcakes. A must-read for anyone who loves a romantic comedy with a touch of sparkle!

Special thanks to Avon Books and Hannah McKinnon for providing me with a review copy of Time After Time in exchange for a fair and honest review.

About the author
I was born in 1971 in Manchester, UK to British & Swiss parents. A year later they moved my older sister and I to Switzerland. Rather unsurprisingly I love mountains, chocolate and cheese... or mountains of chocolate and cheese, and my sister, of course.

As a slightly rebellious, rather moody and very ambitious teenager, I remember telling Dad I'd own a company one day. "What kind of company?" he asked. "I don't know," I replied, "but I'll have one." Well, that dream became partially true at least, but it took me a while to get there.

After finishing commercial studies in Geneva I worked as a PA for DuPont. A year later I moved to Neuchâtel and became the Purchasing Manager for an ultra-cool company that made motors for industrial and space applications. 

Finding myself lacking in theoretical knowledge, I returned to university, studying part-time for a Bachelor's Degree in Business Administration. And then a friend of a friend introduced me to another friend who'd started up an IT recruitment business. BANG! That took care of my career for the next fifteen years as I rose through the ranks to become CEO and a shareholder. And I finally owned (okay, okay, a tiny bit of) a company.

Things outside of work were never boring either. A chance encounter back in the dark ages of the Internet in 1999 led me down the aisle with Rob, my Canadian rock, just five months later. Actually it was exactly ten weeks after we met face-to-face at the Saint John airport in New Brunswick, Canada - and we're still married. True story. Our first son was born in 2003, followed by identical twin boys just sixteen months later, which means I'm heavily outnumbered.

In 2010 Rob and I decided to move to Oakville in Ontario, Canada. Maybe it was the failed attempt at a start-up company, or the fact I suddenly found myself in my forties, but one morning I decided to follow my oldest passion, started writing, and never wanted to look back. 

I write fiction for adults and children's books, and sometimes I think I'll never have enough time to get all of the crazy ideas out of my head and on paper. I also have a soft spot for short stories and mud runs. I love mud runs... hey, wait... that's another story I could write...!


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