Author: Cristin Bishara
Expected Publication: September 10, 2013
If Ruby Wright could have her way, her dad would never have met and married her stepmother Willow, her best friend George would be more than a friend, and her mom would still be alive. Ruby knows wishes can't come true; some things just can't be undone. Then she discovers a tree in the middle of an Ohio cornfield with a wormhole to nine alternative realities.
Suddenly, Ruby can access completely different realities, each containing variations of her life—if things had gone differently at key moments. The windshield wiper missing her mother’s throat…her big brother surviving his ill-fated birth…her father never having met Willow. Her ideal world—one with everything and everyone she wants most—could be within reach. But is there such a thing as a perfect world? What is Ruby willing to give up to find out?
*a copy was provided by Netgalley for review purposes*
I can't recall having ever read a book about alternate universes even though I've always found them fascinating. Relativity was a very unique and interesting read. Ruby Wright's life hasn't exactly gone as she would have planned it: her mother died when she was four years old, her best friend George is just a friend when she wants to be more, and her dad has just married her stepmother Willow and moved Ruby across the country to Ohio to live with her and her daughter Kandy. Ruby is miserable in Ohio without George; her father is always working, her stepsister is a nightmare, and her stepmother is always painting creepy pictures. After an unfortunate incident (or you could call it fate) Ruby stumbles upon a tree that is surrounded with many ill-fated stories which transports her into another reality--one where she has a brother and her mother didn't die. Even her stepsister is nice. Completely freaked out she makes her way back to the tree and realizes exactly what she's discovered.
One of the things that I love about this story is that Ruby isn't just your average YA protagonist. Ruby is very intelligent--she loves science and math--and it shows through on every page. She's always using scientific data or equations to figure things out. She even has a tattoo of an equation on the back of her neck. She wears her hair short enough that the tattoo is easily seen and she has to use glasses to see, which isn't often used by authors for their main characters.
Throughout her journey, Ruby discovers several things about herself and fate by visiting 9 other realities which are different from her own. Each of these visits have repercussions not just on herself but for the people in those realities, especially those closest to the Ruby she replaces while she's there. She learns that every action has a different consequence throughout each of the universes she finds herself in--the smallest thing can have a huge impact on the world. She even learns new things about her family in the parallel universes that she never would have known in her own true reality.
I won't go into much more detail because I don't want to give away what happens to Ruby during her journey but I will say that I enjoyed following her as she goes through self-discovery and heartbreaking revelations. This is such a wonderful stand-alone, full of character and entertaining concepts on parallel universes.
About Cristin Bishara
Before publishing Relativity, Cristin Bishara worked as a professional copywriter, and taught composition and fiction writing at the university level. She has an M.F.A. in creative writing. Cristin lives in Florida with her husband, two girls, and rescued racing greyhound.