If you’ve ever felt like you reached a dead end in life, that there’s nowhere else to go, you probably haven’t. Best-selling author Rochelle B. Weinstein (Somebody’s Daughter and Where We Fall) shows that no matter where life takes you, and whatever paths you may trek across, chances are you’ll always end up exactly where you were meant to be in her latest novel, This Is Not How It Ends.
Coincidences may happen, but can you really call them happy little accidents when everything seems to lead to your destiny?
Charlotte leads a simple life. She’s a high school teacher who does her best to impact the teens that pass through her life, her mom desperately wants her to meet someone but luck doesn’t seem to be on her side. That is until she meets Philip, a rich globetrotting businessman who was sent to coach from business class and throws a hissy fit because of a technical issue with his original flight.
Thankfully, it helps that Philip is charming and generous, nothing like the first impression of the arrogant malcontent who first stomped his way onto the flight. Therein lies the hopes of many a romantic woman who doesn’t fly too often.
Their whirlwind romance has its rosy bits along with the rocky parts – Philip travels 90% of the time and Charlotte soon feels a disconnect happening. In most relationships, that could be a dealbreaker. However, Charlotte went in with her eyes wide open, yet she whines about how Philip isn’t present when they are together. So does this mean their romance wasn’t fated to happen?
Enter Ben, aka Goose, one of Philip’s oldest friends and owner of a renowned restaurant in Charlotte and Philip’s hometown. With Philip constantly on the move, who better to keep his wife company while he’s away? As always with romance novels, the more time you spend with someone, feelings can start to emerge. These aren’t anyone’s fault nor were people hoping or planning on it to happen, but when there’s a void left by a significant other’s absence, it’s likely someone will come along to fill it.
In the end, what does it all mean? Was Charlotte fated to meet up with Ben instead? Does A lead to B, but in the long run, leads to C instead? Life is funny that way – it seldom goes the way you planned it to. But in a funny way, isn’t that what makes life so interesting?
Weinstein brings emotionally-driven ideas of uncertainty and circumstance together throughout This Is Not How It Ends, along with what it means to make the hardest choices in the most difficult situations. But isn’t that what life is all about? Making choices and learning to live with the consequences? We think we’re supposed to go right when the Universe does its best to steadily move us to the left. Either way, it’s an adventure worth taking, regardless where you end up.