I love the “Groundhog Day” Loop Trope so when I saw this blurb on this book I had to get it. Justin A. Reynolds’ debut novel, “Opposite of Always,” is a delightful, poignant, and captivating story that explores love, loss, friendship, and the beautiful complexity of life. Its engaging narrative, combined with time-travel elements, offers a fresh and unique perspective in the realm of young adult literature.
The protagonist, Jack King, is an endearing character whose life takes an unexpected turn when he meets Kate at a party. They instantly connect, but their blossoming relationship is cut short when Kate tragically dies. However, Jack finds himself stuck in a time loop, getting multiple chances to save Kate, which forms the crux of the story.
Reynolds’ writing is both sincere and humorous, maintaining an excellent balance that adds depth to the narrative. His portrayal of the characters is authentic and nuanced, showcasing their quirks and vulnerabilities in a relatable manner. Jack’s attempts to change the past and his struggle with the consequences create a compelling, emotional narrative that keeps the readers hooked.
While it reminded me of a “What if John Green wrote a ‘Groundhog Day’ story”, what sets “Opposite of Always” apart is its remarkable exploration of life’s intricacies, showing how our choices affect our relationships and our journey. Moreover, it beautifully illustrates that even amidst the inevitable heartbreaks, there’s always room for joy, love, and second chances.
“Opposite of Always” is a powerful, heart-wrenching, and yet, a remarkably uplifting story that resonates deeply with readers. Reynolds’ skillful storytelling, combined with his ability to portray raw emotion, makes this book an unforgettable read. It’s a potent reminder that in life, as in love, the journey matters as much as the destination.