College Professor Jason Dessen has the ideal life: a beautiful, caring, talented, understanding wife, a loving teenage son, and a good job in a city he knows and loves. He ducks out of the house one night to pay tribute to his college roommate who has gone on to win a prestigious prize in quantum physics. At the celebration, the friend tells Jason that he (Jason) is the one who should have won the prize. HE was the brilliant physicist. Slightly troubled at what might be a failure of life choices, Jason walks out the celebration and heads home. But from that moment on, things are never the same.
It appears that Jason’s preliminary work was in the applications of quantum physics to the concept of parallel universes. In a world of infinite possibilities every decision a person makes launces a parallel life path and existence for another version of that person. The life continues in a parallel dimension. In Jason’s case, the key decision in his life was to give up his research and marry Daniela, that oh so wonderful (etc.) woman. In one universe Jason went on to build a box that could transport people across dimensions, in the other he was just an old married college prof with a beautiful, loving family.
Author Crouch’s story reads like an action adventure, SciFi horror, murder mystery, apocalypse novel, modern romance and everything in between. And it IS all of those things. It’s endlessly inventive, surprising, with unimaginable plot twists. Crouch creates people we really care about, even the miraculously desirable Daniela. And more than anything else, it is the humanity of these characters that make this novel so compelling… even stronger than the concepts of parallel dimensions (there are other worlds than these) or all that mumbo jumbo about quantum physics.