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Book Review For Backlist Revival Tour: “Cities” by Carla De Guzman

Title: Cities

Author: Carla De Guzman


Celia has dreams.
She dreams of going to Seoul for that scholarship she never took, of leaving everything behind and moving to New York.
In all those dreams, she finds herself attached to Benedict, the boy she has always loved, who didn’t love her back.

Ben believes in parallel worlds.
Worlds where the things you didn’t do come true—worlds where he went to London and fell in love with Celia, where he shows up on the day she needed him most. He believes that dreams are glimpses into that parallel world, and it’s not a coincidence that Celia’s been having them too.

It’s the day of Ben’s wedding, in the middle of a typhoon in Manila. How will these dreams and unmade decisions change their lives? Will they bring them closer together, or just drive them further apart?

Purchase Links:

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You can also add this to Goodreads.

My Thoughts:

This could be the shortest review I’d ever write by far. So sorry for that. But I hope what I wrote here somehow made any sense to you who would read this. Many thanks to Ms. Carmel (@oo_carmel_oo in Twitter) and Ms. Mina (@minavesguerra in Twitter) who arranged this project.

Okay, so this was the first ever book I’ve read about parallel universe. Though I’ve heard of the term a few times before, this would be the first time for me to encounter a book that actually deals with that topic. It was really an interesting topic for me in the field of psychology, aside from inherited memories, of course. The story, however, still left me with so many questions even after I’m done reading it. But the answers would be something for me to find, I guess.

By the way, the reason that made me want to participate in this project and read this book was the catchline on the book cover. What if in another universe I loved you too? It was pretty catchy, if you ask me. And it made me think of an answer to the question, as well.

The division of chapters of this story was a little unusual for me, but it wasn’t actually the first time I encountered something like this. So it’s still okay for me. This book took me to various places, and the one that was stuck in my head was London. Though Korea was a dream destination for me aside from Japan, there was something about London that made me want to go there—someday. For now, I’ll settle with pictures, movies and books about it.

One thing I could say about the characters—all four of them—was that they had similar, if not the same, characteristics and personality that made them stood out so much. Ben was indecisive at most point, Vivian really came out bitchy to me (sorry for the use of the word), Henry remained in the friend-zone despite trying to fight for it, and Carla was someone who was unsure of her own capabilities until someone actually points it out to her. I’m not sure if I really described them as the ones that Carla wanted to make them turn out to be, though. But as I read the story, exploring the different multiverses in different places, I could see the four characters that way.

The moods of the four parallel universe mentioned here had variations in terms of the degree of the atmosphere. There was one which was completely lighthearted and not too dramatic. And there was another which was too heavy in my perception. If I rank the places where the multiverses of Ben and Celia happened, I’d say that the one in Manila was the most light-hearted one. That would be followed by the one that happened in Korea, with the multiverse in New York coming next. The dark and heaviest one for me in this story would be the parallel universe set in London. I’m not sure if this has something to do with the setting or the most matured theme out of the four multiverses mentioned, but that’s what I felt.

The ending in all of them, nevertheless, made them all learn one thing. They had to accept that things were not really meant for them to have. Whether there was a particular ending that they want in one of the parallel universe laid out to them, they never wanted it to affect the universe that they considered real and one that could still do something about in order for them to change it.

About The Author:

Carla de Guzman started out like any writer, sitting in front of her dial-up Internet computer and discovering fanfiction. Riddled with sleep apnea and a vivid imagination, she started writing every midnight. She still reads good fics obsessively, writes fanfiction secretly and still loves the idea of finding good fics. She, her parents and nine crazy siblings love to travel together, eat together and watercolor together, so you could say she’s pretty happy.


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