Description (From NetGalley)
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What if the end were only just the beginning?...
Harold and Lucille Hargrave’s lives have been both joyful and sorrowful in the decades since their only son, Jacob, died tragically at his eighth birthday party in 1966. But in their old age they’ve settled comfortably into life without him… Until one day a government agent appears on their doorstep towing Jacob behind him—still eight years old, exactly as he was on the day he died.
All over the world people’s loved ones are returning from beyond. No one knows how or why or why this is happening, whether it’s a miracle or a sign of the end. Not even Harold and Lucille can agree on whether the boy at their doorstep is real or a wondrous imitation, but one thing they know for sure: he’s their son. As tensions begin to rise across the globe, the newly reunited Hargrave family must navigate the conflict between those who believe the Returned are a gift and those who are afraid of the unknown—a conflict that threatens to rock the very foundation of our humanity.
I'm not really sure how I feel about this book. I liked the characters, and it was an interesting concept, but it just seemed to meander about. It was written from an omniscient point of view and all the head-hopping just had me confused and kept me disconnected from the story. It seemed to raise a lot of questions and never really answer them. It got me thinking, and I don't think it is a book I will ever forget, so from that aspect I guess it did it's job and could be called a success, but I don't think that I actually enjoyed the journey.
The part of me that was disconnected from the story and found it hard going wants to give 2 stars, but another part of me respects what the story achieved in terms of the way it made me think and feel and wants to give 4 stars. For that reason, I'm opting for the middle ground.
I give The Returned 3 stars out of 5.
Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
My Rating System:
1 star: I will never post a 1 star review because this means it was so bad I couldn't finish it, and I don't won't publicly rate a book I haven't read all the way through.
2 stars: I may have liked the story but it was badly written or it may have been a boring story well written. Something about it kept me reading but I didn't enjoy it.
3 stars: A good, enjoyable read. If the description appeals to you I'd recommend reading it.
4 stars: A really good book that I thoroughly enjoyed and may even read again. I will want to read other books by the same author. Highly recommend.
5 stars: Reserved for books that blew me away and whose characters I can't get out of my head. These are books that I will definitely read again, possibly several times. If I read an e-book version I may even have to go buy a hard copy for my shelves. Why are you still here? Go read this book right now.