"Jacob was time out of sync, time more perfect than it had been. He was life the way it was supposed to be all those years ago. That's what all the Returned were."
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. In their old age they've settled comfortably into life without him, their wounds healed through the grace of time.... Until one day Jacob mysteriously appears on their doorstep - flesh and blood, their sweet, precocious child, still eight years old.
All over the world people's loved ones are returning from beyond. No one knows how 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 is real or a wondrous imitation, but one thing they know for sure: he's their son. As chaos erupts around the globe, the newly reunited Hargraves find themselves at the center of a community on the brink of collapse, forced to navigate a mysterious new reality and a conflict that threatens to unravel the very meaning of what it is to be human.
With spare, elegant prose and searing emotional depth, Jason Mott explores timeless questions of faith and morality, love and responsibility. A spellbinding and stunning debut, The Returned is an unforgettable story that marks the arrival of an important new voice in contemporary fiction.
©2013 Jason Mott (P)2013 Audible, Inc.
Story just seemed so lacking.... idea was good, but delivery was horrible.
narration was fine, story was horrible
I started listening because the TV show was cancelled. So to see "what happened" I got the book. I was disappointed because the book storyline was not very compelling. Quite boring and ridiculous to me. The idea was great, but the writing wasn't in my opinion. Would have returned it if I had remembered before time expired.
I love the concept of this but didn't like the direction it went. I did like the protagonist couple. Their loving bickering reminded me of my grandparents.
The best I can say about this is that it is a great idea, but it never quite makes it past just an ok read. Kudos to whoever rewrote this for the TV series.
A very different perspective on death. It was an interesting story. Not sure I would have picked up the book, but glad I got to listen...
Just another girl with too many books and not enough time for them all.
I got a copy of this book from the author/publisher at BEA13. Yes I know! That was one month shy of a year ago and I am just now getting to it. Well the audiobook at least.
The story of all stories starts with a little boy found in the rice paddies of China being returned to his family in the states. The story twist, the OMG of it all is that this boy has been not missing but dead for 40 years and he is the same age as when he died. Eight year old Jacob remembers nothing of the time he has been gone, only waking up in China. To him no time has passed and nothing unusual has happened. Jacob is not the only one. There are hundreds of people just waking up in the most random places with no memory of what has happened to them. They all say they just woke up. The dead or coming back and they all are trying to get back to their loved one.
I love this story idea. I have said it before I am a sucker for an original story idea. This is not a "Night of the Living Dead" book at all. It is more like people just reconnecting with the ones they love(d). There are several storylines and families in this book but Jacob's parents -Harold and Lucille are the main focus. I love the way their love and reconnection of their family builds and grows as Jacob's life touches them both in completely different ways. No absent YA parents here. They have been married forever.
Could you image seeing your son after he has been dead and buried for more than 40 years? You have worked as much as you could through the grieving process. You have moved forward with your life and WHAM!! He's back and looks the same as when you saw him last.
I really like this book but it was not a solid like until I got to the author's notes at the end. The book does not give a explanation as to why this is happening all over the world. The reactions of the population I can see really happening but I needed a bit more. The author's notes give the reader an answer to the why? But the question is ...What made him write this novel? What a touching answer.
Please read the prequels before jumping into this novel. The prequels are great.
This is a rare occasion where I actually learned of the book after watching the tv show, now in its second season. There were some very interesting developments on the show. So, I decided to read the book to perhaps gain some insight as to what may be going on in the show. I cannot tell you how disappointed I was that the show is so much better than the book. Of course there are some differences, which I expected. But, the cast of main characters is so much smaller in the book. The intrigue in the show was not present in the book. Here's the kicker...you never find out why or how the returned came back. To me, that was a cop out. The story built up to the climax, but we never really got a full resolution. This is the first time in my life that a book was not as well developed as a movie or show.
The narrator did a nice job, and there were some very interesting story ideas in the book. But, it seemed like the author just decided to stop writing and threw in an author's note to explain some reasons why, without coming right out and saying that's what he was doing.
I wanted to like the book, and I was excited to read it. But, it was a disappointment.
I enjoyed this book but have been waiting forever (or so it seems) for the sequel. I'm not sure he's going to write it so if you don't like cliffhangers, don't bother.
This was my book club's selection of the month. I didn't like it but I read it as a "duty." We all know that a duty does not have to to be liked - just done.
Well my thoughts about the books; First the disappointments (other than not liking the book in first place): Elvis, Marvin Gaye, nor Otis Redding ever came back! Also the Pastor seeing his wife as "failures," and the way he left her and his continued patterned. Fred Green's revolt (reminded me of the California citizens blocking the immigration bus.) Funny - was the 'love affair' of Harold and the old Black lady, Mrs. Stone. Compassionate, but hilarious! The surprise was Lucille!
No, this was my first.
Job well done!
Goodness no!! Let the dead stay dead!
"Can't ignore the obvious"
Got this on an Audible recommendation, but it might be last time I do that.
I understand that this story deals with a family during an 'incident', but there are glaring omissions that really weaken the back-story in my humble opinion. It's hard to care about the characters and their troubled emotions dealing with the 'Returned' when not a single person in the immediate or wider story suggests actually digging up a grave to see if the original bodies are still there.
That said, the writing is good and the reader does a good job. I just didn't connect with the story.
"Excellent! But quite different to the TV Series"
I loved listening to this story. The narrator performs the different characters very well, most of which are southern American. I bought this audio book as I enjoyed watching the TV that is based on it. The story is quite different to that of the TV series, however it is still a great story.
"Not the t.v. show"
I bought this book because I was enjoying the t.v. show 'Resurrection', which was based on this novel. The book is considerably different from the t.v. show and I enjoyed seeing the tale from a different, more global, viewpoint.
Henry was my favourite character because he seemed the most conflicted about the supernatural events occurring in his home town. I could really believe in him as a real person.
Tom Stechschulte did a really good job with the narration of this book. You can instantly tell which character is talking.
Everybody you've ever lost... is coming back...
If you didn't like the t.v. show, don't write off the book. It really is almost a completely different experience.
"when does it end?"
ive stuck with this to chapter 20. its been anything but easy. not sure whether its the snails pace ...actually, a snails pace would be like lightning in comparison... the story that goes no where, or the performance where the readers accent is such a distraction... where i wind up counting the times he uses a short o sound ...bah-dee bah-ther. wish i could get my credit back!
"A pleasant surprise."
I wasn't expecting to like this based on the subject matter but it was a really pleasant surprise. I enjoyed it very much. It wasn't ham fisted or pushing an idea. It's up to you to decide what it means. The characters are likable and believable. Narration was spot on.
"They returned again and again, but I won't be."
sci-fi does prejudice
No. Overall the story was not sufficiently coherent and complete for my liking. The author's note at the end was interesting and redeemed many factors I was not so keen on in the book. It gave some context and made the story feel more purposeful.
Down south accents that (together with my own prejudice) supported the mind sets of the characters.
No. I did not feel particularly strong empathy for the characters and would not be upset by their untimely demise.
Couldn't wait for the next chance to listen. A true picture of a parents unconditional love
"Slow to grip but in floods of tears in the end"
It took coming back to the novel after a break before I became gripped. I had been intrigued by the premise and once I became attached to be main family, I was feeling everything they were feeling. The pain of losing a child and then that child coming back to you and not understanding why felt very raw and real. You could not help but love little Jacob. You know from the beginning its not going to end happily and the last hour or so of the audiobook I had tears running down my face. Then with the authors note at the end tears became floods.
Not a book to read if you want to be uplifted but definitely a book to give a go.
"NO NO NO NO NO"
I watched the tv series and really enjoyed it until the lousy end at which point i felt cheated out of several hours of my life which had clearly been wasted. Since the basic story was pretty good I thought I'd give the book a go however.
Well, it was ok. Didn't really grip the attention but it was ok. Performance was fine. Not outstanding but ok. I would probably have finished the book were it not for the fact that the author then decided to insult my intelligence. He introduced characters called Nico Sutil and Timo Heidfeld. Are we supposed not to know that these are the christian and surnames of four German Formula one drivers? Could the author not be bothered to think up any other German names? I once read a book in which two Naval lieutenants were lieutenants Chub and Dace and i didn't finish that one either.
So no. I won't be finishing this one and i won't be buying any more from the same author.
I waited and waited for something interesting to happen with this book but I was disappointed. Maybe a faster pace and more interesting plot would have improved things.
The narration wasn't great but it wasn't the main problem with this book, I would listen to another by this narrator if it looked like a good enough story.
I bought this after watching the french TV series with the same title (Les Revenants) and I was aware it wasn't the same story but was built on the same premise and it had good reviews so I thought I'd give it a try. The TV series was full of suspense and drama, with a serial killer returning to start where he left off, a child whose twin sister has grown up without her and a man who slowly comes to the realisation that he in fact committed suicide on his wedding day, while struggling to cope with finding out his fiance has moved on to a new man. This book had none of that. The pace was infuriatingly slow, the characters were dull and after waiting the entire time for something to happen, the climax of the book was predictable and boring. People come back from the dead, the government don't really know what to do with them all, they lock them up, some people are open-minded, some people are not, then it all kicks off, some people get shot, some property is destroyed and then the returned just vanish into thin air with no explanation for it all.
Report Inappropriate Content