Tuesday, September 10, 2013

The Returned by Jason Mott

Genre: General Fiction/Literary-Speculative Fiction
Publication Date: 27th August 2013
Pages: 344
Book Source: Thanks to Harlequin Mira

Synopsis: 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 tempered 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 Hargrave family finds itself 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, award-winning poet 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.

My Thoughts:
A haunting and thought provoking read. 

You can get the general gist of The Returned from the synopsis or you may have heard the buzz and read the many reviews already. So I'll just tell you how this book made me feel.

Sensitive, lyrical writing with an eerie quality, The Returned touched me deeply, it made me cry for more than one reason. It's a recurrent dream ... to have my baby girl returned to my arms ... what I would give for just one more day to hold her close to my heart and make precious memories.  

People's fear of the unknown or that which is different was sad and confronting to read ... the Returned were harming no one, yet they were perceived as a threat by many. Reactions made me think we had progressed so little over the years ... a scary thought. 

Morality, humanity, civil rights, religion, love and second chances. All those 'biggies' that really make you pause and think. I like to believe the Returned are a miracle but that begs the question if everyone got their miracle ... how on earth would the world cope. 

Don't expect all your questions to be answered, it's not that kind of story ... I liked the "open to interpretation" feel to it. I liked the door it opened for me into "what if" territory. 

This is one debut novel I'm glad I read, I'll definitely be reading more from Jason Mott. 

Cover: Beautiful!

Connect with Jason Mott

Available for Purchase

For a limited time only download the free prequels 



The First
Harlequin (epub)
Amazon (mobi)

The Sparrow

The Choice







31 comments:

  1. Oh, wow! I love stories where time is somehow treated differently, I don't know why, but either time travel or time-sync something else like that really, really appeals to me. And I had never actually heard of this series! How is that possible?

    Do you know if the prequels should be read before The Returned?


    Lexxie @ (un)Conventional Bookviews

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    1. Hey Lexxie, I didn't read the prequels before reading THE RETURNED and I'm kind of glad I didn't. I've since read THE FIRST and it's just a very short story about one particular 'returnee' a young man who'd not long proposed to his girlfriend and killed the next day when hit by a bus.

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    2. OK, I need to actually get my hands on The Returned, then. Once, I read a prequel first, and it kind of ruined the actual first book in the series (because of a spoiler) but at the same time, there were a lot of things I didn't understand that had probably been explained in the novel as well.

      Thanks for the explanation.

      Lexxie @ (un)Conventional Bookviews

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  2. I definitely want to read this. I saw a lot of really positive reviews for it and I think it would be a good book for discussion. It does sound like a very touching and thought provoking book.

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    1. it would definitely provoke some interesting discussion in a book club read Christina, let me know what you think.

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    2. it would definitely provoke some interesting discussion in a book club read Christina, let me know what you think.

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  3. Lovely review Sheree, I think those who have lost someone close are more likely to connect with the characters and story of The Returned

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    1. Thanks Shelleyrae, yes it certainly has you exploring what if territory.

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    2. Thanks Shelleyrae, yes it certainly has you exploring what if territory.

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  4. A lot of buzz on twitter about this one. Glad you enjoyed it!

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    1. Thanks Mary, quite different from anything I've read before but I'm glad I did!

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  5. Wow!! This book sounds like a trip! Thanks for the great review!!!

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    1. I imagine this wouldn't be for everyone B, I found it confronting at times.

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    2. I imagine this wouldn't be for everyone B, I found it confronting at times.

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  7. I look forward to reading this book.

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    1. can't wait to hear what you think Nise, I know we have some similar experiences :)

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    2. can't wait to hear what you think Nise, I know we have some similar experiences :)

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  8. Just reading your review gave me chills so I wonder how I would go reading the book!

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    1. Let me know if you're interested Karen, you can borrow it :)

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    2. Let me know if you're interested Karen, you can borrow it :)

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  9. Terrific review! When I saw the ABC trailer (Brad Pitt is directing a series based on this book), I was hooked.

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    1. Thanks Beth, this one hit home that's for sure! The trailer for Resurrection gave me goosebumps. Have you heard about a start date??

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    2. Thanks Beth, this one hit home that's for sure! The trailer for Resurrection gave me goosebumps. Have you heard about a start date??

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  10. I'm not sure this is, or ever will be a book I would want to read, but if I do, it will be because of your review.

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  11. I am listening to it right now on audio and am really intrigued by what is happening (I am about 5 chapters in)

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  12. Nice review...I liked the book even though it was eerie.

    Have a great week.

    Elizabeth
    Silver's Reviews
    My It's Monday, What Are You Reading

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