Getting back into the swing of things each week is hard. So is finding the quiet time to write a review over the weekend. In order to ease out of the weekend, I’ve decided to begin my blogging week with a mini review.
Late last fall my husband began watching a French television series being broadcast by IFC called “The Returned.” I frequently read at night in the living room and can tune out the television as needed. There was something about this show that kept grabbing my attention even though I had to read the sub-titles. I finally got tired of asking my husband what was happening or why a character said what was said. Like the book I’m reviewing today, it dealt with formerly dead family members returning from the dead. I started watching it myself from the beginning and was fascinated. So, when I received an email from a publicist who works with Audible titles, I couldn’t pass up a chance to give Jason Mott’s The Returned a listen.
After the death of their eight-year-old son Jacob decades earlier, Harold and Lucille Hargrave’s coping mechanisms protected them from life to the point where they really weren’t a couple anymore. They were doing little more than just existing in their golden years together. When a government official shows up on their doorsteps with news that their son had been found and that he was still eight-years-old, they found themselves forced to some how form a family bond once again. What I enjoyed the most about this book was the way in which these two characters are forced to grow again as human beings because of Jacob. To me, that was where the true meaning and power in this novel was found.
From an audiobook perspective, this was my first Tom Stechschulte listen and I thoroughly enjoyed his work. His Lucille made me smile each time she spoke. I would be disappointed if he didn’t narrate the series as it continues unless a change is needed due to the way the subsequent novels are written.
This novel isn’t a traditional kind of zombie novel and that may very well by why it appealed to me. Don’t read this book for the zombies. Read it for a powerful story about what it means to be alive and to live.