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Wednesday, March 18, 2020

#ATBR2020 Review: The Return by Rachel Harrison @jessmapreviews

The Return
by Rachel Harrison

Thanks to Berkley and NetGalley for these copies.

Publisher: Berkley
Publish Date: March 24, 2020
Kindle Edition
304 Pages
Genre: Horror

A group of friends reunite after one of them has returned from a mysterious two-year disappearance in this edgy and haunting debut.

Julie is missing, and the missing don’t often return. But Elise knows Julie better than anyone, and she feels in her bones that her best friend is out there, and that one day she’ll come back. She’s right. Two years to the day that Julie went missing, she reappears with no memory of where she’s been or what happened to her.

Along with Molly and Mae, their two close friends from college, the women decide to reunite at a remote inn. But the second Elise sees Julie, she knows something is wrong—she’s emaciated, with sallow skin and odd appetites. And as the weekend unfurls, it becomes impossible to deny that the Julie who vanished two years ago is not the same Julie who came back. But then who—or what—is she?

My Review:

Well, this was quite the interesting read.  Julie, who went missing for two years, has returned. Her three closest friends decide to take her for a girls weekend but something doesn't seem right with her.  For a good portion of the beginning it's a lot of "What's wrong with Julie?"  But no one wants to quite ask her. Let me tell you, my friends would be all over me with questions and comments! The story is told through Elise's POV.  She's concerned about what's going on with her friend but also within the hotel they're staying at. Are things really changing or is she just drunk all the time and not remembering correctly? (Girl, been there.)

While the story does ramp up later on, I'm still left wanting.  There are certainly some eerie and gross moments... but there are also a lot of questions I still have.  I'm torn between loving the horror portion of the read and not being fully satisfied with the entirety of the novel. 


Jessica's Review:

This one I'm very middle ground on - it's hard to really review it too without spoiling it. THE RETURN by Rachel Harrison is a solid suspense story about a group of friends reuniting after one of them disappeared for years. Julie is missing, but her friends know that she's still out there and alive. Two year to the day, she suddenly returns and with no memory of what happened to her.

What didn't work for me was that the whole first portion of the book was a lot of dialogue between the characters and it didn't feel like there was much progression with the story. However, once it picks up then it really does. That's what redeemed it for me. I did enjoy the writing and for the most part the author kept my attention! By no means is this a bad review or a book I wouldn't recommend. I know plenty of other readers that absolutely loved it! I for sure will pick up more from Harrison in the future.

3 stars

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