Title: The Return
Author: Rachel Harrison
Expected Published: March 24, 2020 by Berkley
Genre: Horror, Thriller, Mystery
Goodreads Rating: 3.66 out of 5
My Rating: ★★★★★
“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 no one believes she will ever return—except Elise. Elise knows Julie better than anyone, and feels it in her bones that her best friend is out there and that one day Julie will 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?”
Y’all know I like weird books. Alice in Wonderland is on of my favorite books of all time and Bunny which I read last year enthralled me. The Return is another one of these werido books that not everyone will like. However, horror fans and fans of weird books will love this one.
The story line of The Return is great. It has this creepy vibe that had me double checking the locks on my hotel room while I read it. It’s also incredibily fast paced. It’s not a very long book at just at 300 pages but the writing makes the story a page turner for sure.
There was also a point where I found all of the main four characters to be extremely annoying, but I think that’s the point. Julie, Molly, Mae, and Elisa all have major flaws; the same way everyone does. Molly still struggles with having lost her leg to cancer as a child and uses the experience as a crutch to be mad at the world. Mae, from an extremely conservative family aims for perfection to the extent that she loses herself. Elisa cannot seem to take responsibility for her actions. All of them together create a interesting dynamic because they count themselves to be the best of friends while never fully talking about there feelings. This makes them all ultimately hate each out. Weird friendship right? But I actually think this is how so many young girl friendships are nowadays. We’re all to scared to be honest with ourselves, or to come off as ‘too emotional’ to really face what bothers us. The world is way to sensitive and PC nowadays, that you can never call someone out on their BS without feelings getting hurt. So while the girls annoyed me, I thought it was extremely realistic in the way they annoyed me, if that makes sense.
My biggest complaint, and it’s not really a compliant more of a ‘wish’, is that I really want to understand or know what Julie is now. What type of animal is she. How did those animals come to be? Answers! I need answers!
I really loved this book. It had the perfect amount of suspense and horror without totally freaking me out. I love the concept of the Inn, where every room is completely decked out in a particular theme. Harrison does a great job of depicting the rooms, to the point that the hotel room I was in while reading the book, had me feeling claustrophobic; which is exactly the way I imagine those rooms to be.
This book comes out March 24th! If you think you’d like to read this book, get your copy HERE!
I hope you enjoyed my thoughts on The Return. If you liked this review please let me know either by commenting below or by visiting my instagram @speakingof_books. Huge thank you to Berkely books for my advance copy of the book. All opinions are my own.
About the Author
Rachel Harrison was born and raised in the weird state of New Jersey. She receieved her bachelor’s in Writing for Film & Television from Emerson College. After graduating, she worked on TV games shows, in publishing, and for a big bank. She Lives in Brooklyn with her husband and their cat/overload. This is her first novel.
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