What would you do?

The Returned

What would you do if your loved ones came back from the dead?

Would you welcome them back?  Fear them?  Deny their existence?  This is the central question to Jason Mott’s compelling debut novel, The Returned.  The novel begins with Harold and Lucille Hargrave, an old married couple who have been mulling that very same question.  Soon a government agent arrives with their eight year-old son Jacob, who drowned over 45 years ago.

The Returned is primarily set in a small southern town in a world much like our own.  The difference is that a growing number of the dead are somehow coming back to life.  These people are referred to as ‘the returned’.  The returned are the same age they were when they died and they appear normal.  They are not zombies or angels or spirits, just people who wish to return to their loved ones and their lives. 

This is where complications emerge.  As the returned’s numbers grow tensions build, sparking riots and government intervention.  Harold, Lucille and Jacob are caught in the middle of it all as their sleepy town comes to be occupied by not only more and more returned individuals, but also members of the US military.

Jason Mott writes with great sensitivity and integrity and at the same time he connects with the reader on an emotional level.  He will repeatedly have you questioning what you would do, or even what it means to be human.  He is a new author with great promise.

If you are intrigued by the premise of The Returned, you may be interested to know that ABC has a March 2014 television pilot called Resurrection, based on Mott’s work.  It will be interesting to see how the Hargrave’s story and that of ‘the returned’ play out on the silver screen.

Written by Reference Librarian Stephanie.


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