I wasn’t quite ready to switch to another genre after reading When I Was You, so I decided to finally pick up my copy of When She Returned, by Lucinda Berry. Back in June, I read Saving Noah (also by Lucinda Berry) and loved the way the author wrote the story so I figured this one had to be good, too.
Kate Bennett goes missing from a Target parking lot one day leaving behind her husband and young daughter. Years after a futile search to find Kate, her husband, Scott, remarries and does his best to raise their daughter, Abbi, in her absence. 11 years after her disappearance, Kate returns home and here’s where the story really begins.
When She Returned is told from three alternating POV’s…Kate (telling the story in the past, what happened leading up to her return home); Scott’s new wife, Meredith (present day); and Abbi (also present day). I always love a book written with multiple POVs…especially when the perspectives are easy to follow and compelling (as I felt these were). And I really liked the dichotomy between the storytelling in the past + present points of view.
While I really thought this was an entertaining, fast paced read, there were lots of parts that left me scratching my head. I wanted more from Kate’s character…more “why“. Her storyline didn’t seem super plausible and I found myself wanting more backstory or deep dive into her character/background/feelings/etc. to understand how we went from point A to point Z. I just felt like there’s just more to her side of the story that could’ve been told.
That said, it was definitely a compelling read. The chapters were fast paced and with each one I found myself feeling like, “I can’t wait to see what she says next”. The multiple POVs kept me wanting to read just one more chapter , ha! Some parts were a bit redundant and as I said earlier, very unrealistic (just given the little we know about Kate). Aside from that, it was really entertaining. Well paced. Easy to follow. I’d recommend for sure!
Without giving more away, I’d love to encourage you to go into this one blind!! Don’t read any spoilers or super detailed reviews….I wish I hadn’t!!
3.6 out of 5 stars
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