The Leaving by Tara Altebrando
Genre: science fiction (sort of?)
Six children were kidnapped from their school bus. No one knows what happened to them or if they’re alive. Eleven years later they’ve returned—well, only five of them have. None of them have any memories of what happened to them or the where they’ve been for the last eleven years, but they will stop at nothing to find out.
It seems to me that there is a trend in television and movies today where people disappear/die and then return a number of years later. However, this book seemed different to me since the tagline is “Six were taken. Five came back.” I really liked the added mystery of who didn’t come back and why.
Things I enjoyed about this book:
- The mystery behind where they’ve been
- The small clues that they left for themselves
- The importance of memory the author emphasizes, and how one should be grateful for their memories.
Things I did not enjoy:
- The random romance. It was unnecessary.
- I felt that in the beginning their homecoming wasn’t as big as it should have been. Parents losing their children isn’t something to gloss over. There was a lot of emotion that was just missing from this book.
Overall, I really enjoyed this novel and the sort of science fiction aspect of it was interesting. I also read this on Thanksgiving so I indeed felt the feels about being grateful for the memories that you have. If you like mystery and easy science fiction young adult novels, then you should definitely pick this one up!