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Remember Me Like This: A Novel by Bret…

Remember Me Like This: A Novel

by Bret Anthony Johnston

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3115354,850 (4.14)2



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Bret Anthony Johnson spins a haunting and emotional tale of the happy before, shocking during and confusing adjustment to an altered reality after a boy disappears from a family and its perfect mundane Texas life and returns a scarred teenager. No one said happily ever afters are easy or painted with a single stroke. This book delivers an emotional narrative from the five primary members of the unfortunate Campbell family, each more deep and aching than the other. A must read this summer. ( )
  NRam | Apr 10, 2014 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Justin Campbell was twelve years old when he went missing. His parents and younger brother spent this time trying to deal with, or in some cases not deal with, the loss of Justin.

Then wonders of wonders, he is found due to an observant lady who notices him and calls the police. A man is arrested, a pedophile who feeds on the young, and a man who is the son of someone Justin's grandfather knows. It is here that the story really begins.

A family trying to put their lives back together, brothers who must rediscover a bond. Guilt, ideas of revenge and many other emotions that can affect a family and tear it apart. Is it possible to rebuild lives after such a horrible event. Will it ever be the same? The ease of just being together? How to keep the quest for justice from tearing everything wide open.

While the kidnapper does play an integral part, not so much what he did to Justin but just the fact that he exists, it is more about this family, their bonds, their thoughts and actions. I believe that this is the author's first book of fiction, previously writing non fiction, and he does a wonderful job. He doesn't try with his prose to wring
every last ounce of heartbreak out of his readers, but presents the story very realistically, at least I thought so. After all the story itself, the circumstances alone provide enough emotion.

ARC from librarything and the publisher. ( )
  Beamis12 | Apr 9, 2014 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I'm thrilled that I was chosen to early review this book. The author had me from the very first few pages. The book took some interesting twists and kept me guessing. The family the book is centered around are an everyday group of people that we can all relate to and sympathize with. Absolutely recommend it. ( )
  gail616 | Apr 6, 2014 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
What a great story...there was nothing predictable about this book! It will grip you from the start and keep you turning pages because the mystery unravels bit by bit! Such an engaging read....4 stars! ( )
  Mrsmommybooknerd | Mar 31, 2014 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Bret Anthony Johnston's book, "Remember Me Like This," hooks the reader from the very beginning. The characters are well-developed an in no time at all, you find yourself caring about them and their well being. As the story and mystery progressed, I thought I could anticipate the direction it would take.

However, once Part II started I realized that this book did not have a predictable trajectory.

Highly recommended! ( )
  kitkeller | Mar 31, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 14 (next | show all)
There is one word that sums up this book for me; overwrought. The author knows his craft and can turn out good prose. The problem is that he does so about the same thing over and over again. Every emotion, every thought is described at length. It got to the point where I read the dialogue and about the first two sentences of each paragraph and skipped the rest because that was the only way I could get through this.

I am familiar with this kind of writing because I attended the U of Iowa and I took classes with a lot of the Workshop writers. I read a story that got a writer into the Workshop (no easy feat). It was a 23-page story about two minutes in someone's life. Reading it was like watching a soap opera. Or watching paint dry. This book reminded me of that. For me, it's about the suspension of disbelief. I live in a book while I am reading it and I can't do that when I am annoyed and distracted by a writer's attempt to make every sentence a present wrapped up in a pretty bow at the expense of the story.

As I said, the author knows how to turn out a nice phrase. I even like his characters and the story is good. But he beats the reader into submission with the sheer volume of expostulation. I really wanted to like this book, but I absolutely did not.
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