Book Review – The Leftovers by Tom Perrotta

Have you ever wondered what would happen if someone you love, or people you work with or see on your commute every day just vanished? Well, that is the concept for The Leftovers in a nutshell, on October 14th ‘The Rapture’ happens and a vast amount of the population just simply disappear leaving others behind to try and rebuild their lives.

The central story follows a number of characters, all interlinked in some way and their unique experiences after the rapture and how they are reforming their lives and moving forward. Some storylines are focused on more, like Nora whose husband and two children have vanished leaving her totally lost and watching SpongeBob Square Pants on loop and Laurie, a wife who left her remaining family post the rapture to join the strange cult the ‘Guilty Remnant’. The GR as it is referred to throughout the book is a collective of people who believe it is a lack of respect which led to the rapture. The rituals of the cult are incredibly strange from forced smoking to staring at people from afar – I found this storyline intriguing but difficult to relate too which is no surprise!

Overall I enjoyed the novel, at first it was difficult to keep up with the various story lines as it jumps around quite a lot and if you put the story down for any length of time but stick with is. As far as the ending goes I maybe was expecting something a bit more explosive, however I did feel that all of the stories were wrapped up nicely.

I also found that the book at times really made me think, and to a point I think it touched on some interesting aspects and experiences with grief. Nora for example, feels very guilty and thinks back to things she has taken for granted. It follows Jill whose mother hasn’t disappeared but joined the GR so she is grieving someone who hasn’t gone, which brings a whole different perspective.

Overall, I would recommend giving this book a read, the stories are entertaining and at times funny and thought provoking. Not a reader, then have no fear as the book was also made into an HBO TV show which you can no doubt find online.

Until next time

Little Lemon xxx

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