Author: Tom Perrotta
Year: 2011

Given to me as a gift, I had never heard of The Leftovers before, nor had I heard of Tom Perrotta.  When I found out what it was about, I was very intrigued; a ‘rapture’ occurs in the present day and millions of people from every nation and faith just disappear.  Sounded cool, and I like sci-fi/fantasy/post-apocalyptic themes.  But I underestimated the depth and focus of the book, as it goes far beyond the single event that caught my attention.
The story focuses on the small town of Mapleton, a very normal, suburban community.  It is hit hard by the ‘rapture’, as is almost every city in the world.   The mayor, his family, and the residents of the town are all touched by the event in some fashion, and deal with the consequences in one way or another.  They must come to terms with their losses if they ever hope to move on with their own lives.
Perhaps I should have known from the title, but The Leftovers was about just that; the remaining people, not the event, not the search for the cause.  It was, in all ways, a character book, following the lives of those left behind and how they chose to cope with fear, abandonment, guilt, all of the emotions that confused and tortured them.  Those who enjoy character study and dialogue will enjoy this book, but don’t expect much action or suspense.  The causality takes place offstage, leaving readers to sort through the effects.
My rating: ✰ ✰ ✰ ✰

By ochippie

Writer, Critic, Dad Columbus, Ohio, USA Denver Broncos, St. Louis Cardinals Colorado Avalanche, Duke Blue Devils

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