Just when 17-year-old Cullen Witter thinks he understands everything about his small and painfully dull Arkansas town, it all disappears. Tinged with melancholy and regret, comedy and absurdity, this novel finds wonder in the ordinary and emerges as ultimately hopeful.
When I started seeing rave reviews of Where Things Come Back from my fellow book bloggers I knew that this was a book I had to read. Everything about it sounds like a book I would adore. I love smart, quirky books with male narratives. Unfortunately, something kept me from absolutely loving this book.
There were several things I really enjoyed. I liked Cullen. His insights were entertaining and I really liked his odd daydreams of zombies and such. Gabriel, Lucas and all of the secondary characters were really well done. I actually liked everyone–usually characters are what hold me back from loving a book. I loved the southern small town aspect of the book. Being from an extremely small southern town myself that was easy to relate to. The author captured that well.
What I didn’t like was the pacing. This book is just a little over 200 pages. You would think that would be a super quick read. It wasn’t for me. Not much happens…which is kind of the point, I know, but I was the tiniest bit bored. There’s a lot of thinking in this book and not a lot of doing. It was just a little tiresome for me. I loved, loved, loved how everything came together in the end. I thought John Corey Whaley’s writing was great. I’m looking forward to reading more from him in the future, but Where Things Come Back just wasn’t for me.