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124 E Washington, Ann Arbor, MI 48104 | 734.585.5567 | email@example.com | M-Th 10-9 | Fri & Sa 10-10 | Sun 10-7
This gem of a debut novel tells the story of the bizarre and heartbreaking summer before Cullen Witter's senior year of high school. It begins with his cousin's death from a drug overdose, and includes the sighting of a thought-to-be extinct woodpecker and the attendant media frenzy. Just at the height of the furor, Cullen's sensitive and gifted younger brother disappears. The twist of an ending makes you consider how chance encounters can change your life.— From Deb's Picks
"Every now and then a book rises to the top. Where Things Come Back soars. Keep your eye on author Corey Whaley. That is, if you can see the stratosphere."
-Ellen Hopkins, New York Times bestselling author of the Crank Trilogy
“In this darkly humorous debut, Whaley weaves two stories into a taut and well-constructed thriller…Vulnerability balances Cullen's arch sarcasm, and the maelstrom of media attention lavished on the woodpecker offers an element of the absurd, especially when juxtaposed against the mystery of Gabriel's disappearance. The portentous tone and flat affect of Whaley's writing is well-suited to the story's religious themes and symbolism… as Whaley gradually brings the story's many threads together in a disturbing, heartbreaking finale that retains a touch of hope.”
“In a build-up that explores the process of grief, second chances and even the meaning of life, Cullen’s and Cabot’s worlds slowly intersect and solve the mystery of Gabriel’s disappearance in this multilayered debut for sophisticated readers. Unexpected, thought-provoking storytelling.”
“The characters’ reactions are palpable as their grief deepens and yet they continue to hope for Gabriel’s return. Cullen is an eloquent, thoughtful narrator…the ending is worth the wait.”
"The author has managed to capture his characters’ feelings of loss and despair with both compassion and empathy. The plot is extremely well thought out and encompasses the tangle of teenage relationships, friendships, and life experiences using humor and thoughtful language...authentic, small-town teenagers; and the main protagonist, Cullen, is well-developed and convincing. An unexpected ending brings about a moving close to the novel."
“What will hold readers most is the moving story of Cullen’s beloved younger brother, who suddenly goes missing, leading to mystery, heartbreak, and an astonishing resolution on the very last page…An intriguing, memorable offering teens will want to discuss.”
“[A] smart, darkly funny, and multilayered debut…. Whaley weaves numerous story lines and themes together with the confidence of a seasoned writer, resulting in a thought-provoking story about media, faith, and family.”