Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Finding Jake (Bryan Reardon)

I picked up Bryan Reardon's moving Finding Jake after a recommendation from a trusted colleague.  I'm so glad I did because this is one novel that keeps you guessing -- you're never quite sure what to expect, which is a trait that the best books present to their readers.

Reardon makes us guess ourselves by asking us to confront a simple question -- as parents, do we really know everything about our children?  The main character Simon Connolly loves his family -- wife Rachel, son Jake, and daughter Laney.  One ordinary day, he receives the devastating news that there has been a shooting at his children's school.  One by one, each parent is reunited with their child until Simon is one of the few left waiting for news. What really happened to Jake? Did he ever really know his own son?

Finding Jake is simply heart wrenching, and Reardon wisely alternates time periods so we learn about the family's past as well. The post climax goes on a little long so as to take me out of the zone a bit, but that doesn't take away from the fact that Finding Jake really packs a punch.