Hero is back home sooner than expected from his 2-year Mormon mission trip to Japan. He’d been gradually deteriorating for weeks until his psychotic breakdown on a train.
His ex-girlfriend heroine is also back from her 2-year mission trip and wants to reconcile with him but he distances himself from her. He believes he’ll make her life miserable.
It grieved him to break up with her 2 years before. But her persistence in faithfully writing to him during the last 2 years gave him hope for a future together. But his recent psychosis changed things.
It’s not so easy to stay away from her when there are so many reminders of how good she can be again for him. Memories of their high-school romance, seeing her around town, having her best friend constantly check on him, and numerous town residents encouraging him to take her back & resume his life like before.
As he sees himself worsening mentally like his schizophrenic mother, he prepares himself & the people he knows for the worst. What will make him change his mind about having heroine in his life?
This Tippetts book is like a chick-lit book for college-aged men. Is there such a thing? The book is told from Hero’s POV(point of view). It’s about his journey towards making sense of his life now that he’s back in town after being gone for 2 years & having had his first psychotic breakdown. More of the book is devoted to his new relationships with various people in their town, including heroine. And they’re mostly about how his new mental condition is affecting or will affect others. The cop who used to arrest him as a teen, family members of disabled patients he used to take care, & his distant relatives are all dealing with the question of his future mental well-being. So we learn quite a bit about how he sees himself & the people around him.
Hero’s romance with heroine is secondary to his life story. I know that this book follows the first story when heroine was still in high school. I haven’t read that book & this book didn’t spend that much time with her. So I never got to know heroine all that well. It probably didn’t help that Hero tried to keep away from her as much as he could. So she wasn’t featured in a lot his present interactions with people. There are more scenes with him and her best friend. I knew her best friend more than I knew her. What I know about her is mostly from secondhand information via her best friend, her brother, & Hero watching her from a distance. She is forgiving, caring, & determined and seemed like a great person to get to know. I just wished I connected with her more & got to know her more directly.
Sexual chemistry with heroine is minimal. Sex scene is only generally mentioned & towards the end. A PG-rating.
I carefully recommend this book.