The Leftovers

  • Release Date:     ISBN: 14921021425331927
  • Genre: Literary     Publisher:
  • Print Length: pages     Language:
Score: 3.5 0 5
3.5
757 Ratings

The Leftovers Book Summary

A New York Times Notable Book for 2011
A Washington Post Notable Fiction Book for 2011
A USA Today 10 Books We Loved Reading in 2011 Title
One of NPR's 10 Best Novels of 2011

What if—whoosh, right now, with no explanation—a number of us simply vanished? Would some of us collapse? Would others of us go on, one foot in front of the other, as we did before the world turned upside down?

That's what the bewildered citizens of Mapleton, who lost many of their neighbors, friends and lovers in the event known as the Sudden Departure, have to figure out. Because nothing has been the same since it happened—not marriages, not friendships, not even the relationships between parents and children.

Kevin Garvey, Mapleton's new mayor, wants to speed up the healing process, to bring a sense of renewed hope and purpose to his traumatized community. Kevin's own family has fallen apart in the wake of the disaster: his wife, Laurie, has left to join the Guilty Remnant, a homegrown cult whose members take a vow of silence; his son, Tom, is gone, too, dropping out of college to follow a sketchy prophet named Holy Wayne. Only Kevin's teenaged daughter, Jill, remains, and she's definitely not the sweet "A" student she used to be. Kevin wants to help her, but he's distracted by his growing relationship with Nora Durst, a woman who lost her entire family on October 14th and is still reeling from the tragedy, even as she struggles to move beyond it and make a new start.

With heart, intelligence and a rare ability to illuminate the struggles inherent in ordinary lives, Tom Perrotta's The Leftovers is a startling, thought-provoking novel about love, connection and loss.



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The Leftovers - Tom Perrotta Reviews

  • Reverse Review

    By Moak Tokerson
    3
    Unlike most movies that are viewed but do not attain a higher level of readership, I expected that after the series the book was going to be better, not so. My agenda was to see if the author could offer a glimpse, or a [between the lines] narrative prescription to what viewers who were trying to understand what they were seeing.
  • Boring

    By Munson11
    1
    I watched the tv show and when the last season was over I said I wanted to get the book and learn a little more about the story. That didn't happen. The show is way more entertaining then the book. The book leaves you searching the Internet wondering if there is a part 2 of the book. When I got to the end I was like "wow that was boring"
  • Meh

    By Carmesi
    2
    One of those rare cases where the movie/show is actually better than the book. Yes, it does well at making social points to coping with loss, living with depression, and religious influence, but just lacks a good story. HBO seems to agree and have taken a few liberties to correct this, and they were right to!
  • I really liked this book! 👍👍👍👍📖😃

    By lisalisa49
    5
    First of all, this book isn't about all the people who disappeared in the Sudden Departure, it's about the people who were left behind; The Leftovers. Don't read it expecting answers about what happened because it's not about that. I loved this book. I read it in two days, and I could hardly put it down. The story is based around the lives of the people in the Garvey family of Mapleton, and what happens in their lives during about a year period three years after the Sudden Departure. It's amazing to see just how this unexplained global event changed these people's lives, and yet they need to find some way to move forward and create a new life...without having any answers as to what happened on October 14th. The people who are left behind really struggle about how to move on without their loved ones. The Sudden Departure changed every aspect about how people live their lives. Overall, I was entertained and intrigued by the entire book. There were also parts where I laughed and cried. I think it's really interesting how the author leaves the readers in the dark about what happened to all those people in the Sudden Departure, I think it really lets you feel just how the people in the book are feeling about what happened to their friends and loved ones. I actually really like the ending. I feel like the future may be looking hopeful. I hope there is a sequel, just because I want to know what happens next in their lives.
  • The Leftovers

    By bizeybee
    3
    Ummm, I don't know. I liked some parts of the book and not others. I think the ending was a bit abrupt. It is an easy read though, flows nicely. The main characters are well defined, you feel like you get to know them. The subject matter of "The Rapture" keeps you guessing. You don't know what is going to happen. (No spoilers here.) :) Over all I give the book 3 out of 5 stars.
  • Unfinished

    By ArcStone
    3
    Compelling premise provides wide canvas for exploring social issues through interesting and sympathetic characters. The subplots in the book are enough to keep the reader wanting to find out what happens next with each of them. However what is revealed in each case does not feel like resolution. Understanding that the author purposely raises questions for all to contemplate, an opportunity seems missed for greater exploration of the issues at hand, in a more expanded way through what could of been a more gripping and perhaps slightly more elaborate storyline. The ending feels cut short. As if the author just became tired of the story itself and decided to abruptly end it. Frustrating. Unfinished.
  • Good start, no finish

    By Leftovers left no ending
    2
    I thought the premise was intriguing and hooked me into buying it, despite the many reviews that warned this book had no good resolution. I kind of hoped that those reviews were misguided and were missing the nuance that could come from this type of scenario; after all what story like this could possibly be expected to have a neat and tidy ending? But it turned out to be very pedestrian and flat, and I almost wonder, with the writers background in screenwriting and the recent advertisement for the HBO series of the book, that it perhaps is no accident that the open ended, uninsightful finish (I turned a page that turned out to be the last, I literally thought there were several chapters still to go) that there was no need to offer resolution. Or even to bring any sense of closure at all. Great for a tv premise, but really horrible for a novel . Unless the author plans on making this a series, in which case, screw that. I want a story I can purchase and get something from at the end.
  • It's Ok.

    By Rachel Wookie Jones
    3
    It's well wrote, but nothing ever happens. Characters are very like able. The ending was terrible.
  • Seriously STUPID ENDING

    By Lorib ell
    3
    Ok, so it's getting to the end of the book and you think there are like 30 pages left... And it just abruptly ENDS with a bunch of notes for book clubs afterwards. I read this book because I saw it's going to be a tv show and it looked interesting- the book is interesting but poorly ended.
  • Ugh

    By A Little Know-It-All
    2
    This is an incredibly intriguing premise: the Rapture happens and then life goes on. Unfortunately, the book really doesn't. The characters, while approachable, are largely two dimensional. The writing is a little flat and stripped down for a published author. And the plot? Having just finished it, I can't really say there is one. The author does a pretty good job of building a post Rapture world, then let's his characters loose in that world and...nothing. The characters don't evolve. Nothing really changes. Things are alluded to but never followed up. The HBO series doesn't have a high bar to clear.

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