Return to Me

Return to Me

Rebecca is so ready to go far away to college. When her dad moves the whole family to her new college town across the country for his new job, then immediately abandons Mom, she’s shocked. If she can’t trust rock-steady Dad, who can she trust?

She’d already decided that she must break up with Jackson before the family leaves Seattle, convinced that a long-distance relationship won’t work out. Her best friends agree with her, but she just can’t do it.

When Reb gets an overwhelming sense of something about-to-happen, she learned long ago to keep it to herself. She will be able to use her innate sense of whether a space works or not as she studies architecture, following in the footsteps of her dad’s business-minded family.

In the too-large McMansion in suburban New Jersey, far from their cozy island home and Reb’s custom-built treehouse, she watches her mom crumble as Dad makes the separation permanent and sees her 10-year-old brother retreat ever further into himself. After Reb calls Grandpa for advice, he invites them to his Hawai’i home to restore themselves.

Perched in a tropical treehouse, Reb worries about Jackson, about whether she really wants to do commercial architecture, about whether she really wants to go to college at the end of summer.

What’s this prophecy that women of her family can never stay with the men they love?

How can she balance family expectations about her career with what she truly wants to do?

How hard must she shake her phone so that Jackson will start communicating again?

Separation and reunion, perception and reality – Justina Chen once again brings readers a story with the right ending in a complex real world.

Recommended by: Katy Manck, Librarian-at-Large (retired academic/corporate/school librarian), Gilmer, Texas, USA – blogging young adult books beyond the bestsellers at

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