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Undeliverable Paperback – December 15, 2013
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The Amazon Book Review
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"Demarest's writing is sharp and witty." ~ Portland Book Review
About the Author
Rebecca A. Demarest is a graduate from Willamette University and Emerson College. She has had stories published in various journals and this is her debut novel.
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Top customer reviews
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The chapter introductions were novel and well placed, providing another "character" that we never actually meet. I do wish there had been a bit more development of some of the other characters - Ben and Sylvia are really the two that we come to know and understand, but there are so many others that I wish we had gotten to know - Ben's wife, for example. Also, I'm wondering what happened to all Ben's other connections in his previous life. It's alluded to that he just sort of up and leaves it all behind, but we don't hear about any loss of friends or family other than his wife. Surely there are others that would be checking up on him just a year after his son went missing? Inclusion of such details would have added additional layers of complexity and richness to the story and its characters.
All in all, my critiques are small ones, though. I enjoyed the book and would recommend it for its novel setting and storyline that I'm sure is all too familiar to parents with missing children. I'm interested in the sequel that other reviewers have noted, and I'll keep my eyes out for it.
The setting of the Mail Recovery Warehouse is a backdrop that I have never seen and found myself wanting to learn more about the process and what they do in that area of the government. That being said, I found the characters there a bit of a caricature, and wanted it to be two separate stories: one about Ben and his search for his son through his use of his work systems, and one just about this warehouse. I would read the manual that was used to introduce each chapter, so clever!
I am intrigued by Ben and his relationship with his wife, I wish that there had been a little more development of their history. I appreciate that he develops a connection with Sylvia, his coworker, but I didn't find myself believing how close they got so quickly.
There is a sequel in the works, and I can't wait to see how they continue to grow, and where the search leads them. Kudos to the author for tackling a difficult subject, and for giving a portion of her proceeds to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.
Although I did enjoy the story – I found I struggled a bit with the pacing. Most of the really gripping action was left for the last few chapters. It was a slow burn to get there, and while the ended was, in my opinion satisfactory, it wasn’t the biggest payoff.
As far as the characters, I was thankful for Sylvia’s sense of lightness and levity – she adds bright spots into a pretty heavy subject matter. Some of the others fell a bit flat and ornery including Mr. Grant himself. The personalities seemed to be building on the old cliché that postal workers are going “postal.”
I do however, applaud Ms. Demarest in providing a voice for those who may be in this horrific situation and remind us that although the news story may end – the struggle continues.
I look forward to continuing Ben’s story and reading whatever is next from the author.
Ben's dad's devotion to finding him is real and commendable, showing us repeatedly how many things we lose when we lose someone we love. As a mother of three young children, I could only hope that I would have his strength to continue looking when law enforcement lets the case go cold. Ms. Demarest does a beautiful job of putting words around this topical and heartbreaking experience that we read about all too often in the news.
I look forward to the sequel and encourage you to read this debut novel by a very talented author. Most importantly, for each purchase of Undeliverable, a $1 donation is made to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children to help fund the efforts to bring missing kids home.