Friday, May 6, 2011

Reunion by Jeff Bennington

Title: Reunion
Author: Jeff Bennington
Genre: Supernatural Thriller
Publisher:  NexGate
Publication Date: 1st May 2011
ISBN: 9780615443683
Stand alone or series: Stand Alone
Pages: 336 pages
Book Received from: Author (Proof Copy)
First Lines: David Ray stood in front of his mirror, dressed to kill.

David Ray killed eight students and then turned the gun on himself. He thought the shooting and suicide would fix his world. It didn't. The massacre threw Tanner Khan and the other survivors into chaos.

Twenty years later, Tanner and his fellow classmates reluctantly agree to hold a reunion to lay the past to rest. Although they suffer from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, they come back to their hometown and reunite in the defunct school building.
Old flames are rekindled, fears are ignited, and their lives are about to explode in a whirlwind of memories, haunted by the spirit of David Ray.

Once they're inside the school, they discover that a dark entity has joined them. It has come to collect a debt, long overdue, and someone has to pay. Will Tanner and his classmates overcome their fears, putting the pieces of their lives back together, or will they be consumed by their worst nightmare?

My Thoughts:
When Jeff approached me to read Reunion, I was excited.  The cover was creepy and after reading the synopsis I was pretty much sold on the story. 

The one thing that surprised me was the beginning.  Why write Reunion?  Once reading that I understood why a book like this needed an explanation.  I'm glad Jeff Bennington took the time to write this story, while there are supernatural elements throughout, it does make you stop and wonder.  What happens to survivors?  How do they pick up their life after something horrific happens.

Bennington has done an amazing job at creating three dimensional characters who are flawed and realistic.  At the beginning we are given an idea of what each character is like at that stage in their life.  The lives they live, the goals they want to achieve, their relationships etc.  Jump forward to twenty years after the shooting, we get to see what each survivor is up to, whether they are doing what they dreamt of, who they're with, how they are coping etc.  Then bang, one former student has the idea for a reunion.

Reunion is a gripping read that will have you turning pages quickly to find out what happens next.  It is an entertaining novel but it also touches upon school shootings and the effects it has on those that survive. You're guaranteed to take more away from this book than just an engaging story!

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