From the Wall Street Journal bestselling author of Everything We Keep comes the highly anticipated sequel. Told from one man’s two perspectives, Everything We Left Behind effortlessly blends suspense, mystery, and romance in an exploration of loss, resilience, and the compelling need to protect the ones we love at all cost.
Two months before his wedding, financial executive James Donato chased his trade-laundering brother Phil to Mexico, only to be lost at sea and presumed dead. Six and a half years later, he emerges from a dissociative fugue state to find he’s been living in Oaxaca as artist Carlos Dominguez, widower and father of two sons, with his sister-in-law Natalya Hayes, a retired professional surfer, helping to keep his life afloat. But his fiancée, Aimee Tierney, the love of his life, has moved on. She’s married and has a child of her own.
Devastated, James and his sons return to California. But Phil is scheduled for release from prison, and he’s determined to find James, who witnessed something in Mexico that could land Phil back in confinement. Under mounting family pressure, James flees with his sons to Kauai, seeking refuge with Natalya. As James begins to unravel the mystery of his fractured identity, danger is never far behind, and Natalya may be the only person he can trust.
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This is book two in the series and should be read in order. You can read my review of the first novel here.
Everything we left behind was a great book, an interesting follow-up the original story. Most books in a series like this tend to follow the same characters throughout, so when I started reading the first, I expected all three books to be told from Aimee’s point of view. However, the second story takes place in two different time periods and from dual perspectives: Carlos’ POV, picking up immediately after Aimee’s visit to Oaxaca, and James’ POV, in the “present day”, in a post-fugue state.
This is a family drama, a who-dun-it. There is mystery, a little bit of romance, and single parent shenanigans.
My favourite part of Kerry Lonsdale’s writing is that she creates flawed characters, flawed people. There is no one in her story that is wholly good or wholly bad, and each person struggles to find their way through such impossible situations.
I am very excited to read the final book in this series, and will start listening to it soon, although at this point, I have no idea whose POV it will cover as James’ story seems to be completed. I am guessing it will be about Phil, or possibly Thomas?
I listened to the audiobook, narrated by Timothy Andrés Pabon, who had a lovely accent. I enjoyed listening him and plan to listen to the last in the series as well.
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