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Return to Me

3.99  ·  Rating details ·  120 ratings  ·  46 reviews
What would you do if the man you loved vanished without a trace?

Kyle and Todd meet at a party in their freshman year at college. They fall in lust at first sight, then deep in love. In spite of Kyle’s melancholy past, their future together looks bright. Then Kyle disappears, leaving Todd heartbroken and alone, and their dreams in ruins. Fifteen years later, Todd is a
Kindle Edition, 312 pages
Published November 23rd 2014 by Kaituhi Press
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James Oliver French
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Average rating 3.99  · 
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 ·  120 ratings  ·  46 reviews

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A beautifully written story of love and heartbreak...
Just like that, the man I love, my first everything, the one I want to be with forever, has vanished without a trace.
(Spoiler Free Review)
GoodReads doesn't do half stars, but this is definitely a 4.5 for me.

I'm not even going to try to pretend this book didn't wreck me emotionally.
I smiled.
I laughed.
I cried real tears.
I fell in love with these two characters.
I felt the heartache and betrayal all the way to my bones...
I was left with a
Nov 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing

How do I review this beautiful, bittersweet book without giving anything away? That's the question I've been pondering since I closed my kindle down, sobbing so much that I could hardly see to read the last couple of chapters! All I can say is that I finished it feeling so moved that for a day or so after, I found myself welling up just thinking about its heartbreaking content. In fact now that I'm finally putting my thoughts down in this review I can feel myself spilling over again. I know we
Nov 11, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fr, mystery
This is not a romance. So forget that idea. Right now.

This is better categorized as a mystery, but it's emotional, intense and not action oriented enough to be a suspense. The problem is the format of the book; the first fifty percent reads like a romance. Straight up, contemporary college setting romance. A sweet double v card, new adult romance. The second half of the story disabuses the reader of that incorrect assumption. Honestly, the events in the book need to be shifted around so that
Nov 06, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: bmbr-reads

Review as previously seen at BMBR.

My update on Goodreads when I first finished reading this book was:
"Oh fuck. I don't know if I love this or hate it....I do know I want to bawl my eyes out. Rating may change. Review when I can think straight at BMBR. Someone direct me to some fluffy happiness quick smart."

A couple of weeks down the line...and I still don't know exactly how I feel. Ugh. This book KILLED me. I just can't work out if it was in a good way or not. Bear with me while I try and pull
I stopped actively reading this at 34% and skimmed the rest of the book.

This is not a review, only a few thoughts.

This is written in the first person POV, which is always a hard sell for me, but it wasn't bad. The first half of the book was a sweet boy meets boy in college story of intsa-love to a promise of a long life together. I never full connected with either Todd our narrator, nor his boyfriend Kyle, as both were a bit two dimensional for me. I couldn't find the depth in them I was
Nov 18, 2014 rated it really liked it
(view spoiler). Such an emotional read, probably because of the spoiler.
A story of two halves. The first half of the novel deals with the protagonists coming together, the love they feel for each other, the happiness and joy of a new and developing relationship. Part two is set fifteen years later as the two main characters come together
Jamie ♡♡ submits to books ♡♡
4 I Think You're Pretty Neat Stars

He whispers in my ear, "Would you like to come home with me?"

 photo PicsArt_11-01-03.44.00_zpshiyyn8g8.jpg

For the first 40% of this book is an absolute sweet tale of two men finding each other and falling deeply in love.

"Can I kiss you goodnight?
"Yes," he answers with a grin.
I lean in and kiss him softly.

Kyle and Todd are amazing together with some steamy, hot sex after losing their virginity to each other.

 photo 6a0105364a8fba970c017c326d3b39970b-800wi_zpsymzoulm5.gif

As their love matures into a future, the unthinkable happens, leaving Todd shattered and
Tamika♥RBF MOOD♥
3.5 stars.
Be forewarned people, this isn't a HEA. It is tragic, and it's not your conventional mm romance. If you do decide to read the story, please read the author's note after, It would probably make you feel better.

I didn't expect to feel this mad or pissed off. I'm saddened by some aspects in the book. Don't get me wrong, I don't need a HEA or HFN in my books. I like tragedy, cheating, murder, death and destruction that's all me. I was just shocked that's all. I felt like we came along way
Aug 26, 2014 marked it as dnr-dnf-not-4-me
Good grief. I just read some of the reviews here and at Amazon and my stomach is in knots just from those! I don't think I'd be able to handle this one, even though I'm intrigued to know what happened.

Too dark, not enough romance. Just not for me.
Nov 11, 2014 rated it really liked it
Some stories simply stay with you, some you enjoy, but eventually the details slip your memory. This is one of those stories that will stay with me forever. It is definitely an emotional, difficult read, but it found a place in my heart and will stay there. The writing is excellent, the characters real and the story heartbreaking.

I will be following this new author.
This sounds sooo good! Wish I could read it NOW.

*sigh* November 23rd can't come here soon enough.
Jeff Erno
Dec 25, 2014 rated it really liked it
I'm not sure how to go about reviewing this book. It started out as what appeared to be young adult or new adult coming-out love story. The main character, a 20 year old named Todd, tells his first person narrative about meeting and falling in love with Kyle. Halfway through the story, Kyle goes missing, and the story jumps forward in time fifteen years. At this point it appears the story is a forced separation/reunion plot, but it takes another turn into the realm of science fiction. The ending ...more
Dec 22, 2014 rated it really liked it
The author, James Oliver French, gets it right when he says, Return to Me, is a story about love, loss, heartache, and acceptance. It’s all of those things and I’ll add determination, strength, and perseverance. This story does not have what I would call a happy ever after, but it certainly has a happy for now feel to it. Mr. French is a newly published author and thanks to the world of Facebook and bloggers, I may not have found this touching story, otherwise.

As the blurb states, Todd and Kyle,
No Rating, DNF @ 30%

When the Mcs starts to become just words to me and I can't connectto them and be invested in their story, I know then that I should stop reading.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Original Blog Post: eARC Review & #Free 3Book #Giveaway: Return To Me James by Oliver French

My Rating: (5 of 5 Stars) 5
The Multiplier Rating Takes Effect

Before I begin with the review I need to point out that this is not an MM Romance even if the tag says that it is. This is a Gay Fiction with a dash of the Sci-Fi. Overall, it is a bittersweet story of the What Ifs that could have been realized but was cut short and brutally.

There are two parts to this story. The first part is narrated from
Nov 20, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: m-m
3.5 Genre Bending Stars

I had high hopes for this one. The blurb sounded sooo good. I had such high hopes for it.

Kyle and Todd are young gays discovering new love in college. Kyle knows who he is and has always known. He has a loving supportive family.

The simultaneous My Little Pony and GI Joe requests for Christmas must have confused the hell out of them.

Todd's family did not have the same reaction. They have shunned him. Cut him out of their life. With Kyle and Todd there are walks in the
Sep 02, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I haven't read many m/m books but this one absolutely blew me away. I was lucky enough to receive an ARC from this debut author and I was hooked from the first chapter.

Most of the m/m books that I've read in this genre have been erotica, and don't get me wrong the sex scenes in the book are hotter then hell, but the story is so much more than that. The author has captured the angst and passion of first love so beautifully that for me it transcended sexuality.

I don't want to give away any plot
Rainbow Gold Reviews
I knew going in that this story didn’t end on what one considers an HEA. And it wasn’t a traditional HEA, but bittersweet with the promise of one later one. I loved Kyle and Todd; they were such an adorable and loving couple, both just starting out their lives (college, virgins, life). This story isn’t for the faint of heart and I don’t recommend reading this in public as for one, you will not want to put it down so stopping for chitchat won’t do, and two, being seen throwing your e-reader might ...more
Gay Media Review
Blog Review Post:

Return To Me by James Oliver French!

In their freshman year of college is where Kyle and Todd meet. They fall for each other in the hottest sexual way and then they fall madly in love with each other. Kyle disappears and this completely devastates and crushes Todd's heart. Now jump 15 years later and Todd is a very successful psychiatrist but he leads a very lonely life. He has never gotten over his love for Kyle and how he vanished from
Jeannie Zelos
Nov 23, 2014 rated it really liked it
Return to Me, James Oliver French
Review from Jeannie Zelos book reviews
I’m struggling to review this. It’s a romance and then again its not....I do love my happy endings and this doesn’t have one...or does it? There’s a glimpse of something positive on the way for poor Todd. Overall this has a beautiful romanctic theme that ends far too soon, along with some nifty, interesting futuristic possibilities.
Kyle and Todd, the perfect couple in college, very tender and sweet, and it’s a first time
Nov 06, 2014 rated it really liked it
Title: Return to Me
Author: James Oliver French
Cover Artist: bowie15 (c)
Publisher: Kaituhi Press
Reviewer: Jay
Genre: Contemporary
Type: Romance
Pairing: Gay
Length: Long Novel
Heat Rating: 3 Flames
Book Rating: 4.25 Stars

Return to me is an emotional read that is broken into two parts. The first part, told from Todd’s point of view, is where Kyle and Todd meet during their freshman year of college. These guys fall hard for each other and then Kyle suddenly and unexpectedly disappears
Apr 28, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was one of those books that sneaks up on you. From the beginning I loved Todd and all his flighty ways. But when Kyle came into his life I liked him even more. Their relationship was sweet to watch. First loves are all consuming and theirs was beautiful and hot!! But then Klyes gone and no one knows what happened to him.
Fifteen years go by and Todd is still not over Kyle. His first love, his first everything. Todd is now a psychiatrist and doing well for himself. Helps out at the local
Blackravens Reviews
Barb Manning's Review:

Return to Me is the debut novel of James Oliver French. It tells the story of the romance of Todd Chambers and Kyle Hansen, two young men who meet during their college years. Todd is planning to go into medicine and Kyle wants to become an accountant. Return to Me reveals itself through the eyes of Todd and this may be one of the novel's shortcomings. As I read the book, I felt I never really got a chance to know Kyle. The reader sees Kyle and his life through the eyes of
Dec 09, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: angsty
I have sat and read this book in one sitting this evening and even 20 minutes later I am still a little weepy.

I don't know if I love or hate this book because it didn't end the way I wanted it to.

The book spends a long time building up to Kyle vanishing and I did find myself waiting for it to happen, but this build up did mean you felt more of the emotional connection between Kyle and Todd.
Personal 'frustration' aside this is a really good debut book and I look forward to reading more from
Andi Otis
Jan 28, 2015 rated it it was amazing
i started reading this book early this morning. i couldnt put it down and even had a hard time at work. this was very well written and i enjoyed the story. the connection i felt to the characters was incredible. i hope this author writes more, but maybe gives it a bit of happier ending!
May 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: m-m, lost-memory
I've cried so much with this pure romantic and sad story, it was worth it, it really touched me.
Bob Dias
Jan 31, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. The characters are all well written. The story is well told. A strong debut book for author. I look forward to more of his work
Kristy Johnston
Apr 04, 2018 rated it it was ok
I find the dialogue in this book to be a little too stiff. The initial romance was kind of blah and Todd’s life up to this point was maybe too much of a smooth ride while Kyle has had the opposite experience, maybe too obviously opposite backgrounds. There’s not enough complexity in the characterizations. While I admit to preferring to read about older characters, the college-age Todd was still a little too juvenile for me. I struggled with wanting to put this book down until around halfway ...more
Reviewed for

The blurb really drew me in to want to read this debut by Mr. French. I also absolutely love the cover of this book. It is a stunning representation of the story in it’s subtle simplicity and in my opinion is really just a perfect choice.

I liked Kyle and Todd a lot. They meet at a college party and hit it off right away. Todd comes from a loving, supportive family but Kyle does not. When Kyle came out to his parents, he was kicked out and disowned. Kyle is also
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James grew up in South Africa and immigrated to Christchurch in Aotearoa several years ago, where he now lives with his wonderful partner. He has been a writer since his early teens, and has written numerous screenplays and short stories for his own enjoyment. When he isn't hard at work writing, he'll either be seeking inner zen at a yoga class or trying to satisfy his insatiable appetite for good ...more
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