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Return to Paradise

(Leaving Paradise #2)

4.03  ·  Rating details ·  32,808 ratings  ·  1,496 reviews
Caleb Becker left Paradise eight months ago, taking with him the secret he promised to take to his grave. If the truth got out, it would ruin everything.

Maggie Armstrong tried to be strong after Caleb broke her heart and disappeared. Somehow, she managed to move on. She's determined to make a new life for herself.

But then Caleb and Maggie are forced together on a summer tr
Paperback, 291 pages
Published September 1st 2010 by Flux
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Average rating 4.03  · 
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 ·  32,808 ratings  ·  1,496 reviews

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Sweet, fun, entertaining.. I'm glad I read it!
After reading "Leaving paradise" I was so disappointed that I didn't really want to read the sequel. The first book started so damn good but it was just ok by the middle (except some good parts), and then it ended in such a hurry - I understand why, but i still don't like it. I just couldn't relate to the story at all (I know a lot of people loved it, I just wasn't one of them).

But today I read (and finished) "Return to paradise" and it was really g
Dec 08, 2010 rated it it was ok
What to say, what to say . . .

I enjoyed Leaving Paradise, but not as much as I was expecting to. So, when starting this, my expectations weren't very high. And because of that, they were met.

I just don't like the characters or the story, for that matter, nearly as much as I do with Ms. Elkeles' other works (her Perfect Chemistry series is awesome!). It's not that I disliked this, but I won't be reading it or it's predecessor ever again. So, I guess take that how you want to.

I still love Simone E
Annie Brewer
Jan 31, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Everyone who has ever wanted to give up in life
Recommended to Annie by: Maida
OMG! That was the most beautifully poignant book ever!!!! God, I'm such a cry baby!!! It ended perfectly! It had such a beautiful message and left you feeling so good. I am so happy for Caleb and Maggie!! Leah stepped up her game in this one and really surprised me! I loved her! I loved Lenny and Julio and Trish and Damon once again impressed me and Lou was awesome!! I loved everything about this book. I've been on such a Contemp kick that these stories move me beyond words. I am crying from hap ...more
Jul 23, 2012 rated it liked it
I'm in the minority here, but this book was just okay. It's not that the writing was bad, but there wasn't much of a story. The same issues that we saw in Leaving Paradise were re-hashed over and over again in this one. I'm not quite sure why there was even a second book. I love Maggie and Caleb but found myself getting annoyed with them and their lack of ability to commit.

My take...lengthen the first book by 50 pages or so and call it a day!

Love the author's writing style and I look forward t
My first official read of 2017 (though technically speaking I started this last year). My overall impression is that this narrative had some good points and some very bad points (keywords: rampant cliches and overly drawn out drama), but overall left a neutral impression on me. I think once the story got back to the main plot conflicts, I found a path to follow through the novel to the very end. Plus the audiobook narration was very good on the parts of Elizabeth Cottie as Maggie, and Nicholas M ...more
Feb 11, 2018 rated it liked it
3.5/5 Stars

Unfortunately ‘Return to Paradise’ wasn’t any better than ‘Leaving Paradise’.

I still didn’t feel a connection towards the Maggie and Caleb and didn’t like how they behaved towards each other in this book.

But I really liked the ending, I found it very cute.

I did enjoy this book but I don’t love this series.

I would still read the ‘Perfect Chemistry’ series as I have heard a lot of good things about it but I did hear good things about these books as well and I was left disappointed,
Oct 07, 2010 rated it it was ok
After becoming accustomed to brilliance from this author, this one was really disappointing.

I think what bothers me most about this sequel to the amazing Leaving Paradise, is that I don't think the author stayed true to the characters. Caleb was simply awesome in Leaving Paradise. Yes he had issues and was angry, but never with Maggie. He treated her with kindness, concern, and respect the entire book. It was his attitude towards her that melted my heart and allowed me to care about his charact
I don't know what it says about my attention span, but the one thing I am hung up on in this book is the phrase in the last chapter that reads: "Please wait until the aircraft has come to a complete stop before deplaning." a word?!

According to the dictionary before me, 'deplaning' is:
- a verb
- means 'to disembark from an aircraft'

But apparently only awesome people in Simon Elkeles' world get to here their flight attendants say the word 'deplaning'. I have been on approximate
I loved this as much as the first book, but I'll admit there was some frowning when I found out Maggie and Caleb were in the same group (convenient much?)

I love this couple, they are so sweet and cute together and it almost makes my heart bleed. I want what they have, screw the cheesiness of the entire thing.

Oh and Simone: Please, never stop writing books. You never let me down.
1.5 stars

Honestly, I just didn't get what the point of this book was?

Really - why did there need to be a sequel when it had no strong plot? I would've preferred to just leave it at the first book without the last chapter that lead into a sequel.

I loved caleb in the first one - but in this I just didnt get him and his motivations at all. seemed contrived for the sake of drama. And despite being inside his head for most of the book - I still didn't get why he behaved how he did towards Maggie and
Jan 02, 2011 rated it did not like it
A complete and utter travesty. 1.5 stars. Now, i'm not one to dislike books due to mature content, but I felt as if the only real purpose of this book was to let us all know how much Caleb and Maggie wanted to get into eachothers pants. Completley rushed, unnecessary characters and plot events were major problems and, to top it off, we had a constant ridiculous battle between the two - 'I love you', 'we can't be together','let's just have a quick snog before we go back to biting eachothers heads ...more
Mar 18, 2010 rated it really liked it
For fans of Leaving Paradise that wished for an alternate ending, Return to Paradise is a must read. This second and hopefully final installment provided the ending that I felt Maggie and Caleb deserved in the first book.

There were parts of the story that felt a bit contrived, but despite the rough patches in this book, I really enjoyed it. The HEA did take a scenic route with poor moves and actions by both main characters, but in the end, it all came together quite nicely.

The book does contai
OceMei Belikova♥
For Maggie, LOVE is. . .
"I don't want us to just 'want' each other. I want a real relationship with a guy. Love. And you don't even know what love is. Love is honesty. Love is a mutual respect for one another, something you and I don't have.

For Caleb, LOVE is. . .
Love isn't about honesty. It's about protecting the people you love from things that will hurt them. That's love.

I really enjoy myself reading this. (read my review for the first series of Leaving Paradise ,here : Leaving Paradise,#1
Wendy Darling
I think Gayle Forman has ruined all other realistic YA fiction for me. I liked Leaving Paradise well enough, because the idea of a girl forgiving a boy who hit her with a car is an interesting set-up...but after reading such beautiful, emotional books as If I Stay and Where She Went, Simone Elkeles' work feels fairly contrived and lacking in depth. A lot of this book just didn't make any sense to me, either--what kind of camp is this exactly where Caleb and Maggie are forced to be together? Wher ...more
Mar 01, 2010 rated it really liked it
I feel so much better now that I've read this book. I loved the first one but I was annoyed that we didn't get the closure that was very much needed.
This, was much better.
Caleb and Maggie never had the ideal relationship to begin with and things aren't looking to good when these two meet up again eight months later.
Feelings are hurt-repeatedly, Games are played-repeated and I really wanted to knock these two heads together-repeatedly.

Caleb, at first was pretty much your standard jerk with an ext
Jun 10, 2010 rated it did not like it
I was so happily surprised (and intensely affected) by Leaving Paradise that I couldn't wait to start in on the sequel, the inevitably titled RETURN TO PARADISE. Honestly, I loved Maggie and Caleb so much that I savored the thought of them back on the page together, dealing with the awkward and ambiguous place they were unceremoniously left in at the end of the first book. Naturally, snagging an ARC of RETURN TO PARADISE was pretty high up on my list of things to do at BEA. And I hadn't even rea ...more
Donna {Book Passion For Life}
Posted on:

After finishing Leaving Paradise I was so excited to start this book…. I headed for it straight away. I was really worried that I would be disappointed with it, just because I’d hear a few negative reviews but it’s safe to say……Simone Elkeles has done it again and completely blown me away again. Wow! Just wow!

Return to Paradise starts 8 months later meeting Caleb in trouble. When he’s been arrested and faces jail time, Caleb has known one else to
Apr 03, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This was great! I had been a little disappointed in the first novel, so I'm really happy about this one. Luckily, what I was missing in Leaving Paradise was delivered by Elkeles in Return to Paradise. The tension between Maggie and Caleb was tangible and convincing. I finished the book within a few hours. ...more
Zemira (Kylo Ren fangirl) Warner
Feb 17, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: fans of realistic YA romance
I loved Leaving Paradise series more than Perfect Chemistry. I know,everyone is like "What?". I mean,I liked the bad-boys-Alex and Carlos,but still somehow this story was just more appealing to me.
I felt more connected to Caleb and Maggie and to their life.
S.E.writing is so beautiful.
Eva ☆
Jan 29, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Liked the first one more but this was great

Rating: 5 Stars.
Steam: 5 out of 10.
Triggers: (view spoiler)
Love Triangle: (view spoiler)
Cheating: (view spoiler)
HEA: (view spoiler)
Liza Wiemer
Apr 12, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This is an outstanding sequel to LEAVING PARADISE! I couldn't put this book down. I rarely would describe a novel as exquisite, but it fits. Once again, Simone Elkeles draws the reader in by alternating between Caleb and Maggie's narration, and it works beautifully.
RETURN TO PARADISE is a richly written, emotionally charged novel that will leave you satisfied, but also wishing that the last page didn't come so quickly.
What makes Simone Elkeles's books (including this one) so fabulous is the rea
Feb 20, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I finished this in one day just like the other one. I am so proud of myself.

There were some problems though.

Caleb royally annoyed me. He threw everything they did back at Maggie using the blowhorn. Jesus, who does that? He mocked everything and said they slept together.

Me: Can I slap him?
(I invisioned how to do it too)

He was such an ass in this book except for the ending though. He was much more cruel to Maggie in this book and it angered me. He wanted to end it with her even though she admitte
Leanne Crabtree
Meh...I guess I was expecting more romance and a grovelling Caleb after the way he left her in the last one and we didn't really get that. No it was all arguments and then apologies and then more arguments.

If I'm honest I was going to give it two stars up until the epilogue, and then one bit bumped it up half a star or so because Caleb from Leaving Paradise appeared and made good on something he said in the first.

As for some of the other characters. They really grew on me, Lenny definitely had b
Dec 07, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2019, 2013, books-i-own
This was a great conclusion. I enjoyed these books a lot and this wrapped up really well. I like that Maggie really comes out of her shell and stops pitying herself. She knows what she wants and she is working towards it. Caleb is trying to figure out his life and I think he matures a lot throughout this book. He takes responsibility for his actions and finally goes for what he wants. There is drama and hurt feelings, but the drama makes the romance that much better. This was a quick read and th ...more
Mar 14, 2015 rated it did not like it
Shelves: dnf, audiobook, 1-star
Fun fact about me: there is one book plot that I don't read. If a book contains it, I stop reading immediately, and this book contains it.
Boy and girl break up. Boy and girl want to be with one another but refuse to tell each other. Therefore boy decides the only way to get over girl is to have sex with every other girl he sees to help him forget. Girl is left heartbroken. (and here I'm assuming this will follow the pattern) Girl and boy end up together, girl having "forgotten" all the different
Peep (Pop! Pop!)
I gotta admit that I really wanted to like this one. Now we all know that Simone Elkeles can write some really good cheese and like any crazy person, I tend to like her cheese. I really, really liked Leaving Paradise. It drew me and had me floored. Return to Paradise didn't really do anything but bore me... and I didn't even want it to be that way! We get treated to lines like:

If he doesn't come back to you, he wasn't yours to begin with.

I swear to you I am not kidding! Yes, that line? That is s
Jul 06, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Teens; Elkeles fans
Recommended to Tatiana by: Jackie from Goodreads
This was a roller coaster story that immediately picks up eight months later from when Caleb disappeared from Maggie's life, never once contacting her, his family or friends in all that time. And now - he's back.


Caleb is barely living his life legally in Chicago, holding down a menial job by day, and sleeping in a drug den by night, not able to sleep and chase away his personal demons, and he cannot get Maggie out of his mind. Although Caleb has nothing to do with his roommates i
Jennifer Wardrip
Reviewed by Randstostipher "tallnlankyrn" Nguyen for

Leaving Paradise, Caleb Becker thought he would have a better life, even if it meant letting go of Maggie. Yet Caleb still finds himself in trouble, once again not being his fault. With the departure of Caleb, Maggie Armstrong waited and waited for his return. As the days went by, the chances of reuniting with Caleb seemed non-existent. So Maggie decided that she would become stronger, to become more independent.

As if fate had
Sarah Marie
Return to Paradise by Simone Elkeles

Second in the Leaving Paradise series

3.5 stars

Return to Paradise picks up eight months after Leaving Paradise. Vowing to keep a secret that could destroy everything if the truth got out, Caleb Becker left Paradise eight months ago and left the he loved, Maggie Armstrong. Now Caleb is in trouble and he has a choice to either participate in the Re-START program or go to prison. Maggie’s tried to forget about Caleb, but when they are forced to participate in RE-S

Jul 02, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Can I just let out my emotions real quick? Okay, thanks.
Okay. Breathe, Courtney.

Simone Elkeles has done it ONCE AGAIN! I read Leaving Paradise after Perfect Chemistry some months back. I remember thinking how much I enjoyed Simone's writing style.
It was very different from other stories I have read. And for that, I was grateful.
None of that long, drawn out descriptions. Simone kept the story going with real language anyone can relate
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Rossetti Quarter ...: Setting-time,place,background info, and conflict 2 2 Mar 15, 2015 08:11AM  
Rossetti Quarter ...: Characterization 4 5 Mar 06, 2015 12:51PM  
Rossetti Quarter ...: Connection 1 4 Feb 25, 2015 05:22PM  
Rossetti Quarter ...: Symbol 1 3 Feb 25, 2015 05:16PM  
Rossetti Quarter ...: 5 internal & external conflicts 1 1 Feb 25, 2015 05:08PM  
Anyone else think her series are great? 10 61 Nov 27, 2014 09:08PM  
book review 2 14 Mar 12, 2014 04:18AM  

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Simone Elkeles is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of novels for teens. Simone’s books have won many awards including being YALSA Top Ten Quick Picks for Reluctant Young Adult Readers, being named to the YALSA Popular Paperbacks and Teens Top Ten lists, and added to the Illinois “Read for a Lifetime” Reading List. Simone also won the coveted RITA award from the Romance Writers of ...more

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“My brain tells me it will be better to just let him go.
My heart... not so much.”
“If you tiptoe into cold water, you're missing out on the rush of plunging in headfirst.” 193 likes
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