The Return ★★☆☆☆

thereturn (Custom)This review is written with a GPL 4.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at WordPress, Blogspot & Librarything by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission
Title: The Return
Series: ———-
Author: Joseph Helmreich
Rating: 2 of 5 Stars
Genre: SF
Pages: 256
Format: Digital Edition



Andrew Leland was abducted by aliens on national tv. Six years later, he is found wandering in the desert but claims to have no memory of ever being abducted.

College student, and genius, Shawn Ferris practically worshipped Leland for his ideas in whatever science they both are in. But being a Millennial, Shawn doesn’t believe that Leland has any right to keep his experience a secret. So he begins a correspondence under false pretenses and discusses theory and such stuff with Leland. Shawn then hunts Leland down only to be abducted himself by a super secret agency that Leland ran away from.

Shawn is convinced to work for them to help defend Earth against an alien invasion. But when he is chased and shot at by security for not toe’ing the company line, Shawn realizes somethin is off. On the run, Shawn is rescued by Leland and together they try to avoid detection by Ambius. It turns out Leland built a protective barrier for the aliens to keep humans out and Ambius used Shawn to reverse engineer it and figure out how to invade the aliens planet. Meanwhile, the aliens want to invade Earth to put a stop to the threat that humanity poses but they can’t because of the barrier. So when Ambius invades, they’ll be opening Earth up to an invasion as well.

Shawn and Leland kill some people, steal the artifact that it was all about and Shawn destroys the artifact. Leland realizes too late that the artifact is actually the alien he was in love with while on the planet.

The End.


My Thoughts:

What a piece of trash this was. While I noticed absolutely nothing wrong with the grammar, etc, both Shawn and Leland are Grade A jackasses. And since they are the supposed good guys, you can imagine what the bad guys are like.

Shawn is a know it all, butt hurt little prick. His insistance that Leland has no “right” to keep what he knows to himself is the epitomy of everything I despise today. Privacy, phhhh. I did not like Shawn at all. Leland was even worse though. He was super powered due to something the aliens had done to him and could almost literally walk through a hail of bullets but all he could think about was his lost alien love back on Planet X. He wouldn’t talk, he wouldn’t even try. He just wanted humanity to die. He made the choice to come back and then does nothing but wish he had stayed.

I enjoyed the idea of the story and if the characters had been more likeable or sympathetic, I probably would have enjoyed this and recommended it. But as it is, I won’t recommend this to anyone and will be staying away from anything that Joseph Helmreich may write in the future.



bookstooge (Custom)



17 thoughts on “The Return ★★☆☆☆

    1. Always glad to spare a fellow reader some wasted time.

      I just wish I could remember WHY it was on my tbr in the first place. My guess is a glowing review from someone, but I can’t be sure. That would give me somebody besides myself to blame! 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  1. The premise sounds good and the cover is pretty… but the “you owe me” attitude you mention is not something I want to see in a *good* guy. I can barely tolerate it in a bad guy. Yikes. I’ll be staying away, too. Thanks for the warning.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. One of the two main characters really needed to make me like him and both failed spectacularly at that. I deal with enough jerks in real life, without cluttering up my precious escape time with them too 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  2. When I don’t like the characters it’s hard for me to like the novel too 😂😂 Your first lines of “piece of trash” had me laughing out loud LOL yay for honesty!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have the “Trash” tag for a reason 🙂

      And the whole honesty thing was fueled by a post I’d just read where someone stated that they didn’t have any 1star books because if it was that bad they DNF’d the book. With the implication that they didn’t rate or review DNF’s. You have no idea how angry that made me. Talk about being a dishonest book blogger.

      Now I’m all fired up again. Maybe I will write that post about blogging honesty after all 😀

      Liked by 1 person

          1. One word of advice, albeit from an amateur blogger. Don’t read the reviews for your own book. Let someone else do it and use that person as a filter.

            Maybe you are the 1 in a 100 that CAN handle it. But my experience had led me to treat it like drinking. Maybe you can handle it, but why take the chance?

            Liked by 1 person

            1. I hear you, but in this case, the book got enough positive reviews that if someone doesn’t like it, I chalk it up to different strokes for different folks, etc, and I’ll get a kick out of a passionate response in either case. Also, I often agree with at least some of the points so it’s good feedback for the future. But I agree that if someone has thick skin (or the reviews are overwhelmingly negative), it’s not a great idea.

              Liked by 2 people

  3. Wow at how well the author handled your review. 🤣 A bit shocked too, but it’s nice to see this here and then. Got to admit that characters like those can be killer for the reader, but I am wondering now how annoying they are. 😛

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I was pleasantly surprised as well. I am glad that ALL my interactions with authors don’t have to be bad 🙂

      Read it and find out 😉 Maybe you won’t be annoyed at all by them.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s