Title: The Journey Home
Author: Becky Bird
Pub. Date: February 18, 2020
Revisiting your past can sometimes be deadly…
A wayward orphan uncovers his parents’ killers with the town geek and his former BFF, unaware that unraveling the town’s best-kept secret could end up revealing an even bigger one that will change his life forever.
Sentenced to four months in Fiddlers Creek for his latest crime spree, bad boy Lincoln Laing is not happy to return to the small town he grew up in. The reason for his departure three years ago? His parents’ suicides.
As if that’s not punishment enough, his former best friend, Kenzie, who he still has a crush on, is dating his archenemy, Jack Pittman.
But when the town travel agent tells Lincoln that his parents booked and paid for a trip to France a week before their suicides, he does some digging and discovers that his parents didn’t kill themselves. They were murdered.
Desperate for closure, Lincoln teams up with Kenzie and Trevor, the town geek, to uncover the killer, unaware that unraveling the town’s best-kept secret could end up revealing an even bigger one that will change his life forever.
This will be a spoiler free review. Thank you to NetGalley for providing a free copy in exchange for an honest review.
This is my third Becky Bird novel, and honestly, I thoroughly enjoy her books. When I saw this on NetGalley, I knew I needed to request it, and was thrilled when it was approved. It’s not incredibly long, so I was able to read it in an afternoon. Regardless of the length, it’s just an enjoyable read that you don’t want to put down.
I really liked that it was basically a contemporary rom com but had a little bit of a murder mystery twist. My only complaint, and it’s small, is how abrupt the ending was. Overall, I wish the book had been a little more drawn out, but I definitely didn’t see the reveal coming, and was quite surprised.
I loved Lincoln. Loved. Him. Delinquent Bad Boy, but a softie. He had trauma and a tragic event befall him and he spiraled down a path of no good. You end up feeling bad for him, but also just wanting to hug him, and then he opens his mouth and that Bad Boy Sass comes out and you’re just like, well then.
I loved him. I don’t know what more to say.
Then you have Trevor Tanaka. Jfc, I think I loved him more than Linc. He’s the nerdy, stuttering “loser” that no one likes and everyone picks on, but omfg he’s so amazing. While it’s clear that he is a bit of a nerd, the labels people place on him are inaccurate and he’s just this amazing, quiet guy who *may* be a slight glutton for punishment. But he sees people for who they really are, and it’s adorable. He’s perfect Boyfriend Material. Hands down, I would die for him.
I liked Kenzie, but she’s pretty much a side character to Linc and even Tanaka. She fills the role of Small-Town Girl, who has fallen for the Star Jock turned Delinquent Misunderstood Bad Boy, so she starts dating the Grade A Jackass. Then when Delinquent Misunderstood Bad Boy Who Makes Questionable Choices returns, her feelings reignite, but are also clouded because he hurt her when he left, and now there’s romantic tension galore.
And her friend Bec, is Small Town Preacher’s Daughter Turned Rebel with sass and snark coming out with every word she says.
I liked Linc and Kenzie’s relationship, and how well they still knew each other, and how they had to navigate this new rift between them. But this is very much Linc’s journey, and Kenzie is only a small part, and not necessarily crucial to him finding the answers he seeks.
As for the murder mystery element to this book, I didn’t see the ending coming. I wasn’t sure who was behind the mystery, but I didn’t peg it to be that person. I felt like it was a little rushed and convenient, but otherwise, really enjoyable and surprising. Like I said, I never would have pegged it to be that person. As for the other reveal…eh. It adds another element, and I don’t really mind it, but it did kind of feel like it was added for shock value over anything else.
All in all, I really enjoyed this, and I’m excited to see what Becky writes next! I’m ready to sit down and read her next book in one sitting and fall in love with it like I’ve done all her other books so far. I definitely recommend checking this book out, and her various other books. You can check out my reviews for Slumber and Flawed if you’re interested!