Lauded as his #1 favorite book of the year, Stephen King advised President Obama, in the pages of Entertainment Weekly, to pick up Michael Gruber's previous book, The Good Son. With an unforgettable hero, The Return is as exciting and provocative as Gruber's best work.
The real Richard Marder would shock his acquaintances, if they ever met him. Even his wife, long dead, didn't know the real man behind the calm, cultured mask he presents to the world. Only an old army buddy from Vietnam, Patrick Skelly, knows what Marder is capable of. Then a shattering piece of news awakens Marder's buried desire for vengeance, and with nothing left to lose, he sets off to punish the people whose actions, years earlier, changed his life. Uninvited, Skelly shows up and together the two of them raise the stakes far beyond anything Marder could have envisioned.
As Marder and Skelly head toward an apocalypse of their own making, Marder learns that good motives and sense of justice can't always protect the people a man loves. A range of fearsomely real characters, from a brutally violent crime lord to a daringly courageous young woman, a roller-coaster of twists and turns, and a shattering exploration of what constitutes morality in the face of evil, Michael Gruber has once more proven that he is "a gifted and natural storyteller" (Chicago Tribune) and shows why he has been called "the Stephen King of crime writing" (The Denver Post).
"Starred Review. Thrilling and compulsively readable." - Kirkus
"...the emotional center feels off; Marder faces death with aplomb, but his jaunty tone is jarring. And, in both his Vietnam flashbacks and the action in Mexico, salt-of-the-earth locals are mere vehicles for a rich, white guy's personal journey. Gruber can be great (as in The Good Son, 2010), but this one can be frustrating." - Booklist
"Fans of action films starring Bruce Willis and Sylvester Stallone may be entertained, but readers should be prepared for one-dimensional characters and preposterous twists toward the finale." - Publishers Weekly
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Michael Gruber was born and raised in New York City, and educated in its public
schools. He went to Columbia, earning a BA in English literature. After college
he did editorial work at various small magazines in New York, and then went back
to school at City College and got the equivalent of a second BA, in biology.
After that he went to the University of Miami and got a masters in marine
biology. In 1968-69 he was in the U. S. Army as a medic.
In 1973, he received his Ph.D. in marine sciences, for a study of octopus behavior. Then he was a chef at several Miami restaurants, a hippie traveling around in a bus and a roadie for various rock groups. After this he worked for the county manager of Metropolitan Dade County, as an analyst, then as director of planning for ...
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