Summer Reading

Where Things Come Back

Character analysis

In the book Where Things Come Back by John Corey Whaley the book is mostly about a 17 year old boy named Cullen Witter. Cullen is a very smart, young, energetic, timid, and sometimes pessimistic youth of the town of Lily, Arkansas. Cullen has to face many challenges throughout the book one of them being that his younger brother, Gabriel, 15, disappears. Cullen, at one point, is almost psychologically torn apart by this event to such an extent where he starts to hallucinate that he is talking to a bird that knows where his little brother is. He starts to become accustomed to everyone coming up to him sincerely apologizing about his brother. His best friend Lucas Cader also becomes a little crazy about the disappearance in the beginning but they both learn to live with it as the book goes on. During the first few weeks after the disappearance Cullen is very pessimistic because he thinks his brother may be alive but then convinces himself that he is dead. Cullen is energetic in the sense that he is actively looking for leads himself to track down his brother. He even busts into his next door neighbor's house in the middle of the night because he thinks that his neighbors were keeping his brother hostage. He is timid in school where one of the only people he talks to is his previously mentioned best friend Lucas.


Two things that keep the plot going in the book, Where Things Come Back by John Corey Whaley, are characterization of the characters and the setting for the characterization to well and develope into a plot. The characterization brings about a lot of the things in the book, such as the family's continuous hopes for finding the missing child, Gabriel. The setting definitely contributes to the plot because it keeps being referred to throughout many points in the book. The characters always say that Lily, Arkansas is a bad place to be at the time that everyone is excited about a discovery of a bird that hasn't been seen since the 1940's. The characters always say that Lily is a black hole and once you get sucked in, you can't get out. The major event that happens in Lily, when a man thinks that he saw a bird (the lazarus woodpecker) that has been extinct since the 1940's, only furthers the plot with the people of the town being the way they are, over infatuated with the media about the bird and losing interest in the missing boy. This makes for an interesting story when everyone but the Witter family and their close friends forgets about Gabriel and becomes over hyped about something that may or may not exist.

Review I Guess

I would recommend this book to anyone. This is a very interesting book to read because it makes you think and it uses very good imagery. The author uses good language and creates an intrinsic story line. The way the characters are in the book makes it better to understand it because the way they speak and the way they act makes you have a feel for those characters and lets people relate to them. This is an overall good book and an easy read because there is lots of suspense that keeps you turning the pages.