I've been meaning to read The Returned, by Jason Mott, and the beginning of the series Resurrection based on The Returned seemed like perfect timing. The series is only three episodes in, but so far there is very little similar.
The Returned are specifically people who have come back from the dead. These Returned recall their last moments, but all they remember from there is waking up again. The story focuses on the Hargrave family, Harold and Lucille, and the return of their eight-year-old son Jacob, who had died fifty years before. (In between every chapter is a mini story of a Returned person's experience. These stories gave small insights into how the Returned felt or how the True Living - those who never died - reacted, but didn't really add up to anything in the end.)
Soon the Returned begin to rise in number, frightening many people just because of the unnaturalness of it all and causing the government to act. The government forms a bureau whose job it is to round up the Returned and keep them locked up in a camp of sorts. With the large number of returned being shipped in, the Hargrave's town is soon taken over by the government and the True Living are soon living as sad and confusing a life as the Returned kept inside the fenced areas.
I kept waiting for an answer. A why or how this was taking place. When I was fifty pages from the end and still could not see any glimpse of an answer forthcoming, the story began to fall flat. Even with some action popping up at the end, the answers themselves still never came. And as mysteriously as the Returned appeared, they begin to disappear again. And that is the end of that.
I was quite disappointed because I felt the story idea had so much potential...which is why I suppose it was picked up as a TV series. The series begins with a focus on Jacob and his family, but adds other Returned and changes some character relationships that are never present in the book. However, because of the book's absolute inability to answer the stirring questions, I feel any changes the series makes are justified and necessary. I know that sounds harsh, but I just couldn't understand how this book could end without a single word to explain it.
Has a book left you completely disappointed because it didn't live up to its potential?