Everything We Left Behind by Kerry Lonsdale is the sequel to Everything We Keep. At the end of the first book, James wakes up from his fugue state confused and with no memory of the prior years. Everything We Left Behind picks up right after the first book with James trying to figure out who he is. Is he James or Carlos? The point of view switches back and forth between James in the present and Carlos in the past, as he tries to rebuild his life once again. But now he has two young sons who only know him as Carlos and a sister-in-law whom he has falling in love with…as Carlos. James must also learn how to let Aimee go, who has moved on with her life. Meanwhile the threat of his brother, Phil’s, release from prison is hanging over his head. His other brother, Thomas, is trying to unlock his memory, convinced that he has very important information locked in his brain somewhere. Will Phil try to come after him? How can he protect his sons? Will he ever remember what happened? Will he be able to rebuild his life?
Everything We Left Behind wasn’t as exciting as Everything We Keep. I waited for the drama with Phil and Thomas which didn’t live up to my expectation. However, I enjoyed the drama and struggle as James/Carlos struggles with his memory as he comes to terms with his life. I only know the basics of how fugue states function, it was interesting to see how Ms. Lonsdale portrays it in this book. Your heart breaks for James as he comes to terms that the life he knew is gone forever and it breaks for Carlos as he knows that he may cease to exist and memory of his life in Mexico will be erased. The story was dramatic and intense as the family must rebuild itself. The end of Everything We Left Behind gives a hint that this story isn’t quite over yet. I look forward to the third book, Everything We Give, which is set to be released next summer. I recommend Everything We Left Behind. If you haven’t read the first book yet, I highly recommend you read it first. You will not be disappointed.
Everything We Left Behind
is available in paperback and on the Kindle