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Download The Return Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample The Return Audiobook, by Joseph Helmreich Click for printable size audiobook cover
0 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 5 0.00 (0 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Joseph Helmreich Narrator: Paul Michael Garcia Publisher: Blackstone Publishing Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: March 2017 ISBN: 9781504757195
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During a live television broadcast on the night of a lunar eclipse, renowned astrophysicist Andrew Leland is suddenly lifted into the sky by a giant spacecraft and taken away for all to see. Six years later, he turns up wandering in the Sonoran Desert, thin, bearded, a ghost of his former self. Upon his return he denies ever having been abducted, refuses to cooperate with the government or media, and disappears from the public eye, supposedly becoming a hermit somewhere in the woodlands of the Midwest.

Meanwhile, much like J. D. Salinger, Leland inspires legions of cultish devotees, including a young physics graduate student named Shawn Ferris who is obsessed with finding out what really happened to him. When Shawn finally tracks Leland down, he discovers that he has not been hiding in the woods—he’s been on the run for years, continuously hunted by a secret organization that has pursued him across multiple continents and is determined to force him into revealing what he knows.

Shawn soon joins Leland on the run. Though Leland is at first reluctant to reveal anything about his experiences in space, Shawn will soon learn the truth about his abduction and the real reason for his return and will find himself caught up in a global conspiracy that puts more than just one planet in danger.

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Quotes & Awards

  • The Return dazzles with a deceptively simple premise that houses a complex, tricky suite of revelations.”

    B&N Sci-Fi and Fantasy Blog

  • “The plot takes some clever turns…and Helmreich’s characters are satisfyingly multidimensional.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “Paul Michael Garcia gives a steady narration of this audiobook made of equal parts science fiction and suspense…Garcia brings an even, unruffled level of energy to Leland, capturing the timid man as someone who is easily manipulated. In contrast, Garcia’s portrayal of Shawn embodies a restless energy that pulses with an intellect easily bored but tenacious in tracking Leland down and uncovering the conspiracy in which Leland has inadvertently become involved.”


  • “A great book with a fascinating premise. I couldn’t wait to see what happened next!”

    Chris Kuzneski, author of The Prisoner’s Gold

  • “A fast-paced science fiction thriller that’s as easy to read as it is intelligent. Highly recommended.”

    Jeremy Robinson, author of Infinite

  • The Return is as intelligent as it is thrilling. Helmreich is a masterful storyteller, weaving a surreal and convincing tale of speculative fiction reminiscent of Ursula K. Le Guin…A stunning first novel.”

    Joshua Gaylord, author of When We Were Animals

  • A Barnes & Noble Most Anticipated Science Fiction Debuts Pick of 2017
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About the Author

Joseph Helmreich has contributed writing to Every Day Fiction and New York Press. He is a graduate of Rutgers University and worked on film and television projects before becoming a script reader for the Weinstein Company. In addition to his writing, Helmreich is also a voice-over actor and a member of the alternative folk duo Honeybrick. He lives in New York City and works in film distribution.

About the Narrator

Paul Michael Garcia, an AudioFile Earphones Award winner and former company member of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, received his classical training in theater from Southern Oregon University, where he worked as an actor, director, and designer.