Amidst all that there is the reality of a 29 year old woman having to revisit her teenage self with the wisdom her "real" age brings. Having to negotiate school days and the drama of teenage friendships as well as the practicalities of pretending not being able to drive or mistakenly blurting out that Patrick Swayze has died. Understandably Rita finds this both amusing and frustrating, while all the while she aches for the husband and daughters she knows await her in the future.
While there are some elements of the movie "Back To The Future" in Returning, it is, overall a deeper and more thought provoking exploration of time travel and how past events impact future and how choices made at one age can create a myriad of possible realities. What I did find a little unbelievable was some of the things that Rita had supposedly forgotten. I know I certainly remember my parents' attitude to drinking and things that happened at school at that age (even after two decades). But that is just a minor quibble.
Returning is a very well written debut novel for Francesca Suters. It has an easygoing style that is very engaging and kept me engrossed from start to finish. It also prompted me to wonder how I might live my teen years again, which was thought provoking in itself. I look forward to the sequel, as this story is by no means finished yet.