Remember Me Like This Summary & Study Guide

Bret Anthony Johnston
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Remember Me Like This Summary & Study Guide Description

Remember Me Like This Summary & Study Guide includes comprehensive information and analysis to help you understand the book. This study guide contains the following sections:

This detailed literature summary also contains Quotes and a Free Quiz on Remember Me Like This by Bret Anthony Johnston.

Remember Me Like This, by Bret Anthony Johnston, is a story about a family struggling to deal first with the abduction of their son, Justin, and later with his return. The story starts while Justin is still missing. He had been missing for four years at this point.

During his time away, his family experienced many feelings of defeat as they searched for Justin without success. Each family member dealt with these feelings in a different way. When Justin’s parents receive a call from the district attorney saying that there has been a development in the case, they rush to the police station in Corpus. They had been called under similar circumstances several times during the last four years to meet with runaways, kidnapped boys, and deceased children who had similar characteristics to their son.

Justin's mother, Laura, is concerned that this will be another false alarm. Happily, it is not, and their son has been brought to the police station, along with his abductor, Dwight Buford. After a medical exam for Justin and a meeting with Mr. Garcia, the district attorney, the Campbells are able to bring Justin home. The family is instructed not to ask Justin questions about his time in captivity. Justin is also required to meet with a social worker/counselor who hopes to help him readjust to life with his family.

The Campbells are overjoyed to have Justin back in their home. Each member of his family tries to spend quality time with him without doing anything to remind him of the tragic circumstances that he encountered while he was away. Just as they are all becoming optimistic about their family becoming whole again, they are informed that Dwight Buford will be released on bond. His rich father, Mayne Buford, is posting his bail. As soon as they find out this information, they begin to worry and all of the progress they’ve made halts. No one in the family wants to upset Justin and make him worry about Buford being out of jail. Likewise, he doesn’t want his family to worry, so he tries to seem calm and unaffected by this event.

While Dwight Buford is out on bond, he remains in the house of his parents. Justin’s father, Eric, parks near the Buford home and spies on the house to ensure that Dwight is not roaming about. Mayne Buford, who is a previous acquaintance of Cecil's, Justin’s grandfather, has discovered that his home is being watched and asks Cecil to make Eric stop. Mayne also asks Cecil for the opportunity to go out on his boat with his wife and son one last time, and he will convince Dwight to plead guilty and save both families from the agony of a trial. At first, Cecil is enraged and doesn’t want anything to do with making a deal. Once Cecil realizes that his son and the entire family are in jeopardy of being ruined by fear, Cecil and Eric devise a plan to make the agreement with Mayne. However, what Mayne doesn’t know is that the Campbell men don’t plan to let Dwight get on that boat at all. They acquire guns and plan an ambush for early the morning of the boat excursion.

When Laura, Eric’s wife, suspects what is about to happen, she asks Cecil to call it off. She explains that their family has been through enough hurt, and this would make things worse. Cecil waits until the last minute, then tells Eric that it’s not a good idea, and they need to let the courts handle the situation. Cecil neglects to tell Eric that he intends to carry out the plan without him. While waiting in the marina, Cecil is met by Mayne who proceeds to inform Cecil that his son, Dwight, is missing. They have no idea where he is, and there will be no boat ride.

As the Campbell family is getting ready for the end of the summer Shrimporee festival, Mr. Garcia calls to inform them that the body of Dwight Buford has been found dead; the cause of death is drowning. The suspicion is that Dwight couldn’t handle the pressure of the trial and committed suicide, maybe by jumping from the Harbor Bridge which connects Corpus to the Campbell’s town of Southport. With this news, the family is relieved and is able to go the festival feeling safe and secure. They now know that their lives will only improve from here on.

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