This book is beautifully written and performed. The story is wonderful and has the feel of clearly depicting a time gone by. There were times I laughed out loud. The characters had life and I was interested in them and their lives.
If you have never read Doig before, this is a great first read. You'll be hooked.
The author did a brilliant job weaving this story. It was a real "page turner." I loved the characters - down to earth, honorable, yet endearing and humorous. The setting felt real and the events seemed authentic. Humor, sorrow, fear, anticipation... all of these feelings that were a part of my journey through this book.
Told from the perspective of the eldest son, this story demonstrates how even during the hardest times in life, the human spirit endures. This is an uplifting story with an appreciation for simpler times.
The most memorable moment was when Oliver and his sons stopped by the grave of his first wife, so he could see if he would have the courage to tell his sons he wanted to propose to Rose.
The scene that I enjoyed the most was the scene where Morrie had the school children hold down Eddie Turley (the school bully all the students feared) so he could try out some eye-glasses on him to see if his "disinterest" in learning was related to not being able to see the chalkboard.
The character I found most memorable was Morrie. He was so out of place in Montana country, with his well-educated speech and fancy clothes. Yet he managed to find a way to fit in without becoming sacrificing his uniqueness.
I purchased this audiobook because I so enjoyed reading this book that I wanted to listen to it. I was not disappointed. The narrator did an excellent job of portraying Morrie's personality through his voice. I have become an avid reader of Ivan Doig's novels. He does a remarkable job of using language to paint the experience of growing up in early 1900's Montana, complete with all its challenges. I highly recommend this selection to anyone who enjoys listening to a well-told story.
Tangential, eclectic, avid listener... favorite book is the one currently in ear.
Told though the eyes of the 7th grade... oldest child in a family, it has a pleasing "Little House on the Prairie" feel, but written for adults. He writes the book as an adult looking back at a year in his childhood, in a one room school house, and weaves the past with present. I started this a few times never getting past the beginning, when I finally really listened and engaged... I couldn't turn it off. I love how real Ivan Doig makes prairie life with the little details; like a new haircut leaving a swath of white at the base of a neck. The "Whistling" is what their housekeeper at that time does as she cleans their home - took me a while to figure out why the title.
This was a wonderful book to listen to because it gave a view of homestead life 100 years ago. The speaker sounded like he really lived there. I would recommend this book for many reasons. Don't miss it!
My family loved this book as well as the narrator. We have three boys, my husband is a teacher, and I work in politics, so there was much that we resonated with.
The story and characters were very engaging, with enough twists and turns to keep it from being pat and predictable. The author did a great job of establishing a sense of time and place. We particularly enjoyed his insightful descriptions of the dynamics between brothers, classmates in a one room schoolhouse, and adults and children. We liked the main character and narrator Paul as he navigates the challenges of being the oldest of three brothers in a recently motherless household, as well as a 60 something MT superintendent of public schools tasked with closing down the one room school houses that were such a critical part of his own childhood.
The narrator was a delight to listen to: very evocative without being heavy handed. He did a particularly nice job with Doig's many clever and ironic turns of phrase.
This one has me wanting to look up other books by the author as well as other books narrated by this actor.
I liked it better than the print version because Jonathan Hogan read it so beautifully.
I liked the story from a young boy's perspective.
Jonathan Hogan read with ease. He was always on target with the punctuation - did not over or under emphasize. I was able to forget the reader and concentrate freely on what he was reading.
The book made me laugh and cry both.
Such a great book! The writing is engaging and the characters are charming and full of depth. The story is comforting and thrilling at the same time!
Writing reviews is work. Therefore, I need to be really happy or really unhappy with a book to write one.
I don't generally read "coming of age" or family sagas, in fact actively dislike them, had never heard of Ivan Doig, and only got the book a couple of years ago because I was going on a road trip to Montana and wanted something "suitable for general audiences." The road trip happened but the listening didn't until this spring. The first good thing I realized was that it appears to be great contemporary history, which I do like; the second was that the characters who had been dealt a very poor hand in life didn't appear to know it and were moving on through life doing the best they could and not brooding about their problems. ( I had just finished "The Old Maid" and "McTeague" (yes, in spite of my bad review I finished it), and spent both books being annoyed at the protagonists because of how poorly they dealt with serious but possibly manageable problems). But the most impressive thing is how Mr. Doig uses words in a way more like sketching than molding to create three dimensional characters who you are still thinking about after the book ends. It is slow, it is quiet, if you feel you need a little peace between the thrillers and the classics, and/or a good family road trip book, go for it.