The story follows the interconnected lives of the main characters by alternating between each of their versions of events. It's very interesting to get to see the same story from two viewpoints. The author had me hooked immediately, and this is one of the few books I couldn't just listen to in the car only.
Despite being inspired by Yeats's poem, this book really doesn't have that much to do with fairies. I suppose the idea is that it's a search for identity and belonging...and a LONG one. I didn't find it charming or enchanting, this is not a "Fairy Tale". It was long and slow and boring. What's more, the ending doesn't really resolve much of anything. I think this is an example of an over-hyped book that just leaves you feeling flat in the end. Don't bother with this one.
I'm a web designer in Southern California that loves a good thick book - especially epic fantasy, sci-fi, and contemporary thrillers. My favorite authors include Stephenson, Erikson, and Sanderson.
This is one of those... if you could only download one audio book... books.
It's important to note that this book seems to transcend genres... in a way crossing elements of the book "Peter Pan" and many other pseudo-fantasy novels with strong notes of Americana like the film "Stand By Me" or the Wonder Years... it truly is a great summer read, or listen in this case.
The narration is nothing short of excellence; Unlike some downloads that I've found here where the narration is awkward or the story ill suited to be read aloud, this book seems to have been written for the spoken word, much like Orson Scott Card's book "Ender's Game"... and naturally the dual narration is perfect for the dual narrative form of the story.
The Stolen Child was an easy, yet engaging listen that you'll probably breeze through over the course of a week, as it's a "pageturner" and you'll want to sneak in every minute of the day that you can to listen to it... I don't listen or read to many books more than once, but I'm sure that I'll be returning to this one in a year or so and will definitely pass it on to my kids when they're old enough and adult friends alike.
I picked this book because its premise intrigued me. While the moral of the story was mostly satisfying, getting to it took perserverance. The story dragged at points and it often seemed that the author strived too hard to be literary instead of focusing on writing a tight manuscript and telling a good story. This would have worked better as a short story rather than a novel. I did, however, like that the recording used two readers.
My family ( 3 boys- 11,9, 7)and my wife just listened to it on our drive to and from vacation. The sample on the Audible website got us hooked. We all felt that it was a really interesting story line and had never read or listened to anything like it. However, towards the end of the book, it became a bit longwinded and took away from the initial excitement that we had. For the younger listeners, there were some 'adult' passages (first sexual experience for example) and we just fast forwarded through those parts. Only a few "bad" words were heard.
I would recommend this to family and friends that like this particular genre.
Fantasy, once a genre all its own, has so encroached on Sci-Fi they are often counted as one. As a traditional Sci-Fi fan, I am not at all sure this is a good thing. In my now distant youth (alas!) the best Sci-Fi was packed with with both adventure and meaning. The latter could take the form of alegory, or philosophy, or social commentary, or show the unsuspecting where science and technology were taking us. Today, it seems I always feel cheated. What is this book about other than the fantastic events of the story? There is nothing except, perhaps, a tad of titillation with the fantasy, and I cannot help but association that with the fantastic, which in my day was virtually synonymous with absurd.
The story to me was very haunting and sad. I think it was beautifully written but you definitely have to be in the mood for it.
I am not a fantasy fiction fan. In fact I had looked at this book and passed it up once or twice because I assumed it would be fantasy to the point that I could not suspend disbelief. This novel takes an idea idea out of a fairy tale and then totally grounds it in reality. I couldn't stop listening, and believing these changelings were really out there. Excellent book.