The writer never tires of describing the space around her so you always feel as though you're included. While the writing follows a predictable cadance the story concept is not a believable one. I found that it was hard to beleive a large drug company would allow so much "hands off" in the management & R&D of this new drug. Parts of the story after half-way through were laborious to listen to. The romantic ending was totally unexpected & with all the descriptive rhettoric throughout the story I felt that little was given to this tender monent. It feels as though the writer runs out of steam & just wants to get the story over in about two chapters. Overall, the writer has a gift for descriptive characters and scenes. The narrarrator was soft spoken & seemed to do a good job at drawing her character from the descriptions given.
I was going to give this book 5 stars. It was interesting, clever, and engaging. The setting in the Amazon was different and the characters were quirky. It lost a star based on the last 10 minutes of the audiobook. The heroine did something that seemed out of character and disrespectful and then the book abruptly ended. It left me feeling disappointed.
Doctor working for pharmaceutical company treks to Amazon to find the body of dead cubicle-mate, who went to the Amazon searching for doctor's former heartless medical school professor who ruined her life, but is now working on a cure for menopause. With a plot like that, a lot could have happened. In fact, it doesn't. The story got a little goofy --- Martins, Raps, martinets -- and then it got unbelievable, reminding me a little of Jurassic Park when science goes strange. The reader is excellent and kept the book entertaining. The characters were interesting --- Marina was a little too Pollyanna-ish, but Dr. Swenson was a tough old bird and very easy to like. The book gets more stars because of her. I wish the book had just been about her. And I jwish the plot had been more realistic.
I enjoyed State of Wonder and would suggest that if readers enjoyed Avatar (the new 3-D movie) AND African Queen (the old b/w movie) there is a good chance they will like this book. Ann Patchett's novel takes the reader into darkest, buggiest Amazon and also to a jungle forest with seemingly magical powers. A fine, solid work of fiction and a terrific listen for audible.com subscribers.
I really enjoyed this book right up until the very last chapter. The descriptions and character development are wonderful. It feels like the author just gave up on the story line and decided the book was simply over.
I'm glad a lot of people enjoyed this book, but to me it is the second most boring book I have listened to. The idea behind the story was great, but the story could have been told in two hours.
Ann Patchett is one of my very favorite authors, and on the whole this reading was pretty good. If your name is Marina, however, as mine is, be prepared for a constant mangling of the name. And since, as the main character, her name comes up A LOT, this was like a constant grating static. The reader could not stick with one pronunciation. How hard is it--really?! "Marina" like a boat marina. Get it straight.
I thought I would like this book. The narrator was wonderful.. the book?? not so much...too many loose nds.. too much "description" and not enough why's and wherefores.. yes we know it is HOT is the Amazon.. yes we know there are bugs and snakes.. but cannibals who don't eat anyone?.. women chewing bark ( yes bark) off of trees to be able to have children at 70.. gezz keep me away from that stuff.. I would rather have malaria than have to listen to this again
I loved Ann Patchett's Bel Canto and liked The Magician's Assistant, so I was prepared to enjoy State of Wonder. I wasn't however, expecting to be drawn into the story so utterly. I wasn't prepared to listen to what was one of the best books I have ever read. I can't recommend it highly enough.