The concept of the imaginary friend to a small child was interesting enough to keep me listening, although I did listen on fast speed to keep the story moving. Although the book didn't grab me like it did other people, I was interested enough to keep listening to see where the author was taking the characters.
I enjoyed the interview with the author and Mrs. Gosk at the end.
The story had an interesting premise but it was written like a children's book. I understand it's written from the perspective of a child's imaginary friend but the author didn't have to keep repeating himself like he was talking to a child or explain simple things like what the book Pinocchio is about. I only finished it because the underlying mystery was just interesting enough that I wanted to see how it ended.
Something much more sophisticated. I listened to The Nightingale right before this and loved that book. I'll be going back to historical fiction or maybe a biography.
The first encounters with Oswald. They went on forever.
Can I get my credit/money back?
This a fabulous story from a very creative viewpoint; an imaginery friend. Budo is the delightful narrator and he is pitch perfect the whole way through. The last few chapters had me on the edge of my seat and silently screaming "GO GO GO!"
This was a wonderful book & portrays a "spectrum" boy, along with his imaginary friend, very well & very lovingly. I had a few imaginary friends & they were real; this book explains how & why they were/are.☺️
My three "issues" w/this book are the fact that the narrator cannot pronounce many very common English words (& I'm not talking about the portrayal of some young child who might not know correct pronunciation) & didn't even bother to learn the tune of the ONE song he had to sing (a very well-known song from elementary school. Anyone who took piano should know it, as well. YouTube it, Mr. Brown!!!), plus the fact that I'm not sure who this book's main audience should be. It is narrated by an imaginary friend who is quite a bit older than the human he's friends with.
An adult narrated this (oh! - #4 "issue"😛), yet the character wasn't supposed to be an adult. I won't rate the narrator down because it was someone else's choice to use an adult to represent a (I'd guess) 12-15 year old. It should have been one of the number of very good young narrators I've heard during my Audible tenure. The whole time, however, the story is as if he (the author) is teaching or speaking to very young children (5-7 years old, I'd say...maybe even 4-7), explaining things as if to this very young child (younger than the protagonist, who's 8). The moral points he makes that the reader is supposed to learn from are also focused towards children in a manner appropriate for them, but a leeeetle young for us adults...yet much of the material is decidedly not appropriate for young children.
Children old/mature enough for the material would, I believe, balk at the "voice", the small-child-focused didactics, and I don't think many teens would be well-pleased, either. I still found the story charming & well worth my time. I've given it four stars (I have to not want it to ever end, for 5 stars), which should demonstrate that I think this is a very good & worthy book, with an intriguing/appealing story. I really DO suggest you listen to this...just know that the "voice" of the tale is written as for a young child, yet it is an adult or older young adult book.
But c'mon - we all know imaginary friends are real, don't we?!?!?!
Elementary Teacher, Coffee Lover, Cross-Stitcher, Audiobook Addict
I chose this book because I felt like Budo was such a unique protagonist and I liked the sound of Matthew Brown's narration. Overall, I'm glad I took the plunge and listened, because Brown's performance *did* turn out to be spot-on. The story, on the other hand... not as much. The very promising beginning (including Max's laugh-out-loud brilliant tactic for dealing with a bully) turned into a solidly suspenseful tale during the build-up to Max's kidnapping and Budo's subsequent efforts to save him. As the climax approached, however, the story began to slide into sentimentality, complete with overwrought emotional exchanges between the imaginary friends and an all-too-predictable existential crisis in the protagonist. That style would be fine in a young adult novel, but it's clear that Dicks isn't aiming for that demographic, and it comes across as clunky and unbelievable to adult eyes/ears. Personally, I could have done without the epilogue, as well---I would have preferred for Dicks to have resisted the temptation to wrap things up so neatly---but that could be considered a matter of taste.
The short of it? Brown's narration and the quality of the first 3/4 of the story make Memoirs a worthwhile listen. Just don't go into it with your hopes *too* high; despite its promise, Memoirs ends up just being slightly better-than-average.
This is my granddaughter's picture! She is my love.
This story, at first, made me very uncomfortable. The narrator sounds like a small child. I thought I was listening to a book written for teens or younger. After checking the details of the book again, I kept listening. I began to feel I was becoming part of their lives and I wanted to protect everyone. The Asperger Syndrome may be part of this story, but only a small detail. This is the story of a vulnerable child that is lonely and often misunderstood. The story is told from the imaginary friend's point of view. This is one book that I will not soon forget. I wish I could convince everyone to get this book. It is truly magic!
I am a 73 year old man transported back to heroic tales of childhood and was scared, afraid and anxious reading this wonderful tale. The cry for happy ending will keep me happy for a month.
I love Budo. His unconditional acceptance and love of Max is heartwarming and inspiring. Yes, I know he's imaginary, but that doesn't make him any less real. (You'll see.) Matthew Dicks created one of the most charming, lovable characters I've ever met. He injects humor, warmth, and an insight into what it's like to be "on the spectrum" as well as the challenges for those who love someone "on the spectrum". This is a beautiful story... alternately funny, heartbreaking and thought provoking. (Great narration, too!) Do yourself a favor. Even if you don't have an available credit, buy this book. It's THAT good!
Yes, I would listen to this book repeatedly just for the performance of the narrator. It's not just that he creates a unique voice for each character, he actually creates the characters. The way each character is performed suggests that he spent some serious time thinking about their complexity and motivation. Many wonderful actors can play a single part extremely well- this one plays dozens of parts extremely well all at once.
As for the story, it was charming and original, if at times a bit awkwardly paced. The subject matter has been done, but certainly not from this angle. The author has found a way to explore the autism spectrum both intimately and objectively- from the point of view of somebody who understands the child inherently and has a window on his life that isn't open to any other person. This is not necessarily something I would have originally purchased in written form because I normally like my reading to be a little more fast-paced, but something about the narration moves the story along and engages me with it to the point that I would now certainly buy the hard copy.
This story has several endings, but at the ultimate ending, I felt warm, happy, and relieved... but at the same time, the ending felt a little forced, as though the tone did not match the tone of the book.
Hands down, Budo was my favorite performance. After all, we hear the entire story through his voice and Mr. Brown makes him a truly loveable guy with interesting thoughts and a beautiful character arc. I think what the actor managed is to bring both a genuine youthfulness to the performance- as might be expected from a small child's imaginary friend- along with insight, responsibility, and wisdom that comes from somewhere else entirely.
I would of course like to have dinner with Budo, the most individual imaginary friend in the world... however, since he is not -my- imaginary friend, I would essentially be dining alone. Because of that, my next choice would be Mrs. Gosk, the wonderful teacher. I would like to meet the woman who is so intelligent, so creative, and so loving that she manages to reach and understand every one of her students on an intimate, personal level... even a child with moderately severe autism.
Even if you think it's not your thing, even if you normally read galloping crime novels or intricately woven fantasy universes or voluminous biographies, give this a listen. You won't regret it. That is, if you have retained anything at all of your childhood imagination!