I am not sure why I did not expect much from this book, but it was thoroughly enjoyable. It was not up to parr with a Richard Russo story but follows similar lines. The main character is a bit of a screw up and does not deny or hide from that. He is estranged from most everyone he has ever loved. Then his daughter confides in him. Shortly after that they both have a decision to make. The story is told well, narrated wonderfully, and keeps you interested. The ending is superb.
I did enjoy the story and characters very much. Jonathan Tropper is gifted at creating characters who, though flawed, are also compelling. I found it easy to root for Drew Silver. The story kept me engaged, the dialog is witty and realistic, and even the lesser characters are well-drawn and interesting.
I found John Shea's narration aggravating and very distracting from the story. It was like listening to Captain Kirk with a pack-a-day smoking habit. The gravely, raspy voice I could handle, although I didn't love it -- it's a bit weird when narrating an 18-year-old girl, but managing every character convincingly is a challenge with any audiobook. The part I couldn't get past was his tendency to deliver. Every. Line. With strange, seemingly...irrational pauses. I suppose it was intended to add drama, but it was just extraordinarily distracting. It interrupted the narrative flow and made for strange interpretation, giving emphasis to odd points in sentences. It was a lot. Like. Captain. Kirk. narrating a book... about a MAN. And... His DAUGHTER. If I could recast the narrator, I would choose Kristoffer Tabori, because he is my all-time favorite and capable of narrating a wide variety of characters with easy diversity.
I think I would recommend reading the book instead, since I found the listening experience strange.
Loved hearing the voices of the different characters. Made it all the more interesting as a story.
My favorite character was Silver. The classic underachiever who has to come to grips with his issues
The party at Jeremy's house. Everyone gets a BIG surprise in different ways.
As you listen to this book you can't help but start to feel that you know this main character like a friend and when the book ends you feel as if you've lost one. I couldn't stop listening and rooting for him the entire time. You'll grieve when it's over.
Listened to it on a car ride, it was a good story but somewhat perdictable.
Made me laugh in spots.
It's real, ugly & painful, yet still beautiful. Just like life, not always what we expect, but worth it!
Casey, definitely the bright light and redeeming character that brings everyone else together.
The richness and brokenness of the characters.
Any scene where the main character doesn't realize he's speaking out loud. I can just feel the humiliation when he realizes it and the wistfulness about not being able to say what one really feels.
I would deny it if someone I know asked me, but just between us, I love this guy's books. They are slick, witty, superficial yet somehow meaningful in a Nicholas Sparks (but with an intellect) sort of way. I loved The Book of Joe and This is Where I Leave You. But what's up with these narrators? Are they just...affordable? Tropper deserves more than this. Scott Brick should have read all of his books. Tropper has earned that.
The narrator was horrible. He has the voice of an old man, yet the character is early 40's. He reads this with way too much inflection. It just doesn't go along with what is being said.
I kept wondering whether I might have liked this book if I had read it, or if there was a different narrator. Hard to tell. The story was not that great. I love Tropper, but this was very sub-par.