I expected this to be an environmental tale, but it was more firmly the tale of how a small-town woman feels about children, men, family in general, and being "stuck" in a socioeconomic class she has never 100% identified with. Kingsolver spends a huge amount of time rehashing women's issues that have been beaten so hard for so long in Oprah's Book Club that the dead horse is only bones. The actual environmental theme is interesting, somewhat original, well thought out, and apropos. The writing is extremely high quality if you can slog through another explanation of why a woman is bored in her marriage and stuck in it due to bad teen decisions. All male characters are flat and only presented from the myopic perspectives of the semi stereotypical women. That said, the female characters are fairly well developed, if also commonplace. Overall, the book is an OK read, probably best left to women who strongly identify with semi-traditional female emotional perspectives. I'm betting that Flight Behavior was probably on Oprah's list nearly immediately.
Barbara Kingsolver is by far the best author/narrator I know. Being a southern appalachia native, I so appreciated her authentic accent in this story which takes place in the Tennessee mountains. And her writing is as beautiful as her voice. But the situations that make up this story, both environmental and relationship, were unrelentingly depressing.
I am happiest with a story in my ear. I earn my living as a strategist and work hard as a mom of 2 boys. I'm 45, mixed race, Black & Jewish.
I listened to this full book twice over the course of the last two years because it was so engaging...and I imagine I'll listen to it again at some point. Classic Kingsolver: well developed characters, flawless prose, and an insight into the natural world. Even the narration itself is beautifully accomplished.
This is my second audio book written and narrated by the author. I belief this audio book is in part exceptional because the author herself narrated it. Barbara Kingsolver tells such a compelling story that I had to remind myself that it is fictional and not a biography of some sort. I appreciated most her authentic use of biblical quotes without the superficiality seen so much in the world today. They often left me smiling and nodding in agreement. I hope to one day meet my favourite author and also see the King Billy.
A more interesting story. This one was repetitive and even the end promised a life where nothing new was ever going to happen to the characters.
Barbara Kingsolver's profession is writing. She should have allowed a professional to do the reading and maybe that would have put some life into a dull story.
She simply read it and her voice is not dramatic. She did not act it out.
I kept waiting for something to happen and was disappointed that nothing did.
I believe this book was a best seller because of the author's reputation. I don't remember writing a review for this site previously, but I was motivated to do so because of the other reviews I read about this book. One writer agreed with me but I think everyone else read a different book!
Say something about yourself!
I think anyone who listens will immediately think of Kingsolver's performance of Ovid. Certainly, it was entertaining and interesting to hear Kingsolver perform what she was undoubtedly hearing as she wrote the words.
As far as my favorite character, I'd have to go with Dovey. Oh, Dovey.
There is a sheep birthing scene that is particularly moving. Kingsolver has a talent for making the potentially mundane meaningful.
Barbara is a very good reader. I don't often care for author narration. But this book couldn't be read better.
The story line of the Monarch Butterflies
This book should be required reading for everyone. Her descriptions are great and her portrayal of East Tennessee life is spot on.
Kingsolver often speaks profound truths couched in casual conversation. I am looking for a printed version of this book so I can underline those sections as I did in her book, Poisonwood Bible.
I was pleased with how she handled the voices and accents. Very professional.
Can we send Sarah Palin a copy? She might be able to understand climate change then.
I loved Barbara Kingsolver as narrator. Her Appalachian twang, intonation, and emotion were perfect. I must admit I listened at 1.25 speed which helped immensely.
There was more to the book than just a plot. The author clearly researched her subject and it was an interesting learning experience,