Myst/thrillers and ✨fun fantasies✨are my favorites but always open for a good story.
A triple mystery and a tragedy that surround a Minnesota family in 1961. A Methodist minister, a Mother who does her best to give her children every opportunity, a beautiful young Daughter getting ready to set off on her own and two young Brothers who are best buddies and full of angst. They live in a small town where everyone knows everyone's business and the mysterious death of a young boy sets all in motion.
This story is a mind provoking reminder of how everything that happens shapes and changes our lives no matter how good or bad, small or large...... Some occurrences change us drastically over night, those life altering changes that none of us, fortunately/unfortunately, are immune too.
The author and narrator made this a wonderful listening experience. This was the first Krueger book I have listened to and it was a touching, rich, beautifully written story. Wonderful to see this story through the eyes of a young man on the verge of manhood and all of the revelations that come along with that metamorphosis.
Rich Orlow does a wonderful job with all the voices of a wide assortment of characters. His pace and timing are right on. One of the better ones in my opinion and I will look for him in other works.
A great mystery. All things have their time: birth, death and rebirth.
“It was a summer in which death, in visitation, assumed many forms. Accident. Nature. Suicide. Murder. I still spend a lot of time thinking about the events of that summer. About the terrible price of wisdom. The awful grace of God.”
Frank Drum begins his story, looking back over forty years to this fateful summer in 1961 when he was 13 yrs. old. The story is immediately familiar and the nostalgia consuming. Krueger writes poetically, creating an idyllic summer so vividly the years tick backwards. For many it will recall that well-known coming of age through tragedy, Stephen King's The Body (movie: Stand By Me). There are similarities, but Krueger's story is a murder mystery tucked into a gentle and sweet tale, focused on family, small town secrets, and spiritual struggles, more than the physical threats of big brothers, dead bodies, and junk-yard dogs.
In addition to being a New York Times Bestseller, Ordinary Grace recently won the 2014 Edgar Award For Best Novel, the 2014 Dilys Award, and has been selected as a *School Library Journal Best Book Of 2013. I'm not familiar with the author's Cork O'Connor series and can't speak to any comparison, but I found this book completely charming and captivating. Krueger's ability to create a soothing kindness through his choice of words, even in the midst of violence, death, and some (mild) sexual encounters, is remarkable. The novel deals with a multitude of *delicate* issues with frankness and compassion instead of sensationalism. Moments like the Reverend's sermon after a death (I won't spoil it by divulging the victim) are healing balms, so beautifully written they are all the *church* you could hope for.
There are some stereotypes and clichés, some sentimentality, but it all seems fresh and original, they are so well used, and so much a part of the period. You may see the ending coming, may figure out the murderer, may even question little brother Jake's keen insight, but any concerns are lost in the overall beauty and grace of this novel. It may not be the block buster everyone is talking about, but for me it was a pure pleasure reading this novel; one of my favorites of 2014.
**The School Library Journal is a monthly magazine with articles and reviews for school librarians, media specialists, and public librarians who work with young people. They have this book listed as an "Adult Books 4 Teens." I would say use your own discretion.
A beautiful story about the coming of age of 13 year old Frank Drum. Set in the 60's the book looks at one fateful summer in a small town in Minnesota - a summer that will see dramatic changes in the Drum family. The narrator was perfect and shows how important a factor this is between a great audio and a mediocre one.
An uncommon pleasure.
That's just it, I cannot compare it to any books that I have read. It stands alone in an uncommon way.
No I have not, but would very much like to again. He was terrific.
This was the first book I have read from this author. I just hope that he continues to write with the passion that obviously went into this book.
The depth of character development and the themes explored are worth the investment of time.
The themes that are explored are universal in life. The author has a deft touch in exploring these themes and is in touch with the emotions they evoke.
I laughed and cried at the beauty of the words and the depth of exploration.
I highly recommend this book to anyone who wants to explore forgiveness and grace. The author knows this subject not just intellectually but personally.
A librarian who loves to read, whether in print or in the air
More than just a mystery, this coming of age novel examines how people respond so differently when tragedy strikes a small community. While a little slow paced, and not the best at making the mystery a real mystery, the book captures a particular time and place very well, and the ways in which God' grace is present in people's lives
Say something about yourself! I am a runner and avid listener to books. Audible allow me to do my two favorite things at the same time.
As a Jew the concept of Grace is not something we theologically discuss to any great extent. Thus, I hesitated at first because of the title and the beginning overtones of the book. I was rapidly engrossed in the story and wanted to get to know the characters better. The story line, one of loss and coming of age in the early 1960's in Minnesota hit close to home even though it involved a minister's family. The story one of great pain at times was rough to listen to because I identified with Frank and Jake and their parents' at through out the story. I appreciated Krueger's ability to work with the pain and the fall out from it and the quiet love of the family. It is the journey of acceptance and integrity and moving with the pain that I loved.
It is hard to put down, well worth your time and your credits. Enjoy!
I stumbled across this book and I'm so glad I listened. I enjoyed all aspects - the unfolding of the story, the relationship of the 2 brothers, their father's calm steadiness. The narrator did an excellent job in bringing out the characters. I even looked him up on audible to check out other books he narrated. I highly recommend this book.
I can find a book to love in any genre -- a beautifully written classic, an interesting mystery or sci-fi, a trashy romance. Bring it!
STORY (historical fiction) - This story reminds me of the movie "Stand By Me." It is set in a small town in Minnesota in the early sixties and is told by Frank who, now grown, is looking back on one particular summer of his youth which was plagued with numerous tragedies. The book is very character-driven, and by the end you will know each character intimately. In small town USA everyone knows everyone's business and , when tragedies strikes, it affects the whole town. Ordinary Grace is about how this town deals with sadness and the mysteries surrounding that sadness. It is a coming-of-age story with elements of personal growth, faith, family, death, forgiveness......life.
I might have rated the book a 5, but it was a little slow getting started, in my opinion. There are two very touching parts of the story, and it's hard to describe them without giving away part of the mystery. Hints: Nathan gives a very touching sermon after someone's death. The best part of the book is the "Ordinary Grace," which is more like an Amazing Grace.
PERFORMANCE - The narrator is male. He had a pleasant voice and did a good job distinguishing between the different characters.
OVERALL - Only mild references to sex and pregnancy, and I don't recall any foul language. The book stands on its own. The story is interesting and emotional, but it's not so intricate that you have to pay close attention for fear of missing something. Recommended for all mature listeners, male or female.
Newly retired, I am a reading fiend! I like many types of books, both fiction and non-fiction, with the exception of romance and fantasy
This audiobook is a solid 4 1/2 star accomplishment--wonderful story, excellent narration. It takes place in Minnesota during the fateful summer of 1961 and is narrated by a 13 year old boy. You could call it a coming of age story but it is so much more. It is a family-oriented tale involving a minister, his wife (who has not come to terms with marrying a man who subsequently became a minister), and their teenage daughter and two younger sons, age 13 and 11. There is a great deal of townsfolk involvement in the family's life and in their story.
l am not a religious person. Although religion plays a strong role in this story, it is not shoved down your throat and seems to work very well with the plot. This story has alot of angst and sadness, but there is also a great deal of love shining through to make it seem like there is hope for recovery in the end. For me, this story is somewhat reminiscent of the Ivan Doig novels, which I have greatly enjoyed. There is a very informative interview with the author at the end of the audiobook.
This beautiful story is highly recommended! Don't miss it.