Both the book & the narrator were near perfection. The book tells the story of Sarah Carrier, whose Mother, Martha, is executed as a witch during the Salem Witch trials. It examines the themes of mother/daughter relationships, family, community, survival & religion. Over & over again it examines its central question, what is love? Is love hard or soft, does love give freedom or restrain it? The questions & themes resonate long after the book is finished. The narrator does a beautiful job with the material, reading with subtlety & depth, covering a broad range of characters & accents. I highly recommend this book. If you are anything like me, be prepared; I cried through much of it.
At first I could not decide if it was the narration that was poor or the book. In the end, I decided that it was both. The narrator is flat, having only one emotion & no "voices" for different characters. Everything she said was in her "grave importance" voice. The book dragged, and dragged, and dragged. It was at least twice as long as it needed to be. If I had a hard copy of it I would have flipped to the end to find out what happened then put it down. As it was I half listened to long speeches explaining things that had already happened & what those events meant to everyone. The character development took so long that I stopped caring halfway through. The minor characters were one dimensional, and the Biblical metaphors were strained. A very poor listen that I would not recommend.
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