I was hesitant to read this because I thought it might be another depressing story about Hurricane Katrina. While it has its depressing aspects, the characters are so well-developed, I felt as if I knew them. There are many more twists and turns that push Katrina into the background. Katrina was merely the catalyst for the calamities that resulted in the lives of Zeitoun and his family. I enjoyed this book very much and only reserve 5 stars for "Absolute Favorites" so 4 stars is a Winner.
This story was well written and performed perfectly. I knew little about the book when I bought it and so was very surprised at the turn of events. The perspective of Frances's character seemed quite realistic, what with the fear and panic she experienced. Can't say more or I could spoil it for readers. It was very suspenseful and the narration was exceptional. Rarely give 5 stars.
The characters were multi-dimensional; all had favors and flaws. Historically, it is about a time period we have read about before but the alternating perspectives of the two main characters presented a deeper understanding of the complexities of society in the early 1900s in the Southern U.S. states.
They were both excellent. I have never heard Turpin and not liked her performance. Cassidy had just the right amount of Irish accent that actually seemed to dissipate as the story went on which gave it deeper authenticity.
Know your place... or pay with your life.
This book helped me survive the flu. It was not in my Wish List; I purchased it from one of the Audible "sales racks." I am so glad I did. The combination of the prose and narration painted a picture that has left me feeling like I have just seen a fabulous haunting movie. I can relay all the details as though I saw them on the silver screen, yet they are only in my head. The character development is superb and I cannot disconnect the narrator from his character; he was perfect as Lev. I felt I truly knew the two main characters as I moved through the book. I was curious about the next adventure as I trudged across the Russian winter landscape with them. I was never allowed to forget the bitter cold, extreme hunger and utter cruelty they were experiencing. Yet I laughed at their foolishness, marveled at their resourcefulness and remained hopeful for them despite the steep odds against them. I could not want more from a book. As such, I am awarding it with five precious stars.
Great twists and turns! Cleverly written and once you get used to Owen's Very Peculiar voice, you can appreciate the complexity of the story and its imperfect characters. It's not like any other book I have ever read.
I find it very easy to get caught up in this author's stories and this book was no exception. If you like Picoult, you should enjoy this story.
This story of how a family went to unusual and extraordinary lengths to help their special needs son was interesting but I did not find it particularly compelling. There was an aspect of the story that was mildly bothersome to me and I kept hoping for a turn in the author's focus but it never came so there was something of a personal disappointment that other readers may not even notice. No regrets, but not a Favorite.
As many others have said, this story was a lot like the James Herriott stories, although I would say, with less comedy. It was certainly pleasant enough but not memorable enough to be a Favorite.
I enjoyed this book, but probably had greater interest since I had recently watched the fascinating documentary of Phillipe Petit, "Man on Wire." While Petit's feat is just a thread throughout the book, it somehow made it more compelling for me. I enjoyed the study of the variety of characters and looked forward to continuing to listen through its conclusion. Although it did not reach the level of "Favorite" for me, it was an enjoyable, light listen.
This book totally transported me into another world. It has become one of my favorite books and I have recommended it to a number of friends. I would advise you to listen to the sample first as the narrator's voice is very different. I found her voice to be very soothing and the accent to be beautifully musical and I would listen to another read by her but it may not be fore everyone. It was a fascinating listen.
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