I've listened to a couple memoirs read by the author now and I have come to the realization that I would prefer them to just tell us the story rather than to be reading the book... I guess that's my own problem - I should probably avoid the memoirs :) Although the passage about the death of her daughter was heartrending and her emotionality did add to the experience.
This book was darkly hilarious and I couldn't stop listening. The premise, the characters, the narration, it all came together in a highly enjoyable Audible experience. The main character was slightly clueless but that made his falling into this soul collecting line of work all the more humorous and the cast of colourful characters, from the babysitter neighbour ladies to his colourful staff and domineering sister - everything was pitch perfect and lots of fun.
Granted it has been a few years since I read the last book in this series (before this one of course) but I didn't feel that there was really anything left for Ayla to discover/invent or create. She is, after all, the Forrest Gump of the prehistoric era. That may be unfair, I really enjoyed the Clan of the Cave Bear saga but this book didn't really feel necessary in the arc of the characters lives. My suggestion - stop at book 5.
I listened to this book non-stop for two days - it was an 80's geekathon and I loved it. Sure, the love story was a little hokey and a few of the 'twists' predictable but the references to John Hughes movies and stand up arcade games took right back to jr high and all the cultural references that we all loved from back in the day. The protagonist was heroic but still relateable and the narration was really good. I especially got a kick out of the references to Wil Weaton in the book... as read by Wil Wheaton. Fun, easy and highly enjoyable read/listen.
The old and young narrators both did a really good job on this audio book. Obviously the young sections were where all the action happened but the older rememberance tied it all together and added a layer of a life well lived... and then what? It was a good listen.
I thought the author narrating would add to the experience but, honestly, his delivery was kind of sing-songy and boring. I think a more dramatic reader would have brought the listener into the story - it lacked the emotional impact I think reading it yourself would garnish.
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