No, the book told a truth that it's difficult for Americans to understand about the way everyday lower caste people in a world class city like Mumbai are forced to live their lives. There are no beautiful forevers there, everything falls apart and no one really gives a rat's ass. I wish I could have seen something other than mans inhumanity to man -
I doubt that it could have been made enjoyable unless a positive spin were placed on some of the misery the residents of the slum had to endure everyday of their lives. The author wanted to tell it like it was, and it wasn't pleasant.
I don't believe I've listened to any other narrations by Sunil Malhotra. He is masterful - He brought the characters to life for me.
Yes, it was worth the listening time. I think it told me more than I wanted to know, however.
This is a chronicle of the coming of age of a young girl growing up in the world of her Hasidic grandparents and extended family, her struggles to fit in and then finally to escape that world. Feldman does a good job of explaining the beliefs and customs of her restrictive Hasidic family and community - this was very interesting. She had a lot to overcome with her mentally retarded and alcoholic father and her absent mother, but her grandparents did love her and tried their best to give her a good life. She had some difficult times, early marriage, baby, divorce, etc... but then so do many of us. She ultimately comes off as a spoiled, whiny little brat who felt that she was owed a lot more in life than she got. She was only 24yrs old, after all. In the end, she finally comes to terms with herself and her Jewish faith, but we're left hanging: Did she maintain custody of her son? Did she finish school? Did she get a job? Did she ever get together with her mother again? Too much rhetoric on how good she looked, how strong she had to be to get what she felt she deserved. Too many unanswered questions.
I loved this audiobook - definitely one of my favorites so far. Ruth Rendell/Barbara Vine is a superb mystery writer. I've listened to, or read, everything she's ever written.
The most memorable parts of the book for me were in the early chapters where Asta writes in her diary of her early life after immigrating from Denmark to London with her husband, the birth of their children, of Swanny's place in the family, and their rise from near poverty to a life of upper class wealth. Asta herself was a contradiction: tough and cold sometimes, and yet warm and motherly too. She was a survivor first of all and you get the feeling that she would endure anything to get what she wanted. The psychological makeup and interraction between Rendell's characters are what makes her stuff so good.
Harriet Walter brought life to the characters with her scandinavian accent and superb narration. There's nothing worse for an audiobook experience than a bad narrator or better than a good one.
I loved it - from the first word to the last. I looked forward to my long commutes so that I could listen to the book without interruption.
Exciting, heartbreaking, uplifting
The historical aspect of the story was my favorite part - Brooks manages to get into the minds of her characters and bring them to life in a way that's relevant to today. I love anything written by Geraldine Brooks.
Barbara Caruso, Jennifer Ehle, there are many wonderful narrators who would do justice to this book. A reader with a British accent, or should I say a GOOD reader with a British accent would be fine.
I haven't finished the book, but so far it's Anna.
I'm reviewing early because I just had to comment on the poor choice of Geraldine Brooks as the narrator. Yikes, I hope I can last til the end - her reading is monotone, whiny and just plain bad.
Great book, bad reader - I'll say it again. I will never buy another audible book read by the author - I've been disappointed too many times.
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