Are angels the good guys & devils bad? How does one end a war that has gone on for generations? The story has a one-true-love aspect to it in a somewhat Romeo & Juliet twisted way. I did keep wondering where it was going to go next, but sometimes found the pacing a bit drawn out & dawdling like a romance novel. The author had a lovely voice, but she sometimes pronounced classical literature words in a way that was new to me. Overall I give it a three out of 5 stars, like but not love.
The first half of the book was a slog. I kept waiting for something to happen as I had read so many good reviews. Patchett uses the Fitzgerald-Gatsby technique of having the focal character Dr. Swenson not show up until part way through the book, while the other characters all discuss and describe her before we, the reader-listener, meet her. The book really kicked into gear once main character Marina Singh goes down the Amazon with companions Annick and Easter to their jungle home. The second half of the book made getting through the slog very worthwhile. The ending twisted in some delightfully unexpected and expected ways, just like the dark, mysterious Amazon River itself. So skim the first half of the book, but definitely read/listen to and enjoy the second half of this book.
Five year old Jack is a very compelling narrator giving the listener a description of the world--room--he and his mother share. For Jack this is "normal", but not for his mother as she is aware of what lies beyond "door". The book also delves into the mother-child relationship, causing tears in my eyes when one mother tells another that for a mother photos are not necessary to remember all the stages/memories of a child's life. Listened to this audio book twice in a row as I found myself missing Jack's voice and wanting to rehear his and his mother's story told again.
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