this was the first audio book that i listened to. i absolutely loved it and am looking forward to reading/listening to most of his work. there are two major strengths of this audio book. first, it is read by the author. for the audio books that i have listened to, the ones actually read by the author are so much richer and more expressive than those read by actors. the author, obviously, knew what s/he intened as the subtext of any particular passage and can convey that subtext through their voice. in addition, auster has an extremely pleasant voice and it was enjoyable to listen to him read it. the second strength of the book is the numerous intertwining plot-lines that are weaved together so well. in many ways, this is not simply a single story, but a richly told tapestry of stories spanning many years and several lives. to me, this made the book extremely enjoyable because each component of the overall plot was compelling, interesting, and well-told.
the only con of the book is that it had a bit of a downer for an ending, though this is just personal perference. the ending was not bad, but i was hoping for a happier ending.
in short, i cannot say enough to recommend this book. it will be well-worth your time and money.
this was a good book and i'm glad that i listened to it. i don't feel like i wasted my time or money. however, there were several issues i had with the book and want to alert people to before they purchase it themselves.
after listening to this a bit, i did some research on ebola and some of the issues raised in this book. this book caused quite a stir and some of the main people in this book have gone on to write their own books about what they do at the cdc and other places. because this book created such a scare, several of the people featured prominantely in the book express opinions that were contrary to the conclusions reached in the book. the resulting conclusion about the book is that it did a good job of capturing the facts of the case, but the author was overly drammatic in trying to scare people. the drama may be good for selling books, but it did not do much for the accuracy of the book and, in my opinion, detracted from an otherwise interesting book.
however, if you enjoy detective novels and thrillers, i think this book will be very enjoyable for you. it is also a good introduction to numerous issues of public health and the spread of disease. especially in the world after sept. 11, these issues should be considered seriously.
why am i writing another review when 188 people have already reviewed this title? basically, but i want to address an issue of expectations. is this the best book in the world? the most well-written? the most captivating? the most coherent? no. however, it is a very entertaining book and is quite enjoyable to listen to it. a friend of mine read the book and when i discussed it with her, she said that she thought this would be an ideal book to create an audio book from because the narration of the story switches back and forth between two characters. in the print version, my friend found this confusing. however, the use of two different readers in the audiobook clearly indicates the identity of the narrator.
other pros: it is a very intriguing basis for a book. the characters are pretty well developed. it raises some interesting philosophical issues about self, time, love, etc. the story moves at a good pace. it ends about the time that i felt it should end. i felt the ending "resolved" the book and i was satisfied with it.
cons: the characters could be developed a bit better. the author could have used foreshadowing better to create a more satisfying ending. i wasn't a huge fan of the male reader's voice, but it grew on me.
in short, don't expect the next noble winner from this title, but it is very enjoyable and should be satisfying to most people.
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