Although I m not a scientist, I enjoyed this immensely. It made the theory of evolution clear, and was interesting enough that I didn't need to switch to something lighter halfway through my hour long commute. The performance was engaging in spite of some rather complex terms. I particularly enjoyed the first and last chapters. My only quibble was that references were made to diagrams -- 22 of them, I believe, which are not available for download on the audible site. (Sometimes an accompanying pdf is available.) This really impeded the understanding of some points.
This is a wonderful book built around memorable characters: Francie, the adolescent protagonist; Katie, her practical and wise mother; and her flawed but gifted father. Set in Brooklyn just before and into World War I, it gives insights into a earlier time that was tougher and more vibrant than nostalgic references would have us believe. I learned a lot, became attached to the characters, and found myself thinking about the themes. How do we love people who are flawed? Can broken people be fixed?
What more can you ask from a book?
We listened to the novel while on a four week holiday through Turkey. We listened to the section on Troy right around the time we were there, and Ephesus was also featured in the novel. The story holds one's interest, and the characters are believable, for the most part, but I found the novel fairly predictable and formulaic, and since we were right in the middle of learning about all of these places, the merging of more than a thousand years of history -- Helen of Troy and Ephesus at its height -- was a bit problematic. The male voice doing Helen was unintentionally amusing, but it helped pass a lot of hours on Turkish highways.
Report Inappropriate Content