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Boy's Life | [Robert McCammon]

Boy's Life

Zephyr, Alabama, is an idyllic hometown for eleven-year-old Cory Mackenson - a place where monsters swim the river deep and friends are forever. Then, one cold spring morning, Cory and his father witness a car plunge into a lake -- and a desperate rescue attempt brings his father face-to-face with a terrible, haunting vision of death. As Cory struggles to understand his father's pain, his eyes are slowly opened to the forces of good and evil that surround him. From an ancient mystic who can hear the dead and bewitch the living, to a violent clan of moonshiners....
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Publisher's Summary

In me are the memories of a boy's life, spent in that realm of enchantments. These are the things I want to tell you....

Robert McCammon delivers "a tour de force of storytelling" (BookPage) in his award-winning masterpiece, a novel of Southern boyhood, growing up in the 1960s, that reaches far beyond that evocative landscape to touch readers universally.

Boy's Life is a richly imagined, spellbinding portrait of the magical worldview of the young - and of innocence lost.

Zephyr, Alabama, is an idyllic hometown for eleven-year-old Cory Mackenson - a place where monsters swim the river deep and friends are forever. Then, one cold spring morning, Cory and his father witness a car plunge into a lake -- and a desperate rescue attempt brings his father face-to-face with a terrible, haunting vision of death. As Cory struggles to understand his father's pain, his eyes are slowly opened to the forces of good and evil that surround him. From an ancient mystic who can hear the dead and bewitch the living, to a violent clan of moonshiners, Cory must confront the secrets that hide in the shadows of his hometown - for his father's sanity and his own life hang in the balance....

©1991 Robert McCammon (P)2011 Simon & Schuster, Inc

What the Critics Say

"Wonderful...filled with enough adventures, joy, discovery, and heartache for a dozen boys' lifetimes." (Houston Chronicle)

"No one can paint word pictures as vividly as Robert McCammon." (Sandra Brown)

"It's McCammon's The Prince of Tides.... Incredibly moving." (Peter Straub)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.3 (36 )
5 star
 (9)
4 star
 (10)
3 star
 (6)
2 star
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1 star
 (8)
Overall
3.3 (32 )
5 star
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4 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
 (9)
Story
4.0 (32 )
5 star
 (13)
4 star
 (11)
3 star
 (4)
2 star
 (2)
1 star
 (2)
Performance
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  •  
    John Norton Southern USA 12-09-11
    John Norton Southern USA 12-09-11 Member Since 2008

    I'm hearing teacher voices

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "This book must be unabridged!"

    This is one of my 2-3 most favorite novels, period. I was excited to find it on Audible and bought it before I realized it is an old ABRIDGED version read by Richard Thomas. OK with Thomas, not with abridgement. McCammon is one of our great prose stylists - it's a crime to chop it up. I'm sure Audible will get the message and produce a full length reading, after the great response to the new rendition of McCammon's Swan Song.

    I stopped listening to this one after 20 minutes. I'll wait for the real thing.

    24 of 24 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Douglas LOS ANGELES, CA, United States 01-24-12
    Douglas LOS ANGELES, CA, United States 01-24-12 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "DON'T GET THE ABRIDGED VERSION"
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    A friend recommended this to me. After listening to the abridged version, I was wondering what he was thinking, because the story was kind of pointless and had a lot of unfollowed threads. Then I scanned a summary on Wikipedia, and I think this thing was abridged with a weed whacker. TERRIBLE job. Audible should drop this version immediately and carry the unabridged version. I feel like I wasted my money.


    13 of 13 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Bronwyn Soell Illinois, United States 07-29-12
    Bronwyn Soell Illinois, United States 07-29-12 Member Since 2006
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    85
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    "This is abridged!!!! Too Bad!"

    This book has been a favorite of mine for years. My son is almost 13 and I thought it would be perfect to listen to during a car trip. Well, it was- sort of.

    The story is eerie and wonderful and takes you back in time to the US of the 1960s in a way that reminds me a little of To Kill A Mockingbird. The narrator, Richard Thomas is wonderful, his voice, accents and characters all completely believable and compelling.

    So why does it only get 3 stars? It is ABRIDGED. I should have noticed before I bought it how short the audible book was, but I was so happy to see it that I didn't. This version cuts out much of the richness and texture and magical realism of the original novel, leaving you with a sort of cockeyed murder mystery story- still enjoyable, but so so disappointing to anyone who has read the book.

    Buy this if you want a great introduction to Robert McCammon- and then join me, as I am sure you will want to, in asking Audible to give us the REAL book, and not this poor cut up imitation.

    11 of 11 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Allan mesa, az, United States 01-04-12
    Allan mesa, az, United States 01-04-12 Listener Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Wish it was not an abridged version."
    What made the experience of listening to Boy's Life the most enjoyable?

    Read it back in the 90's and loved the whole storyline.


    What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

    Disappointed because of the abrigdement.


    Which character ??? as performed by Richard Thomas ??? was your favorite?

    Richard's reading was excellent, I hope he will read an unabridged version.


    11 of 11 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Crystal Wilson north carolina 05-05-12
    Crystal Wilson north carolina 05-05-12 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    15
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    12
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    "Needs to be unabridged"
    What disappointed you about Boy's Life?

    It's full of holes.


    Has Boy's Life turned you off from other books in this genre?

    Only the unabridged works.


    Would you listen to another book narrated by Richard Thomas?

    Yes, he did very well.


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Boy's Life?

    None that's the problem, all the good stuff was left on the floor.


    Any additional comments?

    The book is a fantastic read as a hard copy. I was so excited when I saw Richard Thomas was the narrator that I didn't pay attention. I didn't realize it was abridged. Please get us an unabridged version. We are loyal to you.

    9 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Laurence Marietta, GA, United States 12-06-11
    Laurence Marietta, GA, United States 12-06-11 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "DO NOT DOWNLOAD THIS ABRIDGED VERSION"
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    The unabridged version


    Has Boy's Life turned you off from other books in this genre?

    No


    What about Richard Thomas’s performance did you like?

    A very good reader


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    Yes


    Any additional comments?

    Everyone in my family, except for me, has read the unabridged version of this book and absolutely loved it. I downloaded the abridged version because there is no unabridged version (at least not at the time of this review) to see why they loved it so much. I didn't finish it because when I talked about the part of the book that I had listened to (about half) with my family, they asked me about so many episodes of the unabridged book that were not in the abridged version that both they and I knew the unabridged version just does not do the book justice. This makes sense, as the part of the book I did listen to was only average as it included parts only related to the main story line. It appears that the abridged version just does not have the

    13 of 14 people found this review helpful
  •  
    CAROL CARNEGIE, PA, United States 03-27-13
    CAROL CARNEGIE, PA, United States 03-27-13 Member Since 2013

    C Galand

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "disappointed"
    Would you try another book from Robert McCammon and/or Richard Thomas?

    this is one of my favorite books and i was really enjoying the story as i drove until i realized that huge portions were missing. as a book, the story is so full of the magic and mystery of childhood with layer after layer of the story unfolding. as an audiobook, it was just a so-so story. richard thomas did a good job with what was available but don't waste your money on this, read the book, it is excellent, this just made me feel ripped off.


    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    azalea moreno valley, CA, United States 10-02-12
    azalea moreno valley, CA, United States 10-02-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "the audio and the book dont match"
    What would have made Boy's Life better?

    good book if you read it


    What do you think your next listen will be?

    not sure yet


    Which character – as performed by Richard Thomas – was your favorite?

    cory


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Boy's Life?

    none


    Any additional comments?

    if the audio matched the book it would be a lot better but it would be on chaper two part two and skip all the way to part 4 or something like that. It skipped tooo many pages and paragraphs as well eventually i had no idea where i was or what was happening in the book

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Julia Thomas CONCORD, NC, US 05-21-14
    Julia Thomas CONCORD, NC, US 05-21-14 Member Since 2011
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    "Favorite book for many ages!"
    If you could sum up Boy's Life in three words, what would they be?

    Exciting
    Fast paced
    Reasonable


    What other book might you compare Boy's Life to and why?

    Some of ET.. some of Tom Sawyer


    Which character – as performed by Richard Thomas – was your favorite?

    The Lady.. I could just picture this little woman!


    If you could rename Boy's Life, what would you call it?

    Mystery! or Small Town Mystery


    Any additional comments?

    I have a notorious reputation as an avid reader, but someone who does not like to re-read books. The books that I have read more than once makes a very short list, but counting this audible "reading" this is the fourth time that I have read this book.. and it is wonderful every time.
    I also sent my copy to my dad ten years ago after I first read it.. and he was affected in very much the same way.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Zachary Lebanon, Ohio, United States 10-24-13
    Zachary Lebanon, Ohio, United States 10-24-13
    ratings
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    1
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    Story
    "boy's life review"
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    no


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Boy's Life?

    the climax


    Did the narration match the pace of the story?

    yes


    If this book were a movie would you go see it?

    yes


    Any additional comments?

    the audio cut out a lot of the actual book. i listened to the entire audio, and when we talked about it in class, i realized that i was missing some key elements from the story.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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