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Calling Me Home: A Novel | [Julie Kibler]

Calling Me Home: A Novel

Eighty-nine-year-old Isabelle McAllister has a big favor to ask her hairdresser, Dorrie. She wants the black single mother to drop everything and drive her from Texas to a funeral in Ohio - tomorrow. Dorrie, fleeing problems of her own and curious about Isabelle’s past, agrees, not knowing it will be a journey that changes both their lives. Isabelle confesses that, as a teen in 1930s Kentucky, she fell in love with Robert Prewitt, a would-be doctor and the black son of her family’s housekeeper - in a town where blacks weren’t allowed after dark. The tale of their forbidden relationship and its tragic consequences just might help Dorrie find her own way.
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Publisher's Summary

Eighty-nine-year-old Isabelle McAllister has a big favor to ask her hairdresser, Dorrie. She wants the black single mother to drop everything and drive her from Texas to a funeral in Ohio - tomorrow. Dorrie, fleeing problems of her own and curious about Isabelle’s past, agrees, not knowing it will be a journey that changes both their lives.

Isabelle confesses that, as a teen in 1930s Kentucky, she fell in love with Robert Prewitt, a would-be doctor and the black son of her family’s housekeeper - in a town where blacks weren’t allowed after dark. The tale of their forbidden relationship and its tragic consequences just might help Dorrie find her own way.

©2013 Julie Kibler (P)2013 Blackstone Audio, Inc

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.4 (270 )
5 star
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Overall
4.4 (243 )
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Story
4.5 (241 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Michael PASADENA, CA, United States 07-25-13
    Michael PASADENA, CA, United States 07-25-13 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
    12
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    "Wonderful book - great writing - excellent ending"

    This is a well written book. The performance by the readers was excellent. This was a challenge because each reader had to read some dialog by the other character and come close to matching the voice so it is not jarring when the next chapter starts read by the other character. The ending was excellent.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Janet Boulder, Colorado, United States 07-02-13
    Janet Boulder, Colorado, United States 07-02-13 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
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    9
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    "Great story, Great listen."
    Would you consider the audio edition of Calling Me Home to be better than the print version?

    Loved this book, almost had me in tears. Great listen and great naration.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Pamela Orr Lakeside, CA United States 06-09-13
    Pamela Orr Lakeside, CA United States 06-09-13 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
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    "What a great listen!"
    If you could sum up Calling Me Home in three words, what would they be?

    Great story telling


    Have you listened to any of Bahni Turpin and Lorna Raver ’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    No


    Any additional comments?

    I felt like I was with them on this trip. My interest remained intense the whole way.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Christina R. Randolph RAF Alconbury, United Kingdom 06-07-13
    Christina R. Randolph RAF Alconbury, United Kingdom 06-07-13 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
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    9
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    "In love!"
    Where does Calling Me Home rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    This is one of the best audiobooks I have EVER listened to.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Too hard to pick between Dorie and Miss Isabelle. They are so amazing and I was instantly in love with both of them.


    What does Bahni Turpin and Lorna Raver bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    I bought this book just because it was narrated by Bahni Turpin because I loved her in The Help. Lorna Raver had the perfect voice to play Miss Isabelle. This is the first book I have heard her narrate and I couldn't imagine a better duo.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    The entire last 2 hours of the book was spent in tears. I listen to my audio books while driving - through bluetooth - back and forth to work on the beltway outside of DC. This drive is very stressful. However, once Dorie and Miss Isabelle got to Cincinnati, I couldn't stop listening. I couldn't stop crying. I wasn't in my car, I was in the car with them. Even though I was drawn in from the very beginning of this book, once Robert showed up in his uniform, I was transported back to 1941.


    Any additional comments?

    I can't say enough about how much I enjoyed this book. Worth every penny....

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    elizabeth bolton, CT, United States 10-15-14
    elizabeth bolton, CT, United States 10-15-14 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Very heartwarming"

    This was a great story - It was a gentle uplifting read and the characters were so real and likable. I loved it. I would love to have more by this author.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    May 10-08-14
    May 10-08-14
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    2
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    Story
    "Beautiful. Heartbreaking. Genius"

    Calling Me Home is a beautifully written story about love, loss, and family.

    It does take a while to get going. For a long time I was trying to decide if I liked it and if I even wanted to continue listening, but I continued; slowly, and am very glad I did. I eventually found myself wondering what will happen next, and I was surprised at each bend and turn the story took.

    The writing style is fantastic as well. The dual narration really makes the story come alive and easy to follow. Bahni and Lorna do a fantastic job with different voices and emotion.

    The two main characters, Isabelle and Dory, go on a great adventure together. Dory's story is told in the present day while you learn of Isabelle's life through her 90-something old eyes and memories as she recounts her story to Dory.

    You may be weary at first, but trust me, you will not regret listening to this book. It is truly beautiful and definitely worth the credit and time!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rebecca Hubbell 07-25-14 Member Since 2014
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    10
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    Overall
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    Story
    "Like Honey"
    Any additional comments?

    This was one of the best books I have read in years and is probably in my top 20 overall. The fact that this is Kibler's debut novel amazes me. This book flowed like honey, it was smooth and sucked you in but gave you time to take in the story. Remember though, that with honey comes bees and this book has no shortage of heart wrenching stingers.

    A story of forbidden love, family ties, and the daily struggles of life. Dorrie and Isabelle give us a road trip through their lives and drive their way straight into our hearts. Grab some Kleenex, a blanket, and eventually ice cream, because by the time this book is through with you... you'll need them all. Don't forget to go get a hug while you're at it so you don't just crumble to the ground, okay?

    I thought this quote was a pretty accurate description of the book:

    "If Julie Kibler's novel Calling Me Home were a young woman, her grandmother would be To Kill a Mockingbird, her sister would be The Help and her cousin would be The Notebook. But even with such iconic relatives, Calling Me Home stands on her own; this novel uncovers a painful past that tells us so much about who we are, where we're going, and the people who are traveling with us." –Wiley Cash, New York Times bestselling author of A Land More Kind Than Home.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Peggy Barton 07-22-14 Member Since 2012
    ratings
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    25
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    "Loved this book!"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Calling Me Home to be better than the print version?

    I have only heard the audio book. The narrators were great and I think added to the story.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The storyline was interesting. The way it jumped back in time was smooth. The way it brought the two women together was great.


    Have you listened to any of Bahni Turpin and Lorna Raver ’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    No.


    If you could rename Calling Me Home, what would you call it?

    I believe it is an apt name.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mama Lola 07-15-14
    Mama Lola 07-15-14 Member Since 2011
    ratings
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    41
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    "Great Book"
    What did you love best about Calling Me Home?

    The narration was the best .


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Calling Me Home?

    I can't say what is the most memorable moment without giving away one of the most important events in the book..


    Have you listened to any of Bahni Turpin and Lorna Raver ’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    Yes, and this is the best by far by both narrators.


    Who was the most memorable character of Calling Me Home and why?

    Isabelle because she has had a pretty rough and eventful life.


    Any additional comments?

    I didn't want this book to end. I miss all the characters. This is the best book that I have read in a long time.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    cindy st. paul, MN, United States 12-03-13
    cindy st. paul, MN, United States 12-03-13 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
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    "Great book for a road trip!"
    Where does Calling Me Home rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Calling Me Home is by far one of my favorite books this year. The story line is heartbreaking, gut wrenching but so so possibly true. The social reality revealed in Calling Me Home really helped me open my eyes to what it mean to be a minority during early American times.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Calling Me Home?

    Favorite: When Isabelle was tending to the rose bush outside her home and Robert showed up. My least favorite: When Isabelle's mother did the unthinkable. Ugh, that woman. Still gets me mad just thinking about what she did.


    What about Bahni Turpin and Lorna Raver ’s performance did you like?

    I loved the contrast of their voices in the audio book. Both readers read so well.


    Who was the most memorable character of Calling Me Home and why?

    Robert. Who doesn't want a man like Robert?


    Any additional comments?

    I was disappointed that Robert and Isabelle didn't get to spend but fragments of their lives together ... that Isabelle never knew Pearl existed.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
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