Award-winning author William Kent Krueger has gained an immense fan base for his Cork O’Connor series. In Ordinary Grace, Krueger looks back to 1961 to tell the story of Frank Drum, a boy on the cusp of manhood. A typical 13-year-old with a strong, loving family, Frank is devastated when a tragedy forces him to face the unthinkable - and to take on a maturity beyond his years.
©2013 William Kent Krueger (P)2013 Recorded Books
“Krueger aims higher and hits harder with a stand-alone novel that shares much with his other work.” (Kirkus Reviews)
Say something about yourself! I am a runner and avid listener to books. Audible allow me to do my two favorite things at the same time.
As a Jew the concept of Grace is not something we theologically discuss to any great extent. Thus, I hesitated at first because of the title and the beginning overtones of the book. I was rapidly engrossed in the story and wanted to get to know the characters better. The story line, one of loss and coming of age in the early 1960's in Minnesota hit close to home even though it involved a minister's family. The story one of great pain at times was rough to listen to because I identified with Frank and Jake and their parents' at through out the story. I appreciated Krueger's ability to work with the pain and the fall out from it and the quiet love of the family. It is the journey of acceptance and integrity and moving with the pain that I loved.
It is hard to put down, well worth your time and your credits. Enjoy!
I stumbled across this book and I'm so glad I listened. I enjoyed all aspects - the unfolding of the story, the relationship of the 2 brothers, their father's calm steadiness. The narrator did an excellent job in bringing out the characters. I even looked him up on audible to check out other books he narrated. I highly recommend this book.
Enjoying one good listen after the next!
In some ways this is a "coming of age-coming to Jesus story"; but it is much more too. Circa 1961, a preacher's kid encounters personal losses and moral decisions that prove to be too much for a twelve year old boy.
This is an enormously satisfying story of a family and community that is at once ordinary and yet very unusual. Discrimination against Native Americans and those handicapped is visceral and leads to behaviors and decisions that create enormous hurts. The mystery of three deaths, all on or near the river are central to the story.
In the end, a young boy and his brother are faced with grave, all consuming decisions that will shape their lives forever.
The narration is superb, the story engaging and awe-inspiring.
Family, secrets, grace
The characters were completely believable, not-one dimensional. Beautiful writing and the narrator did a fine job with children, women and all the male characters.
The opening scene, it set the mysterious tone of the whole book. What would happen next? What really DID happen? Love that in a story.
I have never read the author's series books, but I loved this title so much. Reminded me of the simple speech of To Kill A Mockingbird - some of the same big themes, as well. Highly recommend!
I loved the consistency of the narrator's voice. At no point did he give away anything by the tone or any urgency or anything like that. That made only the words to be the foreshadowing of what was to come. Several times while listening I would think, "This is it. This will be the "big event" (so as not to be spoiler, I use those words)." But then it wasn't. And that kept the anticipation going.
The only thing that kept me from rating the story five stars was that to tell the story in first person, the use of eavesdropping and just happened to be there got to be annoying. Everything was discovered by the person telling the story and it made the overall story a bit contrived.
Audible started me reading fiction again. What a treat to have professional actors narrating a book I may not have had the time to "read".
This is a dull,dreary,depressing book. The epilogue is also dull,dreary and depressing and WAY too long.
When I chose this audiobook I liked the title and expected a nice story. It was more, exploring the themes of family, brokenness, betrayal, and even religion and weaving some mystery and darkness into the tapestry as well. I really appreciated how the author developed the character and personality of the boys, making even negative traits seem relatable and likable. Their father was inspiring to me, with his depth of love and respect for all, and his faith in God. The most memorable part of the book for me was his sermon on the day when he chose to deliver only one sermon of the usual three, and people from the other two church services came to his service to hear what he would share. His words really shared inspiration for me. The realism of how lost the mother was under the challenges faced was also appreciated. I remember feeling affronted at her just leaving her family when she was facing pressure, and then waiting to see if all would be well again for the family. In my own ups and downs, this book is going to shine some light on my path.
You will not be disappointed if you get this one. It's not just a book about two very likable young boys who have some major growing up experiences over the course of one summer. It's an engrossing mystery, or series of mysteries. The characters are extremely well drawn, even the minor ones, and the narrator does a fantastic job of bringing them to life. A great writer and a great narrator - the combination is beyond great!
Ordinary Grace is not the type of book I usually choose, but I enjoyed it as much as any I have listened to.
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