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Publisher's Summary

After their lives fly off the rails, getting back on track takes everything they have left.

Davis Winger has it all. A respected engineer who designs roller coasters in theme parks across the country, he is deeply in love with his wife and has a beautiful young daughter and a happy home. Until an accident strikes on one of his rides. Nothing fatal - except to his career. And to his marriage, when a betrayal from his past inadvertently comes to light. In one cosmically bad day, Davis loses it all.

His sister, Molly, is at a crossroads herself. She's coasting through a dire relationship with an incompatible man-child. And she's a journalist whose deeply personal columns about mothers and daughters are forcing her to confront the truth about her own mother, who abandoned Molly and Davis years ago and disappeared.

For these two siblings, it's just a matter of bracing themselves for one turbulent summer in this redemptive and painfully funny family drama about making the best of the sharp turns in life - those we choose to take and those beyond our control.

©2019 Andy Abramowitz (P)2019 Brilliance Publishing, Inc., all rights reserved.

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What listeners say about A Beginner's Guide to Free Fall

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

"I like roller coasters ..."

Those of a certain age may remember a movie called "Parenthood", a comedy with Steve Martin and Mary Steenberger. At one point the feeble grandmother says "Some people like merry go rounds. What fun is that? Just go around in a circle. I like roller coasters. You never know what is coming next."

As in the movie, roller coasters are a metaphor for the twists and turns that we encounter in a life journey. Heartbreak, illness, isolation, betrayal, are part of the lives of the characters. Can the bonds between people survive? This is a lovely book, full of witty banter between the characters, including a wise beyond her years 6-year old. It is one of the funnier books that I have listened to and one of the more heartfelt. I will definately look for more books from Mr. Abramowitz.

3 people found this helpful

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excellent presentation of many real-life struggles

Lots of topics covered: damage from infidelity to spouses and children, anguish and separation, struggle to maintain status in the community, embarrassment about divorce and separation, unwillingness to forgive, being humbled by stupid conduct and much more.

1 person found this helpful

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Unconnected Stories

I filled the various situation never really gotten truly connected. Character development was lacking. I kept waiting for things to be woven together for a greater depths of the story.

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“The South Dakota of her ass” and other great lines

If you were to ask me if this is actually and really a modern day Nabokov meets Billy Budd with a slice of Robertson Davies thrown i. For good measure I would have to give you an emphatic and honest “I don’t know” because I’ve never read any of those authors. But I did listen to this book, and it’s a wonderful modern tragedy (not a spoiler, the main character’s death is previewed in the first minute) that is somehow kept almost light-hearted by the author’s sense of humor and voracious appetite for musical references and puns. You can tell that he’s spent his life behind a variety of keyboards. It’s real, it’s human (but I like it anyway), and it’s engaging and doggone it, it’s enjoyable.

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Great Reading

I listened to this over a year ago and the story and characters still resonate with me! The plot isn't too relatable for me, but the flawed people were [relatable]. Very enjoyable listen and I could picture each character so clearly.

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Loved everything about this story

This is my first time reading a novel by Abramowitz. I enjoyed the well-crafted characters, the jokes between Davis and Molly, and the many musical references that Gen Xers will nod at. The story itself unfolds in many unexpected ways. Highly recommend.
P.S. It was a delight to read (I heard it at .85 speed).

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keep listening it was worth it

kind of a slow start could have shaved a couple hours off of it but I'm glad I stuck with it it was a good story

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I loved this book!

Wonderful and inventive story, with likable characters throughout. This author is so very funny and wry....I found myself laughing out loud at least a hundred times. Highly recommended!

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Characters were loveable

Smart dialogue, well developed characters and compelling story. I wanted to marry main character, flaws and all.

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fantastic

incredible! beautifully written. heart touching. and a few good laughs along the way. two thumbs up