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Ordinary Grace Audiobook

Ordinary Grace

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Publisher's Summary

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

What the Critics Say

“Krueger aims higher and hits harder with a stand-alone novel that shares much with his other work.” (Kirkus Reviews)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (4680 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Jim Hall 11-22-13
    Jim Hall 11-22-13

    closed captioner

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A gem of a story, extremely well told"
    If you could sum up Ordinary Grace in three words, what would they be?

    Engrossing, nostalgic, and well-written. But just three words don't really do this fine novel justice.


    What other book might you compare Ordinary Grace to and why?

    I chose Ordinary Grace because I thought it sounded a little like Boy’s Life by Robert McCammon, which is another absolutely wonderful novel. It is like that, at least on the surface – a story about a 13-year-old boy who lives in a small town in Minnesota, and how several deaths, including a murder, affect him and his family. But it’s a much larger story than that; it’s about family, love, life, God, and “God’s awful grace” (a quote from Aeschylus), plus ordinary grace as referred to in the title. It's not a story about religion, though.


    What does Rich Orlow bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Rich Orlow was the perfect choice as narrator; his flat, Midwestern accent is perfect, and he gives each character – males, females, and a wide variety of ages – distinctive and very believable voices.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    It's possible that a movie could be made of this book, but I'm doubtful any film would be anywhere as good, so I'm content if no one makes one.


    Any additional comments?

    I absolutely loved this Audible title -- perhaps more than if I had simply read it -- and I will definitely listen to it again at some point.. Highly recommended.

    4 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Think about this 01-12-14 Member Since 2011
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    "Tragic story, told beautifully"

    Rich Orlow does a wonderful job in his telling of this tragic summer in the life of a minister's family. Two boys become men, when too many deaths seem to be connected and when one strikes their own, secrets become unraveled and suspects abound. Frank tells the story of how his family copes, each in their own way, as he deals with having maybe made too many wrong choices putting peoples lives at risk.
    A tale of suspense, murder, growing up, humor, and love. For fans of Cork O'Conner, this story is sure to please, as Krueger works his magic of words, keeping interest until the very last page.

    12 of 19 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kitty 01-01-14
    Kitty 01-01-14 Member Since 2017

    Give me a good mystery and I am happy!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "This is not your typical mystery..."

    I thoroughly enjoyed this book, while it is not the typical mystery with the "edge of my seat" excitement, it did involve trying to figure out "who done it."

    The book takes you back to a simpler time. Kids went outside and rode their bikes. They did not play video games all day.

    I purchased this book just because of the author's name, I have all of his " Cork O'Connor" series and enjoyed them all.

    This book entertains and that is why I buy books! Well worth the time and credit. Enjoy!

    7 of 11 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Bonnie-Jean Framingham, MA, United States 03-28-13
    Bonnie-Jean Framingham, MA, United States 03-28-13
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    "NOT a Cork O'Connor book..."
    Any additional comments?

    ...but a very good listen. This book reminds me very much of the movie 'Stand By Me.' It is a coming of age story of a 13 year old boy and his brother, told by his adult self. It took me a while to get past the idea that it wasn't a Cork O'Connor story and listen to it on its own merit. Once I was able to do that, I was fully enveloped in this poignant story of a young boy dealing with family and friends, and life and death in a small town in which he lived for several years. The rich characters and the relationships between them had me coming back to listen, even more than the mystery of who the killer was, which was definitely the secondary story line. If you liked 'Stand By Me' you'll love 'Ordinary Grace.'

    7 of 11 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Reademandweep 10-23-15 Member Since 2016

    and a penny for your thoughts

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    "Don't waste a credit"

    I am shocked by the five-star reviews on this book. I have not read the authors previous books so I can only speak about this one when I say his writing style is juvenile and almost laughable at times. He try's too hard to The extreme overuse of similes is distracting. I felt he was trying to be profound rather than just telling an honest story. I read a lot and I have never read an author so self-indulgent.
    There wasn't much plot which normally wouldn't be a problem for me. I like character analysis but these characters were uninteresting and overly simplistic, almost caricatures. There were so many physical handicaps in that small town I began to wonder about incest.
    The reader was OK. I think he did the best he could with the material.
    I do not recommend this book unless you can borrow it from a friend or get it for a $1.95. I happened to get this on the daily special but I would be sorely disappointed if I had used one of my credits.

    5 of 8 people found this review helpful
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    Najima Rainey 04-21-15 Member Since 2014
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    "Saccharine"

    This is an old school coming of age story that actually has the phrase "and we would never be the same again." Written without an ounce of irony, and so innocent, Midwestern sweet, it's like a world where Truman Capote never wrote In Cold Blood.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mark Waltham, MA, United States 04-15-14
    Mark Waltham, MA, United States 04-15-14 Member Since 2010

    MTF

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    "Disappointing mystery/coming-of-age story"

    I liked the idea of a 1960's coming-of-age story mixed with a mystery. The problem is that this novel did not succeed in either of those areas. Very little happened in the first half of the novel. References to Brillcream, Risk, and Gunsmoke were not enough to make that golden era of childhood come alive, and I am from that generation! The characters and world were not interesting enough for that to work without more plot. Frank is the 13 year-old protagonist, who lives with a younger brother who stutters (and gets bullied), an older sister, and his parents, a minister, and a mother unhappy being the wife of a minister. The big mystery occurs halfway through the novel, when a major character disappears. The story picked up at that point. It moved from a 2-star to a 3-star book then. A good reader helped, too. This novel felt like something I had read many times in the past. I might have liked it more had it seemed fresher to me. Ultimately, it did provide a pleasant way to pass the time, but not much more.

    8 of 13 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Debbie Toney, Alabama 09-14-13
    Debbie Toney, Alabama 09-14-13 Member Since 2013

    Retired CFO, Army wife, Mom of five, Grandma of six, two sons who served in combat, love to read books that reflect my values and faith, love mysteries, historical, military stories, and books that don't waste my time . . . if it doesn't have an ending that was worth the wait, I'm not a happy camper.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A town and a time like Mayberry"

    This book, set in 1961, crept deep into my heart and senses. The story is about Frank and his younger brother, Jake. Their dad is the Methodist minister. They have an older sister, Ariel, a senior in high school, about to go off to college. Their mom, not the typical preacher's wife, spends her days wishing her husband had become the brilliant attorney, his first career choice . . . but who later decided to go to seminary, after he returned home from the war. The small town that they live in, much like Mayberry, changes that summer beginning with the death of a small boy . . . and then things begin on a course of pain and change that will haunt and cut their family and the townspeople to the core . . . and threaten all they believe in. This story is their path through that . . . and it is an amazing, tearful, frightening journey, bringing one face to face with all the best and the worst in the people . . . and teaching two young boys about true grace.

    5 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jennifer Ottawa, Ontario, Canada 08-06-13
    Jennifer Ottawa, Ontario, Canada 08-06-13 Member Since 2011

    Jennifer B.

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    "Almost perfect"

    This is a book that makes you want to write one of your own, based on your childhood memories. But you could never do as well as William Kent Kreuger has done here. I was completely immersed in the Minnesota landscape, I could feel the heat and the worry, and the darkness. It's not often that I cry while listening to an audio book, but I cried many times while listening to the extraordinary work.

    The only nit I would pick is that it becomes almost unbelievable that the young hero is always present (through eavesdropping, or overhearing, or circumstance) in all of the key plot developments.

    Go ahead, and buy this one. It's almost perfect.

    5 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Big jim Picotto Great White North 01-28-15
    Big jim Picotto Great White North 01-28-15 Member Since 2016

    Say something about yourself!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Not much of a Mystery."

    Yes, i get its a well written book. But if you are looking for a mystery/suspense/thriller, walk away. This is none of them.

    6 of 10 people found this review helpful

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