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Publisher's Summary

Songs in Ordinary Time is set in the summer of 1960 - the last of quiet times and America's innocence. It centers on Marie Fermoyle, a strong but vulnerable woman whose loneliness and ambition for her children make her easy prey for the dangerous con man Omar Duvall. Marie's children are Alice, 17 - involved with a troubled young priest; Norm, 16 - hotheaded and idealistic; and Benjy, 12 - isolated and misunderstood, and so desperate for his mother's happiness that he hides the deadly truth only he knows about Duvall.

Among a fascinating cast of characters, we meet the children's alcoholic father, Sam Fermoyle, now living with his senile mother and embittered sister; Sam's meek brother-in-law, who makes anonymous "love" calls from the bathroom of his ailing appliance store; and the Klubock family, who - in complete contrast to the Fermoyles - live an orderly life in the perfect house next door.

©2008 Mary McGarry Morris; (P)2008 Brilliance Audio

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 3.3 out of 5.0
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Performance

  • 3.8 out of 5.0
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    13
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    11
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    14
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    1
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Story

  • 3.2 out of 5.0
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Sort by:
  • Overall

Don't waste your time.

I was really disappointed in this book. Everyone in this town is either crazy or delusional. It just seemed totally unrealistic. There were too many different story lines and none of them had an ending. If this story was a shirt, it would fall apart because of all of the loose ends. I wouldn't recommend this to anyone.

12 of 12 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

An annoying waste of time

I kept listening, thinking something good or resonable would happen. But no. Just hours of low life, grim, crazy people getting into bad situations, then worse ones.

11 of 11 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Louise
  • WINTON, CA, USA
  • 09-18-08

Where Are The Songs?

This is a pleasant listen. You really don't have to pay much attention because there is no established story line. Characters aren't developed and neither is anything else.
I could not feel any of the emotions depicted. With other books I either laugh out loud or cry uncontrollably.
Another and final thing if you lose your place don't fret; you'll never know if you picked the wrong place.

21 of 22 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Bad voices and terrible direction

I can't get far enough in to the story to know if it's good because the narrator has been directed to use these horrible, shrill, nasal voices for too many of the characters. I've heard some bad narration, but this is the most unappealing I've ever come across. I'm not sure I can make it through to the end. What was the director thinking????

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Kathryn
  • Port WashingtonUS Minor Outlying Islands
  • 10-07-09

Irritating waste of time

The voices were horrid. There was no real plot. It was not even ordinary. Just awful.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Long

it was very long but it held me. The ending sort of confused me though.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Regina
  • Round Lake Beach, IL, United States
  • 09-01-13

Oh My Gosh! This one was tough!

Songs in Ordinary Times was quite a story. The writing was well crafted and Sandra Burr's performance was terrific, as always. But, I kept hoping for something good to happen to these characters. It was just plain depressing, at times. There were many many threads and subplots which sometimes were hard to remember and follow. And I don't know when I've hated an antagonist so much. Also, it was very long and the misery just went on and on. Finally, after more than twenty-five hours of stress, the ending gave a bit of a reprise.
I probably won't listen to this one again, although I am somewhat curious about the movie.

  • Overall
  • wvfairy
  • Berkeley Springs, wv United States
  • 11-11-10

Uh oh

I should've read the reviews of this because I am just 10 minutes into it and I already don't care for the narrator's voice or any of the characters presented so far. Of course, I am just off of listening to The Help, which was amazingly beautifully done so I'm kind of on the rebound. But still. Can I get my money back?!