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Publisher's Summary

From a New York Times best-selling author comes a story of unexpected friendship - three women thrown together in college who grow to adulthood united and divided by secrets, lies, and a single night that shaped all of them.

When UC Santa Cruz roommates Anna and Kate find passed-out Georgianna Leoni on a lawn one night, they wheel her to their dorm in a shopping cart. Twenty years later they gather around a campfire on the lawn of a New England mansion. What happens in between - the web of wild adventures, unspoken jealousies, and sudden tragedies that alter the courses of their lives - is charted with sharp wit and aching sadness in this meticulously constructed novel.

Anna, the de facto leader, is fearless and restless - moving fast to stay one step ahead of her demons. Quirky, contemplative Kate is a natural sidekick but a terrible wingman ("If you go home with him, might I suggest breathing through your mouth"). And then there's George: the most desired woman in any room and the one most likely to leave with the worst man.

Shot through with the crackling dialogue, irresistible characters, and propulsive narrative drive that make Lutz's books so beloved, How to Start a Fire pulls us deep into Anna, Kate, and George's complicated bond and pays homage to the abiding, irrational love we share with the family we choose.

©2015 Spellman Enterprises, Inc. (P)2015 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

What listeners say about How to Start a Fire

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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    64
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    55
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    25
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    14
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    7
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    41
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    12
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    5
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    2
Story
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    57
  • 4 Stars
    40
  • 3 Stars
    28
  • 2 Stars
    12
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    11

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Read this book - don't listen to it

I strongly recommend this book be read rather than played. The chapters skip back and forth to various decades and it was very hard to keep track, especially if you only listen to a few chapters a day like I did. I'm playing it again so I can catch some of the details that I missed the first time. Overall the story was interesting and well-written, but I wanted it told in chronological order. I've read all of Lutz's other books and found them hilarious. This book is not funny.

4 people found this helpful

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

Not what I expect from Lisa Lutz

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

No. In fact, I told my sister to only read it if she had read and re-read everything she wanted to read.

What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

The story jumped around so much I never really found anything interesting.

What do you think the narrator could have done better?

As for her voice and her portrayal of characters, the narrator did a fine job. She didn't convey the parts that were supposed to be humorous as such. She read them flat.

Do you think How to Start a Fire needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

Nooooooooo.....please, no.

Any additional comments?

I have read all of Lisa Lutz's books. They are all highly entertaining. Maybe if I had read this book in print instead of listening to it, I would have found it more enjoyable.

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Unsure

I love the books Lisa Lutz writes and become invested in the characters, follow the plot and enjoy it through to the end with the exception of this book. I could not bring myself to care about anyone in this story. It wasn't a bad story, it was just one I listened to but failed to connect with or enjoy.

2 people found this helpful

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

Awesome! Didn't want it to end

The way the story was delivered is unique and entertaining. great story, awesome narration Loved it.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Its all over the place

Would you try another book from Lisa Lutz and/or Tavia Gilbert?

The reason I read this title is that I read Lisa Lutz, Spellman series and loved them and I laugh out loud for real. I also enjoyed listening to the narrators Ari Graynor, and Christina Moore. I didn't care for Tavia Gilbert, a little over done for my taste.

What was most disappointing about Lisa Lutz’s story?

The story is all over the place, and I don't know or care about the characters

Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Tavia Gilbert?

Ari Graynor

What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

A state of being weary, and angry I used my credits on it.

1 person found this helpful

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

Appallingly Bad

What would have made How to Start a Fire better?

I can't imagine how this book got published.

Has How to Start a Fire turned you off from other books in this genre?

If the genre is bad writing, poor plot and irritating characters, then yes, I am turned off to other books in this genre.

3 people found this helpful

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

LOVED The story and characters

This was a very well-written story and I stayed intrigued throughout the entire book. Excellent

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

What a journey to immerse in

I love this book so much! The narrator was wonderful and I'm impressed how well she read this book, 3 deep characters had to be a challenge and she did it perfectly. I really likes the characters and their quirky personalities. I love their loyalty even through gut wrenching tragedy, they are a family the three of them. I laughed and cried. I listened from start to finish, only stopping to sleep. I thoroughly enjoyed it and highly recommend it. It was free for me with my plus membership.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Confusing (Time Lapse)

The characters were interesting but I felt like I couldn’t really understand where their issues stemmed from. All three girls had major issues and the author never seemed to tell the story of what made them that way. Another issue was the time lapse. The book jumped around so much and sometimes didn’t let you know you were in a different time period of their lives. It was so confusing. This could’ve been a really good book but fell short for me.

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

Bleh

I tried, y’all, I really did. I made it to chapter 22 and when I realized I had 4 more hours of listening I couldn’t take anymore. At this point in the book, I didn’t like any of the characters. I do not mind when books jump back and forth in time but there seemed to be no rhyme or reason as to why these jump backs in time were necessary. Not to mention, when the jump backs in time would take place, those weren’t chronological either so the story could go from 2005 to 2001 to 1998 to 2008 and then back to 2005.
What was the pint of this story? It a book doesn’t engage you in 22 chapters and numerous hours when will it?