I Know This Much Is True

Narrated by: Ken Howard
Length: 5 hrs and 42 mins
4 out of 5 stars (1,092 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Identical twins Dominick and Thomas Birdsey were born in the waning moments of 1949 and the opening minutes of 1950. Now at 40, Dominick's entire life has been compromised and constricted by anger and fear, by the paranoid schizophrenic twin brother he both loves and resents, and by the past they shared with their adoptive father, Ray, a spit-and polish ex-Navy man, and their long-suffering mother, Concettina. The brothers' relationship undergoes the ultimate test when Thomas commits an unthinkable act that threatens the tenuous balance of both his and Dominick's lives. Wally Lamb's long awaited follow-up to the critically acclaimed novel She's Come Undone is narrated by Tony Award-winning actor Ken Howard.
(P) and ©1998 HarperCollins Publishers Inc., All Rights Reserved, Harper Audio, A Division of HarperCollins Publishers

Critic Reviews

Publishers Weekly Listen Up Award: Best Audio of 1998, Fiction

"This award-winning Broadway stalwart here shows himself to be as adept behind the mike as behind the footlights." (AudioFile

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What listeners say about I Know This Much Is True

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    542
  • 4 Stars
    305
  • 3 Stars
    156
  • 2 Stars
    53
  • 1 Stars
    36
Performance
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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    416
  • 4 Stars
    222
  • 3 Stars
    148
  • 2 Stars
    50
  • 1 Stars
    33
Story
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    478
  • 4 Stars
    229
  • 3 Stars
    96
  • 2 Stars
    34
  • 1 Stars
    28

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars

Disappointing

Much of the substqance of this fine book was lost as a result of it being abridged. I had read the book previously and was grossly disapointed in the audiobook.

86 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

I could tell a lot was missing

I really enjoyed this story, but even though I never read the whole book, it was so obvious that there where huge gaps and holes. I still gave it 5 stars, but would love to hear the unabridged version of this. 6 hours is not enough time for character development, or to do justice to a saga like this one. It's a shame neither audible or itunes offers an unabridged version.

49 people found this helpful

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

Abridging does not do the story justice.

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

The book, yes. This audiobook, no.

What could Wally Lamb have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

Not approve cutting out so much of a favorite book in the audiobook version

Any additional comments?

Use the six hours to start on an unabridged version or read the book. The full text is amazing, but too much is cut out here, leaving the story muddled, jumbled, confusing, and incomplete.

36 people found this helpful

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

Abridged version=horrible!

This is one of my all time favorite books. Too bad this abridged version leaves out half the story and I am not exaggerating. I'm so shocked at how much they left out I'm going to try to contact the author. The only positive is that now I know to NEVER listen to the abridged version of ANYTHING! The definition of abridged is to "shorten a story without losing the sense of the story." There is no story with what audible has done to it. At least they refunded my credit.

22 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Family Matters

Wally Lamb weaves a tapestry of rejection and forgiveness. In this story of twins, Dominic and Partick are the last remnants of the Tempesta family that are becoming unraveled; Dominic by his apparent rejection by his family and Patrick by his schizophrenia. Lamb tells the story through the eyes of the angry, self-pitying Dominic who inherits two things that change his life, his schizo brother and the memoirs of his cruel grandfather. How Dominic deals with his inheritence is the subject of the plot. Dominic comes to realize that this much is true; mutts make good dogs, out of the rich loam of forgiveness love is found and all things are circular. This book will appeal to anyone who has a disfunctional family, especially an immigrant family. The story is wonderous because Lamb combines the right amount of realism with myth and superstition to tell a most intriguing story. This book is in the top ten of bookk I have ever read.

13 people found this helpful

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

READ THIS BOOK FIRST. IT'S STUNNING.

Beautifully read. SHOULD NOT HAVE BEEN ABBRIDGED. Wally Lamb is a sublime writer. The best.

11 people found this helpful

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

Abridged

I love this book and only have a couple hundred pages left. I thought I might finish it on a car ride, but turns out it is missing whole sections. Unfortunately pretty useless.

11 people found this helpful

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

Excellent story, although a lot of it was left out

Where does I Know This Much Is True rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

This was my first one and I was mildly disappointed that the story ha been cut short.

If you’ve listened to books by Wally Lamb before, how does this one compare?

I love Wally Lamb. But as I said above, I wish they hadn't cut
The story short.

Which scene was your favorite?

I can't pick just one.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

It's a large book, so no.

10 people found this helpful

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

Big fan of Wally Lamb

What did you love best about I Know This Much Is True?

I find Wally Lamb's writing to be honest, real, and gripping.

What did you like best about this story?

I couldn't stop listening.

What about Ken Howard’s performance did you like?

Excellent delivery.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

Each step in the process of realizing that Dom wasn't so different from his twin after all.

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

A Must Read

This is the novel that spurred my addiction to audiobooks. This is a powerfully human story. Lamb enables the reader to experience pain and joy, hope and despair, through his well developed characters. When I finished the very lengthy unabridged version, I felt a strong sense of loss, because I truly missed the characters. Also, his other novel is similarly moving.

7 people found this helpful

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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Andrew Costa
  • 03-31-20

Poor narration of a good story

Narration is very poor audio quality and the narrator has ongoing disruptions and interference in the background.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 05-08-20

Rapprochement

Lamb captures the humanity and reality of severe, enduring mental illness, the commonness of lives fraught with uncertainty, imperfection and ambivalence, and the fragile peace that can be found in self-forgiveness. The story is rich with metaphor and allegory.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 03-14-20

Soon to be a movie

I have read this book twice now listened and cannot wait for the interpretation into film.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 06-28-19

A good story to reflect on

The story at times felt like rambling but had some deep messages in there. The most frustrating thing about this audiobook though was there was often another voice in the background, it extremely distracting at times, however the narrator spoke with a strong clear voice.