Your audiobook is waiting…

Reservation Road

Narrated by: various
Length: 9 hrs and 25 mins
Categories: Fiction, Contemporary
4 out of 5 stars (83 ratings)

$14.95/month after 30 days. Cancel anytime.

OR
In Cart

Publisher's Summary

“Haunting.... A powerful and affecting novel.” (The New York Times)

A tragic accident sets in motion a cycle of violence and retribution in John Burnham Schwartz’s riveting novel Reservation Road

Two haunted men and their families are engulfed by the emotions surrounding an unexpected and horrendous death. Ethan, a respected professor of literature at a small New England college, is wracked by an obsession with revenge that threatens to tear his family apart. Dwight, a man at once fleeing his crime and hoping to get caught, wrestles with overwhelming guilt and his sense of obligation to his son. 

As these two men’s lives unravel, Reservation Road moves to its startling conclusion. This is an astonishing tale of love and loss, rage and redemption, that is as suspenseful as it is emotionally compelling.

©1998 John Burnham Schwartz (P)2007 Books on Tape

Critic Reviews

"Schwartz's haunting tale, overflowing with thinly veiled lessons in life, is nothing short of captivating." (Booklist)

"A triumph of form, pacing and power...character-driven as it is, it reads like a thriller, swift and complete." (New York Times)  

"Cassandra Campbell, Robertson Dean, and Arthur Morey give controlled performances that make the disintegration of lives all the more powerful by their restraint. Each actor delivers an audio gem, performing Schwartz’s clean, clear prose in a manner that feels like poetry - lyrical, absorbing, and completely honest." (AudioFile

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    21
  • 4 Stars
    32
  • 3 Stars
    23
  • 2 Stars
    4
  • 1 Stars
    3

Performance

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    8
  • 4 Stars
    10
  • 3 Stars
    3
  • 2 Stars
    1
  • 1 Stars
    0

Story

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    6
  • 4 Stars
    10
  • 3 Stars
    5
  • 2 Stars
    2
  • 1 Stars
    0

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

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars

It Had Potential

Story line was interesting from the start. The whole book is written in the first person and deals primarily with what each of the characters is feeling about the hit and run accident which killed Ethan and Grace's 10 year old son Josh. You get a bit of what Josh's sister is feeling as well. The other side of the coin is the guy who hit Josh with his car. All the emotions and guilt that he is going through.
There were 3 different narrators for each of the main characters, so you always know exactly which person is being portrayed at all times. They all did a pretty good job.
The book didn't come together for me at the end as well as it could have. It had the potential of being far more exciting. The author set the scene so it could have ended any number of ways. Personally, it left me feeling blah.
I believe they made a movie out of this book and it is coming out in November 2007. I think I'll wait for it to come out on video. I've spent enough on this one.

9 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Aj
  • 07-30-08

Had me crying on the way to work.

The use of 3 voices in this recording works extremely well and pulls you right into the heads of each character. I wasn't going to renew my subscription but this book changed my mind.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

Enthralling from start to finish

Not my usual cup of tea, and even dreaded starting it, but the book captivated me from start. All three main characters were intriguingly drawn, and the story had enough suspense to make you want to listen to the next chapter. Only drawback was ending was somewhat predictable.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars

Grief orgy

It's one hour of tragedy, six hours of grief and misery and people mistreating one another (and claiming they simply can't help themselves), and then an hour of not-quite resolution. The audio performances are all strong, but the book is overwritten, repetitious and largely stagnant. A sample: "I paused, like falling into a bottomless pool of sadness." Now imagine 1,000 variations on that sentence. And what do we learn? Loss messes people up, but they may retain just enough humanity to avert complete self-destruction. Grief is presented in endless explication and iteration--all of which may ring true, but that's not reason enough to want to hear it, however impressed the author is with his own language skills. This story could have made a terrific short story--it ends like a short story--but instead it's bloated and glacial. I listened to the whole thing in a few days, expecting always that the plot would kick in at any moment. Finally it does...and then sputters and ends abruptly.

3 people found this helpful

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

Excellent book

Very dynamic characters -- they jump right off the page; flawless writing; very entertaining story. Can't wait to read the sequel!

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

very strong story !!!

As father of son, it is a story one you should listen/read. As written beofre, by a fellow reader, you will need time to recover and the story indeed stays with you for a very long time. strongle recommanded if you want to endure the power of your next of kin.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

excitment and thriller, but oh so sad.

I wish the ending was better and not so sad but the book as a whole was good. Having lost a child myself I felt the grief of these parents but was outraged at the ending.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars

Liked it, but...

I liked the exposition in this novel -- the juxtaposition of the two families who are simultaneously very different yet quite similar. But the ending was, for lack of a better word, lame.