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The Bookseller

A Novel
Narrated by: Kathe Mazur
Length: 11 hrs and 25 mins
Categories: Fiction, Contemporary
4 out of 5 stars (561 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

A provocative and hauntingly powerful debut novel reminiscent of Sliding Doors, The Bookseller follows a woman in the 1960s who must reconcile her reality with the tantalizing alternate world of her dreams.

Nothing is as permanent as it appears....

Denver, 1962. Kitty Miller has come to terms with her unconventional single life. She loves the bookshop she runs with her best friend, Frieda, and enjoys complete control over her day-to-day existence. She can come and go as she pleases, answering to no one. There was a man once, a doctor named Kevin, but it didn't quite work out the way Kitty had hoped.

Then the dreams begin.

Denver, 1963. Katharyn Andersson is married to Lars, the love of her life. They have beautiful children, an elegant home, and good friends. It's everything Kitty Miller once believed she wanted - but it exists only when she sleeps.

Convinced that these dreams are simply due to her overactive imagination, Kitty enjoys her nighttime forays into this alternate world. But with each visit, the more irresistibly real Katharyn's life becomes. Can she choose which life she wants? If so what is the cost of becoming Katharyn? As the line between her worlds begins to blur, Kitty must figure out what is real and what is imagined.

©2015 Cynthia Swanson (P)2015 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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

mixed feelings

The idea was wonderful but the narrators voice grew old quickly and the plot lost steam. Wasn't too hard to figure out where she was going with the story and if I had been literally reading the book I would have skimmed. Description of Denver in the 1960s was enjoyable as was the relationships between "sisters" and mother/father/daughter. Relationship with children felt too Norman Rockwell on one hand and too uncomfortable on the other. Very disturbing emotional reaction to special needs.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Timothy
  • Springfield, OR, United States
  • 06-04-15

Meh

Interesting premise. Too bad that it's stretched out to a point it's very anticlimactic.

The narrator is pretty good, the story is not bad. It just lacks luster I guess.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Unexpectedly Intriguing - I couldn't stop listening!

If you could sum up The Bookseller in three words, what would they be?

Intriguing, complex, relatable

Who was your favorite character and why?

Katherine/Kitty I loved the contrast of the same character struggling to find reality in two very different lives. She was able to see herself from two perspectives and specifically how other key people in each life shaped the woman she had become.I related to her in many ways but particularly how she deeply cared for her loved ones and their happiness. Furthermore, I think any wife/mother/career woman can relate to how she had to prioritize and shift her time, effort, and interest as her life evolved as Katherine.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

I did not have an emotional reaction but I had an extreme need to keep listening to this book. It captured my attention from the beginning (which doesn't happen often). I found myself listening every free minute I could find and increasing the reading speed to get to the end within 3 days.

Any additional comments?

This book really made me think not only about the interesting storyline of two parallel lives; but about being a woman--wife, mother, friend, and daughter--in the 1960s. I don't often take the time to write a review as soon as I finish a book but this one inspired me to encourage others to listen to this intriguing book!

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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I had to give up on this one...

What disappointed you about The Bookseller?

It is such an interesting premise, and then...nothing happens! There is no character development. Lars, Frida, and Catherine all are flat, and lifeless. There was a 45 minute stretch where Catherine was describing shoe shopping for her children at a suburban shopping mall, and I almost fell asleep, but I slugged it out, hoping to be rewarded with some plot development. No such luck.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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No no no

Yuck. I didn't realize it was a romance novel. I might have been okay with that but the performer should be embarrassed about the characters voices.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Wow

I great page turner. I couldn't wait to hear more. I loved the voices and descriptions of places and events, it made me feel like I was there too.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Bookseller enjoyable listen

An enjoyable listen. Good story for traveling. Nothing too heavy just a light read. Would recommend as a quick time passer

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Daryl
  • Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
  • 10-30-15

Started off Interesting

I enjoyed about the first half of the book, and then I knew where the author was going. At that point, I had NO idea how I could manage another 5 hours of this.
It was OK, but tried to stuff too many themes - race, autism, grief, - into the book, so much so that none of them were flushed out.
And then if became a Hallmark card...
Kathe Mazur, as always, did a good narrating job on this book; too bad it wasn't a better book...

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Couldn't stop listening!

Fascinating! Extremely engaging. I could not put this book down and thoughts of Kitty/Katharyn stayed with me for days after.

The story line was very well written and I fell in love with the characters. I enjoyed the details of life in the 60's (like coffee percolators) and the references to the historical events of the times (Cuban Missile Crisis, Patsy Cline's plane crash). She mentions quite a few books I've never heard of and would like to look into.

This is a great look at the "what if's" in our lives.

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

Just okay but with an interesting twist.

This was one of those books that sounded pretty interesting in the description. A bookseller entering a dream world........ well, it was just that, when Kitty would fall asleep she would enter another life, her "dream life" as she called it. This dream life ran pretty parallel to hers with a few exceptions. I won't spoil it for anyone who would like to give this a listen. It was an interesting story with an interesting twist towards the end. If I was reading this book without the audio part, I would probably enjoy this book more. The part that I didn't care for was the narrator. Her pronouncation of Kitty's given name of Katherine was always pronounced Katharine, emphasizing the 'arine' portion of her name. What started out as a bit annoying became almost unbearable as the story went on. Maybe in the written book, it is pronounced that way but if not, well, it's just annoying. The voices used for the children was also annoying but I got past that. This is of course only my opinion and the next listener might enjoy Ms. Mazur's narration. The basis of the story was pretty good but I had to take into consideration the entire listening experience for this review.