• The Cuckoo's Cry

  • An Audible Original Novella
  • By: Caroline Overington
  • Narrated by: Aimee Horne
  • Length: 4 hrs and 43 mins
  • 4.3 out of 5 stars (18,200 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

On the eve of the global lockdown, Don Barlow opens the door of his old beachside cottage to find a pretty girl with pink-tipped hair, claiming to have nowhere to go. 

He allows her entry, and so begins a mystery set in unprecedented times: with the virus raging outside their home, the girl cannot be asked to leave, but what does he risk by having her stay?

©2020 Caroline Overington (P)2020 Audible Australia Pty Ltd.

Our favorite moments from The Cuckoo's Cry

"Don Barlow was home alone..."
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"It might still be good."
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"I know this must sound weird."
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  • The Cuckoo's Cry
  • "Don Barlow was home alone..."
  • The Cuckoo's Cry
  • "It might still be good."
  • The Cuckoo's Cry
  • "I know this must sound weird."

About the Creator

Caroline Overington is an award-winning writer and a former foreign correspondent. She is the author of 13 books, including nine crime thrillers; and a historical study of 19th century women's suffrage called Last Woman Hanged, which won the 2016 Davitt Prize. She has a home in beachside Bondi that she shares with her partner, boy-girl twins, and an old blue dog.

About the Performer

Aimee Horne is an Australian voiceover artist and actor. Trained at National Institute of Dramatic Arts (NIDA), she has worked extensively in theater, film, television, and radio. Aimee voiced Cottontail in the animated feature Peter Rabbit 2: The Runaway. Some of her other voice credits include FX sketch animation series, Psychotown and feature documentary, Brabham: The Untold Story of Formula One. Since 2013, Aimee has been lending her voice to major international projects and national campaigns. She has narrated eight audiobooks and delights in bringing an author’s story to new audiences. She loves traveling, animals, watching TV murder mysteries, and lives in Sydney with her partner.

What listeners say about The Cuckoo's Cry

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Story
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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Slow burning Aussie suspense in the time of COVID

One of the things I like about the mystery/suspense genre is the age equality in main characters. Action, romance, and horror tend to star young, fit adults in their 20s and 30s, or 40s tops. Here, Don Barlow is a 70s retiree hunkering down in his beachside Australian pad during COVID-19. Nice to see that old folks can star in good fiction too. (I say that with love from the mid-century mark).

Riding out COVID in the U.S., I found the Australian treatment of it interesting. The writing really brought the culture and the characters alive and I learned some new terms, like budgies (Speedos style swimsuits) and milos (chocolate malted drinks). I very much enjoyed the narrator’s Australian voice. Several of the month’s free Audible selections feature outstanding female narrators capable of great range in voicing genders, ages, and accents. Bravo.

As the title suggests, the central mystery is whether the 19 year old appearing at his door is really who she claims to be. The suspense builds gradually, with enough twists along the way to make me doubt my predictions. I did bump the speed to 1.3x, but this was a nice simmering suspense.

Mild touching on topics of crime, violence, and teen pregnancy, but not in any graphic or profane way.

171 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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A Multi-faceted Exploration of "Social Isolation"

I didn't expect to see a deep family drama exploring the many types of social isolation in the Covid19 era published quite so soon! The Cuckoo's Cry is a moving revelation of family secrets and personal tragedies within the confines of class, sex, and social mores. The characters are appealing and finely drawn. The plot grabs your attention and doesn't let go. I laughed and cried--sometimes at the same time. All this in an absorbing drama running under five hours. Bravo!

(P.S. Thanks, too, for the new, softer female voice instead of Audible's former explosive tagline at the end!)

67 people found this helpful

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A good story.

I did not expect the ending. Liked the narration by all the different characters. A good story.

47 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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The best Audible Original I’ve listened to so far!

I loved the story and the performance. Not trite or predictable. It kept me listening. I like this author.

40 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Nice mystery

I had to give a review for this audible original. It was quite a pleasant surprise to listen to this one. A well written story with great personalities and a few twists and turns. An enjoyable 4 hour escape.

38 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Captivating

A sweet but melancholy story of family, old loves, anger and endearment. A story line we all know from some other time.

34 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Great little story to pass the time!

Enjoyed the story for a lazy afternoon. I would welcome another book by this author. Predictable but good!

26 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Didn’t expect that ending!

Was properly impressed, and not just in for a free audible book. It was really good and for a moment when I thought it was gonna be predictable, I was totally wrong

25 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Mo
  • 07-04-20

Character driven mystery...

...in which some of the characters are drawn better than others.

I like the narrator's voice and, overall, this book is enjoyable if you're in the mood for a short suspense/mystery novel (one that won't give you nightmares).

Even though I didn't find the end very compelling, I do think there's some food for thought throughout the book especially in the family dynamic.

25 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Interesting listen but

but there are gaps that aren't explained if they were meant to enhance the story - like why mother and father state the same child was born in two d
different years.

15 people found this helpful

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  • Lori
  • 10-01-21

A story of our time.

This was an interesting listen as it covered recent times and Covid 19. Nice pace and I like that one of the main characters was from the older generation. Aimee Horne was good as the narrator.

3 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Mrs C
  • 10-04-21

Good story & great ending

This was certainly a refreshing change from my usual crime & drama reads.
A very pleasant & relaxing story with just a hint of drama, good storyline throughout & very enjoyable.

2 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • R. Ellis
  • 10-01-21

What a lovely story!

I thoroughly enjoyed this story. It was well written and well narrated, easy listening with just enough ‘what’s going to happen next’ to keep you listening. And as someone of the same age as the ‘elderly’ man in the story, born around the same time, I was with him all the way!

Heartily recommended.

2 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • patrizia
  • 02-09-22

Quiet and easy to listen too

A pleasant change from most mystery/ murders and suspense . Easy to listen too and a good narrator.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • D. Murray
  • 11-24-21

enjoyable

really sweet story an easy listen, and very current I would recommend if you want an uncomplicated listen

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 07-10-22

lovely

Not the most amazing story but really good for a short one. very well read and a good ending too.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 07-06-22

Quick but excellent story

Great listen, good narrative and a short story worth listening too. With a totally unexpected ending.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Morgan Leigh Mcmahon
  • 07-02-22

Fast paced and gripping

Right from the get go, the reader will know something isn’t quite right with this character.
I was gripped and needed to know what the twist would be, which I was very surprised at.
Shorter audiobook than I’d normally go for but I really enjoyed this.
The characters were good, I was getting worked up by his daughter in the book and felt frustration right until nearer the end.
I really enjoyed this

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  • L. H. De Laune
  • 06-30-22

Short but very enjoyable

Really enjoyed the story, especially the references to Covid. An important moment in history which needs documenting .
A clever concept and good twist.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Misty
  • 06-29-22

great book

i thought the story was true to life very good i really enjoyed the story very much

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  • Anonymous User
  • 08-03-20

Quick and interesting read

Loved that this was free (of course!) but was surprisingly impressed with the storyline and twists!
Really enjoyed it 😍

10 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Sharon B Clark
  • 08-25-20

The Cuckoos Cry

A modern story set during the COVID-19 lockdown. An engaging story that you will end up listening to in one sitting as the story is so gripping and brilliantly narrated. The only thing I did not like was the blasphemy.

9 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 08-15-20

Just ok story

I nearly gave up several times because it's a pretty ordinary story but persevered and in the end it was ok to listen to. Nothing outstanding or memorable tho.

7 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Ree
  • 08-01-20

Excellent

This is a enjoyable short story with an interesting twist, I highly recommend this book

6 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • D. Durham
  • 07-15-20

Outstanding!

Loved this story. Couldn't put it down.
Great realisation by Aimee the narrator. Thanks Caroline.

6 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Malaiea
  • 08-21-20

A warm, wonderful story.

With a twist at the end. A great book to curt up with in iso.

5 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Yve James
  • 08-27-20

For a short story It Held me every second!

I really enjoyed the story, the performance, everything about this audible! So very entertaining!

4 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • starsunderwater
  • 07-01-21

Excellent story incorporating the pandemic in the timeline

This is the second book I’ve listened to which incorporated the pandemic in the background. I was pleasantly surprised at how engaged I was by the plot and characters and couldn’t stop listening. As a Victorian with lockdown fatigue this did not trigger any unpleasant memories, and I’m sure those who know Sydney will enjoy the local references.

3 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Joey
  • 11-14-20

Chosen as read by Aime and was not disappointed!

Very much enjoyed this book. A little repetitive with some conversations but I suppose real life is that way. The story holds reader interest long term. Had chosen to read as enjoyed another book read by Aimee Horne and she is just amazing!

3 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Amanda Dettrick
  • 10-08-20