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Slow start but fascinating story

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

Reviewed: 2019-10-31

The first chapter was a little painful to get through but I'm glad I persisted. The story of two sisters with a neglectful mother isn't a new idea but I like the depth that it's examined of the effect on the sisters. There's no sugar coating or happy endings. It's complicated and messy. The sister Lark is the narrator and she's hard to like or understand but she is fascinating to listen to. She starts to unravel the story through her own neuroses and you really start to get a sense of how weird the world must see her. In contrast to her sister Robin who is prettier and more poised but ultimately can't escape the outcome of their childhood either and she plummets into her own weirdness. It's a story of trauma told by two sisters who barely even know how badly they've been traumatized and how they survive it. Often sad but always interesting. The writing is magnificent and the narrator is really good despite playing all the parts... it just works.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

Such a well written and developed story

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

Reviewed: 2019-10-13

I grew to love these characters, all of them, even the evil step mother at the end. Maeve and Danny are the main characters, the story starts with them as children in a wondrous architectural marvel of a house - The Dutch House, named for the wealthy Dutch family that designed and built it. The house ultimately holds all the secrets to this family's undoing, it affects every person differently, not in any mystical way, just because of its opulence and lavish appeal. Not everyone sees it the same or feels the same. Maeve is a strong and loyal sister to Danny but a force not many others can handle. Danny clings to Maeve like a life raft but starts to find his own way. It's so well written and descriptive, I felt very connected to the characters, right down to what they might wear. A lot of sadness throughout that affects you as the reader, right to your core because is relatable sadness - divorce, illness, broken relationships, generational apathy.

I wasn't sure I would like Tom Hanks as the single narrator but he has found a way to the top of my list of narrators. It is a pleasure to listen to. I genuinely hope he narrates more.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

Progressive and stirring

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

Reviewed: 2019-07-13

The narration is excellent... really brought this book to life.

This book explores women's sexuality through the ages with out holding back. it offers a rare glimpse of living one's life exactly as they want to, the victories of that and the heartbreak of it. The reality of the back lash when a woman owns her sexuality, it was so relatable.

The story spans the 20s into the 70s... explores "theater life" and the personalities that dared to stray from societies definition of family and create their own. It's a beautiful, heartwrenching coming of age and looking back all at the same time. Loved this book so much.

Historical ccontent turned into a riveting story

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

Reviewed: 2019-06-30

I LOVED this book.

The synopsis does little to prepare you for the complexity and magic of this story. It sat in my wish list for months because I didn't get the purpose of the story. But the story covers historical events in Mexico in the early 1900s and follows a particular family with their multi- generation household and a dash of a magical boy found. The narration is so good, you will genuinely miss them when the book is over.

The story unfolds slowly and allows for great detail of each event but you will be glad for using your patience in the beginning because it creates such an intimate and emotional experience. You will get to know the characters so well you start to be able to predict their reactions but are delighted to read about them anyways.

I learned so much about Mexican history and cultural norms and how families functioned through the decades. The main family is a well to do family but through them, you get to know many of the other townspeople. You learn about their love and loyalty and tradition. I was particularly fond of Mama - Beatrice, and fascinated with the found Bee Boy and Nana Raha and their strange mystical and beautiful connection. You will see shades of your own family in this story and identify with their roles and feelings.

I was sitting in my car listening to this book because I couldn't stop hearing it. The voices are so perfect and intriguing. it is probably my new favorite audible. You will cry... and parts will have you on the edge of your seat. You will be endeared by Beatrice and Fransisco's love story and the evolution of their shared lives together. Just a beautiful book.

lovely story

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 2019-05-30

It had some slow moments but overall once you get into the narration style (from the dog's point of view) it was a great listen. I like the theory behind a dog's purpose, it was very comforting to think about my own dogs who have passed. It's a great story overall and I highly recommend.

Heartbreaking and impossible to put away

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

Reviewed: 2019-04-26

The story is easy to get into and I like that they seperate the narration out between the characters but they continue using a man's voice for the female character during his section and it gives that character a different, weaker, whinier tone. Otherwise, the story is captivating and heartbreaking. It makes you question what you would do in their circumstances. Loved the ending. So glad they did an epilogue.

slow to start

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

Reviewed: 2019-03-05

the first 2 chapters were very slow but it was worth the wait. it's a great story with several twists. the narration is extremely pleasant.

Sad and charming...I didn't want it to end.

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

Reviewed: 2018-12-06

It was one of the first books that I was satisfied with the ending. The narration was really perfect, the characters so complex and the plot engaging. You think it's just a story about 2 orphans ...but it's so much more.

Enjoyed!

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 2018-11-21

Really enjoyed the pace and narrative of this book. I felt like I really knew the characters by books end and I was sad it was over.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Good book to listen to in between work visits

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

Reviewed: 2018-01-25

I drive all day and loved listening to this book in between. It was funny and poignant and frankly made me cry a few times.