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And the Birds Rained Down

Length: 5 hrs and 10 mins
5 out of 5 stars (4 ratings)

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Audible Editor Reviews

An entire cast of performers was assembled to bring this hushed novel to rich audiobook life. Five distinct voices represent different characters, making perspective shifts easy to follow and compelling, arguably beyond what reading this book would accomplish. The novel is the first Canadian novel to win France’s prestigious Prix des Cinq Continents de la Francophonie award.

A young, female photographer arrives in a remote Canadian forest in search of a long-missing person. She finds two old men, octogenarians, living out a dream of freedom, and an old woman living out the freedom of a dream. In short bursts of beautiful, contemplative prose, French-Canadian author Jocelyne Saucier offers the listener an interior journey informed by its exterior setting: light, shade, trees, cold, death...

Publisher's Summary

Tom and Charlie are living out what's left of their lives on their own terms in a remote forest, two pot growers their only connection to the outside world. But then two women arrive - a photographer on the trail of survivors of a decades-ago forest fire and an elderly escapee from a psychiatric institution - and everything changes.

And the Birds Rained Down, the recipient of several prizes, is a haunting meditation on aging and self-determination.

Please note: The French version came before the English translation.

©2011 Jocelyne Saucier, © 2012 Rhonda Mullins, English Translation. (P)2013 Audible, Inc.

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A thing of beauty

The author John Gardner famously declared that there are only two plots in all of literature: someone goes on a journey or a stranger comes to town. In this quiet novel, two strangers, through different circumstances, arrive in the reclusive wilderness camp of three old men who have turned their back on the world. The story that ensues is one of broken people, love, and healing.

Originally written in French by Jocelyne Saucier and translated by Rhonda Mullins, the writing (and the English translation) is a thing of beauty. The tone is gentle and pulls the reader into the story. One of the men is a survivor of the great Matheson fire of 1916 and, as the plot unfolds in the present (the setting is actually mid-nineties), more and more details of his past are unearthed.

This book is a short one and definitely worth the effort. #Audible1

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  • Patricia Filteau
  • 2015-03-23

Magical and raw, compassionate and compelling

This narrator illuminated Jocelyne Saucier's exquisite tale about individuals who have the courage to make their own choices on how to live and die. An important story, pulling on the threads that comprise the fabric of the Canadian experience. It explores the healing strength of living simply close to wilderness to iced by love. This is a novel that pushes against barriers and gently sets them aside to embrace a satisfying way of life. The tale is told in sparse, precise yet poetically beautiful prose.