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Echo

Written by: Pam Muñoz Ryan
Length: 10 hrs and 31 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (30 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Audie Award, Middle Grade, 2016

Music, magic, and a real-life miracle meld in this virtuosic, genre-defying tour de force from storytelling maestro Pam Muñoz Ryan.

Lost and alone in the forbidden Black Forest, Otto meets three mysterious sisters and suddenly finds himself entwined in a puzzling quest involving a prophecy, a promise, and a harmonica. Decades later Friedrich in Germany, Mike in Pennsylvania, and Ivy in California each becomes interwoven when the very same harmonica lands in their lives, binding them by an invisible thread of destiny. All the children face daunting challenges: rescuing a father, protecting a brother, holding a family together. How their suspenseful solo stories converge in an orchestral crescendo will resound in your heart long after the last note has been struck.

Richly imagined and structurally innovative, Echo pushes the boundaries of form and shows us what is possible in how we tell stories. With music by Corky Siegel.

©2015 Pam Muñoz Ryan (P)2015 Scholastic Inc.

What the critics say

"A riveting exploration of that which destroys and that which heals." (AudioFile)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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Treat yourself and listen to the audiobook

This is a book that is meant to be listened to. Do yourself a favor and listen to the audiobook. The story is great and the audiobook incorporates the music into the story- absolutely worth it.

This is my favourite kind of story. There's a bit of magic, and the story follows a harmonica through 4 storylines. You learn about each character and the role the harmonica plays in their life. Each of their stories reaches a climax, then the narrative switches to the next character. In the end, the stories interconnect and weave together for a beautiful ending.

1 person found this helpful

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A book meant to be heard

The richness of this story is beautifully presented with its heartwarming music and soothing voices. I couldn't wait to get back into my car (where I listen to audio books) to hear if Frederick gets help or Micheal finds a home or how brave Ivy becomes. The harmonica links all three stories together and culminates in a triumphant ending, all the while interspersed with the haunting notes of instruments like the piano, cello and yes, the harmonica. #Audible1

1 person found this helpful

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Awesome book!

Super super sad story but verry well written! I loved reading it! I definitely recommend it.

1 person found this helpful

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The whole family loved this book!

Loved the history. Led to many interesting discussions. Would highly recommend it to families and teachers.

1 person found this helpful

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  • JMA
  • 2020-02-22

Good story, good narration but...

I really did not like the musical interludes. I prefer to stay with my imagination and felt the music was an unwanted distraction.

The book was very good and was reminiscent of old story books and fairy tales.

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Really enjoyable read!!!!!!

listening to this story made me wish they had this in a movie I loved it it's a different type of novel hopefully one day they make a family movie out of it awesome.

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Surprisingly involving and delightful.

Very timely lessons for today. Chilling reminders of man's inhumanity to man wrapped up in stories of hope and triumph with just enough magic to bring it all together. Adults will get as mch out it as younger readers who will get to see what our collective recent history can teach us. I would like to see this read in schools and used as a teaching tool. Fruitful discussions to be had from this tale that will cast light on current affairs

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a touching story

I felt the plot was a bit predictable but it is still a story that pulls at your heart with equal amounts of melancholy and optimism. The audio makes it much much better than if you were to read the book.

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  • tru britty
  • 2015-07-28

One of the best audio productions I have heard

Not only is this a magical story about a harmonica involving multiple storylines, but this is one of the best produced audiobooks I have ever heard.

There is music everywhere and directly related to the plot. You hear harmonica, cello, piano and even a vocal rendition of Sone Enchanted Evening. I don't know what kind of mouth harp that was but it had a beautiful sound. Sounded like a tremolo harp.

These interconnected stories are about the magic of music and the love of family to overcome the most terrifying obstacles, including Hitler's Germany.

I wish there were more audiobooks like this. I feel like I have just returned from an incredible journey.

59 people found this helpful

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  • Kay
  • 2015-09-19

Wonderful story

Ryan has written a story that is parrt fantasy, part historical fiction - all wonderful.
If you have the chance - listen to the audio version of this book. The inclusion of the harmonica music brings the story to life.
Also, any age would enjoy this book. It would be an excellent choice for a family to listen to together.

38 people found this helpful

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  • Lori
  • 2015-08-11

THIS is storytelling!

I can't even imagine reading this versus listening to it! While the story is lovely, it was the way they sprinkled it with music that made it such a special listen. The narrators were excellent and the way the stories all came together at the end was perfect. Listening to this was like a night out at the theatre.

29 people found this helpful

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  • BlueHummie
  • 2015-11-20

A Wonderful Story

My 12 year old son and I listened to this story over the course of a month only while riding in the car. This is an epic tale that will renew your appreciation for life, we were weeping in the end. Echo was written to be heard...music is an integral part of the story and the audio book adds the music bringing the novel to life and could be considered another character. Don't read this book, listen to it.

25 people found this helpful

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  • A. Brandon Bohling
  • 2015-09-10

One of the best!

Our family listened to this book on a summer road trip. It was fantastic and exceeded our expectations. The reading and music elements made the story come alive. The storylines sticks with you with characters kids can look up to.

19 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2015-11-27

You will just want to sit down, listen, enjoy.

The weaving of the stories was exceptional and pushed me to keep "going".
One for the bookshelf to re-read, etc.

10 people found this helpful

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  • Syd Young
  • 2015-10-22

Enchanted Echo

This may be the best audio book production I've ever heard. A fairy tale with harmonic singing and weeping, addressing the evils in this world while sprinkling hope like fairy dust. A threefold story, interwoven around hate, prejudice, misery and irony. Can they be conquered by faith, hope and love?

If you have children, buy this and go on vacation with them and listen with them. Or turn off the TV and listen while working a puzzle. If you don't, borrow some. Or just listen by yourself, but you are going to want to pass it on.

Excellent. Thank you Pam Munoz Ryan and the audio team that put this together. Now can I please buy the music album?

6 people found this helpful

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  • Renee Toy
  • 2015-08-26

Wonderful

This was s lovely, warm, and enchanting book. The audio version adds such a dimension and fullness that I will recommend it to everyone. This is a gem!

6 people found this helpful

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  • Wayne
  • 2015-12-20

Magnificant! Perfection!

Echo was written for late pre-teens and early teens. It is perfect for its target audience, but most adults will also enjoy it immensely. There are 4 stories and four main characters woven together with music being the common theme. If ever a book were written for the audiobook format, Echo is that book. Echo is sure to become a classic.

19 people found this helpful

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  • Carole T.
  • 2017-09-16

A Magical and Very Special Listen!


Can I please encourage everyone in the world to listen to this?

Yes, it's a children's book. It's also a fairy tale, well set up in the book's first section. Then, however, it proceeds to three separate stories of three very real and irresistible children. Respectively, the listener is quickly and completely drawn into a different part of the planet in 1933, 1935, and l942.

There's magic, with a hint of schmaltz and occasional tear-jerkiness. But, make no mistake, sometimes sentiment is genuine, and shouldn't we all be willing to weep occasionally at the injustices and hardship in the world? Suspend disbelief and check cynicism at the door!

This book is really about love, belonging, resilience, persistence, and tolerance. It's also very much about music and therefore impossible to imagine a better medium than Audible for maximum enjoyment. The narrators are perfect, and music comes when music should throughout.

It's special. It's magical. An unforgettable listening experience for all ages.

8 people found this helpful