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The Authenticity Project

A Novel
Written by: Clare Pooley
Narrated by: Anna Cordell
Length: 10 hrs and 25 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (7 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

“A clever, uplifting book that entertains and makes you think.” (Sophie Kinsella, number-one New York Times best-selling author) 

The story of a solitary green notebook that brings together six strangers and leads to unexpected friendship, and even love.

Julian Jessop, an eccentric, lonely artist and septuagenarian believes that most people aren’t really honest with each other. But what if they were? And so he writes - in a plain, green journal - the truth about his own life and leaves it in his local café. It’s run by the incredibly tidy and efficient Monica, who furtively adds her own entry and leaves the book in the wine bar across the street. Before long, the others who find the green notebook add the truths about their own deepest selves - and soon find each other In Real Life at Monica’s Café. 

The Authenticity Project‘s cast of characters - including Hazard, the charming addict who makes a vow to get sober; Alice, the fabulous mommy Instagrammer whose real life is a lot less perfect than it looks online; and their other new friends - is by turns quirky and funny, heartbreakingly sad and painfully true to life. It’s a story about being brave and putting your real self forward - and finding out that it’s not as scary as it seems. In fact, it looks a lot like happiness.

The Authenticity Project is just the tonic for our times that listeners are clamoring for - and one they will take to their hearts and listen to with unabashed pleasure. 

©2020 Clare Pooley (P)2020 Penguin Audio

What the critics say

“A well-suited subject for the Instagram era, this book makes you realize that no one's life is what it seems.” (Good Morning America)

"An enjoyable, cozy novel that touches on tough topics." (Kirkus Reviews)

“[A] wistful, humorous tale . . . a beautiful and illuminating story of self-creation.” (Publishers Weekly)

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A perfect modern day novel

An original and imaginative story, real characters that are like able and quirky, and a genuinely uplifting message. A book that addresses the loneliness of modern society and offers some authentic and beautiful possibilities.

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How well do we know each other?

This is a book about people who are living one life while secretly hoping for a better one. How they meet and gradually change each other. The characters are beautifully drawn and feel very real. There are plenty of unexpected twists that keep things interesting. This would be a perfect book club book. First question - how well do we really know each other? Loved it all and will read it again.

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  • Storytellersrus
  • 2020-02-08

Slow start but stick with it

I was impatient with this novel in the beginning. The set up was quite complicated and not that compelling. I managed to keep listening and was rewarded with a deeply moving story. Sometimes insights were so targeted, I gasped. I believe I forgave my self for feeling some of the feelings expressed. Well done, Clare Pooley!

Anna Cordell added much to the reading of this tale. Her emphases made moments even more poignant.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Lucie W.
  • 2020-02-20

such a good book

The narrator was excellent! Good story line. No boring parts at all! She did all the different accents so well and the characters appearances had such detail that I could picture them as she read their parts.

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  • Ashleyh
  • 2020-02-14

Wonderfully written, soul food for your ears.

This book was enchanting. The characters are your friends instantly and I didn't want the book to end.

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  • Sarah
  • 2020-02-12

Not a good read

This book was strange and confusing. There is no rhyme or reason to it. This author claims to be sober but there is booze all throughout this book. I liked her sober diaries book but this one was for sure a waste of money. Irish the reviews reflected this as I would not go have purchased this book had I know. How bad it really was.

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  • CEK
  • 2020-02-11

Good Premise

It's hard to decide what genre is my favorite, but it's definitely not the typical down on his luck cop becomes PI. Too bad because there are a million of them. I look for books with unique story lines. The Authenticity Project has a unique story line which comes together nicely. It's a fun listen. I reserve 5 stars for really exceptional books. This is good, just not great.