Weaving together five heartbreaking stories, Bill Gaston transforms the cruelty of life into something not only beautiful but heartwarming. A recently divorced early retiree accidentally burns down his house on the day he pays off the mortgage, only to discover that for the first time in his life he's forgotten to pay a bill: his insurance premium. An old friend of his, a middle-aged musician, prepares for her suicide to end the pain of esophageal cancer. Her father, who left his family to study Buddhism in Tibet, ends his days in a Toronto facility for Alzheimer's patients. The three are tied together not only by their bonds of affection, but by a book called The World, written by the old man in his youth. The book, possibly biographical, tells the story of a historian who unearths a cache of letters, written in Chinese, in an abandoned leper colony off the coast of Victoria. He and the young Chinese translator fall in love, only to betray each other in the cruelest way possible, each violating what the other reveres most.
What listeners say about The World
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- Anonymous User
Such a sweet, quirky, sad but wonderful story.
I read this book several years ago and liked it so much that I kept it and reread. Having enjoyed the read of it made me want to hear it and it just gets better in the audio version. The narrator’s style really suits the story. I’m still holding on to my paper copy!