Richard is a modern day everyman; a middle-aged divorcee trading stocks out of his home. He has done such a good job getting his life under control that he needs no one. His life has slowed almost to a standstill until two incidents conspire to hurl him back into the world. One day he wakes up with a knotty cramp in his back, which rapidly develops into an all-consuming pain. At the same time a wide hole appears outside his living room window, threatening the foundations of his house.
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©2006 A. M. Homes; (P)2007 Recorded Books, LLC
A Richard and Judy Book Club selection.
Having read the book, I wondered what listening to it would give, but this is a well chosen narrator whose reading does the book definite justice.
This is well worth a listen, and a read. A book that gives you faith and hope to start over again.
I thing this was a bit of a hopeful requiem for a world Homes would like to live in. It was a story about redemption and second chances. A story for the mostly hopeless and minorly hopeful that real and enduring change is possible. It was a tender and warm story about trying again and awakening and I really really liked it. It was delivered with humor, irony (where necessary) and without a trace of schmaltz...considering it was a totally feel good story ultimately. It was really hopeful and inspiring too and probably has the power to change the lives of a few people who read it. It's power is that there is a really good message disguised in a engrossing, realistic, funny story.
One of my favourite ever Audible books is May We Be Forgiven also by A M Holmes. That book is so good, I was really hesitant to buy this one, in case it just didn't measure up. In fact, though there are some trade-mark parallels, This Book Will Save Your Life is not that similar and so comparisons are not helpful or relevant - except that both books are really about a second or third (or more) chance at life, happiness and finding your own way.
This book is dry, dark in places, (not as dark as May We Be Forgiven), often with wry humour. A host of clearly drawn characters swarm in and out of the book and the narrator does a very good job of making them live and helps to guide you with different 'voices'. His female characters OK, and he is great at all the male characters. I liked his voice, it suits the material. No character is so incidental that they don't get a fully rounded characterisation - even the Doctor's receptionist. Holmes does this with an economy and deftness that is very clever.
The story is incredibly simple - and also very convoluted, with slap-stick moments of surreal incidents at times. The coincidence of 'things' that start happening to Richard, the main character, is almost magical so don't bother trying to think along the lines of 'well THAT just wouldn't happen!' as I did at first - just go with it. It's a modern, Los Angeles fairy story really but with donuts and film stars and a hundred extras!
I didn't love it in the way I loved May We Be Forgiven but I knew that would be hard to do. However, I did really enjoy it and I recommend it.
This is classic, I am having a mid life crisis kind of book and that is the way the bizarre tale tracks. A great story and god knows don't we all need a little of that sometimes.
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