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Where does Into This River I Drown rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?
I don't often write book reviews.
I was really hesitant about buying this book as it had no reviews and only a 2 star rating.
Take a chance on this book!
I have a very low tolerance for awkward, amateurish, or self indulgent writing. I couldn't find a single hitch in this imaginative, well realized, and expertly executed story.
Where "In This River I Drown" really shines, though, is the narration. It took only about a minute for the narrater to wrap the story around my heart and squeeze. His voice, off-puttingly childish only for a moment, somehow immersed me in the bittersweet joy of memories, the warmth of families, friends, and loves. I felt like my heart was crushed a few times through the story, felt so much relief I gasped in others, and in some points felt more rage than I've felt toward any story villains I can remember.
This story, and this voice will become a part of you experience, and these characters will become a part of your psyche, and your heart.
Who was your favorite character and why?
Kal, without a doubt. His bright love for the world and such seemingly small things was so endearing, and paradoxically he was terrifying in his strength. Beautiful! Nina is a close second, though she seemed a bit like a Stephen King style gimmick (one I've always been fond of, though).
What about Matt Baca’s performance did you like?
Oh my gosh! So many things I could say. I have no idea how he did it, but the earnestness in his voice somehow melted me from the start. The rawness with which he recounts joyful memories just wrenches your heart right in two!
Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?
Both, but more cry. It's not a sad book. Rather the opposite. It's a book full of such joy and warmth and tenderness that it makes you ache.
15 of 15 people found this review helpful
I could go on for days about this book. Really, I was hesitant to start with. I loved "Bear, Otter and the Kid", but was completely on the fence about the follow up - it lacked something; to flippant I think. So when this book landed, I had my doubts.
Boy, was I wrong. It's simply wonderful! It's sad and funny, hopeful and sometimes dark, real and imagined all in equal measure and quality. It's hard to image that a book about a boy and guardian angel could be anything but trite, but TL Klune has an expert touch that keeps you engaged all the while.
I cried and laughed, and it the end, love love love this book. There's a movie of this book in my head and I think it would be awesome.
And I found it - the easter egg from "Bear, Otter and the Kid". It made me smile.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful
Long and meandering story revolving primarily around Benji Green, who several years after the death of his father (was it an accident or something more sinister!) feels so alone and depressed that he prays for help because he feels that he is struggling and can't continue. His prayers are answered when Cal, who is not perfect, but is by far and away the most likeable character in the book, literally drops from the skies, and a love story begins! I wish that the story had been centred around him as I probably would have liked the book more, though there are (as is usual with this author) several interesting characters, some I loved and others I loathed!
For me, Benji himself is not always the most likeable character and I kept wishing he would 'grow a pair' as I found him to be selfish and spineless! There is a lot of unnecessary repetition concerning Benji's dream about his father. Initially, I found his dreams added to the story, but by three quarters of the way through the book this really began to irritate me and I struggled to stay with the story, though I have to say that I'm pleased I did for the ending!
Usually I'm a big fan of TJ Klune, having read or listened to several of his wonderful books, but I have to say that had this been the first one I'm not sure I would have listened or read to any of his other books, as in my opinion this one falls short!
What kept me sticking with this story was the excellent narration, as in the hands of a less accomplished narrator I would have given up!
If you haven't listened to any of TJ Klune's books previously then I suggest you start with 'Tell Me It's Real' or 'Bear, Otter and The Kid', but avoid this one!
beautifully written story that covers grief loss and betrayal, I cried many tears, this story made me want to be a better person