Louis Holland arrives in Boston in a spring of ecological upheaval (a rash of earthquakes on the North Shore) and odd luck: the first one kills his grandmother. Louis tries to maintain his independence, but falls in love with a Harvard seismologist whose discoveries about the earthquakes' cause complicate everything.
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Compelling Story, Ridiculous Narrator
This one was a little slow starting for me because all the characters are jerks, but once the earthquakes started, I was hooked.
I particularly liked the character of Rene, who humanizes Louis and makes me like him more.
The audiobook narrator, however, I did not enjoy. First of all, apparently he thinks the best way to convey a female voice is to become grating, nasal, and lispy. Some of the female characters sounded like Beavis and Butthead. Seriously. Bad.What's more, the narrator constantly mispronounces things, from words like "hegemony" to place names. I can almost forgive the place names, as we here in Massachusetts do pronounce things in unlikely ways, but the actual words, those are less forgivable. But back to the place names, why would the publisher hire someone to read a book about metro Boston who clearly has no idea about greater Boston? Among the place names mispronounced here: Worcester, Waltham, Peabody, and Copley Square. How hard is it to pronounce Copley Square? What I'm saying is, this narrator did not do his homework.
I'm lukewarm on this one. It's a good story, but I often had to cringe and grit my teeth through the narration.
Clearly Franzen, but with plot
- Michael A. Cudmore