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Where does Back of Beyond rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?
In the top 10%!
Who was your favorite character and why?
It might just be because I grew up in Montana, spent many summers in Yellowstone National Park and am a recovering drunk (23 years sober), but I loved the Hoyt character. Every part of his struggle rang true to me. I grew up with so many guys like him and I still know a bunch of families where it is not uncommon to have Cops & Criminals in the same clan. The references to sending guys to Deer Lodge (where the MT State Prison used to be) really hits home. I worked a couple of summers on a small ranch that bordered the Deer Lodge Prison ranch and spent many an hour riding those fences that separated the free from the chained. Hoyt's attempts to "DO RIGHT BY HIS BOY" really touches a nerve-many of my old pals used to joke that a strong marriage was the one that survived till the ten year high school reunion. Hoyt's demons are real to me and resonate with the struggles of many I know. I cannot read any Montana story of a lost soul, like Hoyt, struggling to find himself-without thinking of "A River Runs Through It" and Mr. Box is very close to the mastery of that gut-busting & heart-rending tale. Even his description of Townsend and Canyon Ferry (where my dad & little Sister share a cabin) struck true!
Mr. Box has obviously actually traversed much the Big Sky Country and has captured, with his keen ear, a good portion of the unique and quirky dialogue of the native locals!
I was especially impressed with the reverent treatment of the AA Sponsor's relationship to the newly sober->Mr. Box had that (to my mind & experience) EXACTLY RIGHT and since that is the fulcrum that catapults the plot forward, (Hoyt could not go off on this quest without the wrong done to his sponsor) and lends the entire tale a sense of both believability and justice!
My only regret was that I wasn't listening to this story as I drove from Missoula to the Three Forks and the Gateway...
What about Holter Graham’s performance did you like?
The oral interpretation of the suffering and the struggles of Hoyt life and action was very moving and the tone, pacing and gruffness of the character really shone though!
Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?
YES...one of the great things about driving across Montana is that it is at least 10 hours North to South and at least 14 hours East to West (obeying the posted limits). so the ideal way to hear this book would be to start at Logan Pass on the Going to the Sun Highway (in Glacier) and drive down to Yellowstone! Which I intend to do with my wife when we retire!
Any additional comments?
The plot in the story is great! It is a mystery within a mystery and has a both a great hook and a great twist! But again I think the Hoyt character makes this story & I hope Mr. Box brings him back again & again!
30 of 30 people found this review helpful
Right from the start I want to state - I am a C.J. Box fan. That said, I am an even bigger fan after reading this book. The lead hero is built from some very human parts, and rises from his own ashes in a way that makes you feel good about the world. This is Box's 3rd stand alone book and I think it is as good or better than the others. Box can write, he develops interesting characters and puts them together in great scenery with a perfect amount of suspense and tension. I really liked this book and would recommend it highly
20 of 20 people found this review helpful
I already liked C J Box a lot. After listening to Back of Beyond, he's become one of my favourite crime writers. Very gripping plot, highly believable characters. But the best part was the wilderness setting, and the interaction between it and the humans and animals in the story. I felt I was there. Terrific! The narrator was great too.