From Garth Stein, the New York Times best-selling author of The Art of Racing in the Rain, Audible presents Raven Stole the Moon—in audio for the first time, and beautifully narrated by Jennifer Van Dyck.
Jenna Rosen returns to the place in Alaska where her young son, Bobby, disappeared without a trace two years before. Jenna is determined to lay to rest the aching mystery of his death. But ancient legends may have had a hand in Bobby’s fate, forcing Jenna to sift through her own Native American ancestry to uncover the truth.
Wrangell, Alaska, offers Jenna little comfort beyond the constant and tender attention of Eddie, a local fisherman. When ancient legends begin to suggest a frightening new possibility about Bobby’s fate, Jenna digs deeper into the menacing forces at work in the wilderness. A Tlingit shaman named Dr. David Livingstone warns Jenna not to disturb the legendary kushtaka—soul stealing predators that stalk a netherworld between land and sea, the living and the dead. But Jenna is desperate for answers, and she appeals to both Livingstone and Eddie to help her sort fact from myth, and face the unthinkable possibilities head-on.
Jenna and her husband Robert were living the American dream in Seattle, complete with their 5-year-old son, Bobby, a fancy BMW, and Robert’s money-making job as a real estate developer. Then Bobby tragically drowned on a trip to Alaska. Two years later, on the anniversary of his death, Jenna impulsively leaves Robert and their deteriorated marriage at a party and drives north. She boards a ferry to Alaska, drawn to her mother’s hometown, close to where Bobby died. Concurrently, a new resort is slated to be built near the bay where Bobby drowned. A shaman is hired to rid the area of bad spirits from the Tlingit (sounds like “Clinket”) Native American tribe that once lived there. Not surprisingly the two stories intertwine, as Jenna, who herself is a quarter Tlingit, delves deeper into the tribe’s culture, and begins to believe that their spirits might hold the answers she’s been searching for in her son’s death.
Jennifer Van Dyck’s formal, yet breathy enunciation of words adds an ethereal quality to her story-telling it works perfectly for the spiritual nature of this novel. Even when the novel relies on the rare cliché, Van Dyck is able to make it sound fresh and interesting. She’s at her best when enacting Jenna’s character, but is able to put on a gruffer voice for male characters that are suitably believable. Her pauses between the alternating story lines are effective and keep the two from getting confused, otherwise the steady pace of her speech has a soothing nature.
A novel that eloquently juxtaposes American greed with Native American spirituality, Raven Stole the Moon is ultimately about getting through grief, searching for closure, and tapping into the unknowns that are the center of every human experience. Colleen Oakley
"Deeply moving, superbly crafted and highly unconventional." (Washington Times)
“Jennifer Van Dyck offers an expert rendition of this story…Van Dyck's flawless performance gets out of the way of the story, letting Stein’s words carry the message.” (AudioFile)
"Unpredictable and absorbing." (Publishers Weekly)
"A treat." (The Denver Post)
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I love Garth Stein!
I don't know. Jennifer's narration of this was annoying. Stac·ca·to would be the best way of describing her style.
- F. Stevens