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I was a little worried about picking this up. At 650 pages the audio is 20 hrs and 17 mins and even though I like to listen at a speed of 1.3 or 1.5, that still leaves quite a bit of book to tackle. What interested me was the main character’s hippy attitude. Cassandra is just like the synopsis says, a tree loving bohemian that is worried about her environment and what is happening to it.
The first part of this book totally had me. I loved hearing about Cassandra and her foibles. She is so happy about life that she even stages a protest, and brings enough signs for an army, and stays even though she is the only person that showed up. She’s strong and confident and everything girls should be reading about. Interestingly she really fights for what she believes in but this can get a little overwhelming when it sounds like she’s being preachy.
There are other characters that are also just as preachy for whatever they believe in. The main problem that I had with this was that all their voices started being too similar. With only one narrator and almost every character using the same vocabulary, it can get very different to differentiate between the characters.
Then there is Cassandra’s sister. My sister and I have had our issues but I would never treat my sister the way this lady treats hers. I just do not even understand why they hang out together when all she wants to do is stab Cassandra in the back! Her holier than thou attitude made it difficult to continue listening to the story.
The other characters that have holier than thou attitudes wind up speaking in such a way that deciphering who is saying what got difficult. This could be partially the narrator but I think the characters were great other than when they thought they were better than everyone else, so again I think it was the way the characters were developed. The narrator otherwise did a fantastic job but the story itself let me down. The audio, also, was superbly done without one hiccup in the recording.
Sadly, after about halfway through the story it started getting a bit tedious. I was tired of hearing about everyone wanting to screw everyone else over. For a 20 hour audio, it is a lot. Many times I found myself thinking of other things just so I could get away from the outgoing insistence that everyone in this book was better than everyone else. I went from being quite excited about the prospects of the aliens and the different lives that were going to intersect, to dreading it.
It fell short for me. Maybe due to the length but definitely because of the ongoing strife between the characters which did not fully add up. All in all, better than what I originally anticipated.
Audiobook provided for review by the author
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