Stoney Nix can play anything, from Beethoven to the Blues, on his old rattletrap piano. It's just a gift, and a good one. Music is his ticket out of Pinewood, Alabama, his ironic, dying hometown, where they reenact the Civil War but cancel marching band because it's too small.
Then Sadie Green, the hilarious and beautiful new girl (and Stoney's major crush), convinces him to fight in the fake Civil War battle. What happens there will haunt Stoney forever - and only through voices of the past, struggle, friendship, and his music, will Stoney find himself.
A young adult-paranormal-gothic-comedy-romance, The Battle Hymn Blues is a story filled with ghosts and pranks, music and mystery. It's a love song to the blues we all share, how the past and the future and happiness have the strangest ways of finding you.
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An affecting and surprising smalltown story
I have not listened to many audiobooks, but the format suits this novel very well.
It was read well, with just a few instances where it seemed emphasis was placed on the wrong word, or pauses in the wrong place. Over all, well done though; the reader gives the characters distinctive voices, and a slight southern accent, but never to the point that it's annoying.
I normally tend to read genre fiction, including horror, sci-fi and fantasy, so this wasn't really in my wheelhouse. I was pleasantly surpised though... this novel manages to be funny, touching, and surprising, while saying a lot about friendship, family, and growing up.
- Curtis Hempler