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on January 20th 2015
Narrator: Tim Gerard Reynolds
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Source: Simon & Schuster Audio
From the award-winning novelist David Whitehouse, hailed by The New York Times as “a writer to watch,” a tragicomic adventure about a troubled adolescent boy who escapes his small town in a stolen library-on-wheels.
“An archivist of his mother,” Bobby Nusku spends his nights meticulously cataloging her hair, clothing, and other traces of the life she left behind. By day, Bobby and his best friend Sunny hatch a plan to transform Sunny, limb-by-limb, into a cyborg who could keep Bobby safe from schoolyard torment and from Bobby’s abusive father and his bleach-blonde girlfriend. When Sunny is injured in a freak accident, Bobby is forced to face the world alone.
Out in the neighborhood, Bobby encounters Rosa, a peculiar girl whose disability invites the scorn of bullies. When Bobby takes Rosa home, he meets her mother, Val, a lonely divorcee, whose job is cleaning a mobile library. Bobby and Val come to fill the emotional void in each other’s lives, but their bond also draws unwanted attention. After Val loses her job and Bobby is beaten by his father, they abscond in the sixteen-wheel bookmobile. On the road they are joined by Joe, a mysterious but kindhearted ex-soldier. This “puzzle of people” will travel across England, a picaresque adventure that comes to rival those in the classic books that fill their library-on-wheels.
At once tender, provocative and darkly funny, Mobile Library is a fable about the intrinsic human desire to be loved and understood—and about one boy’s realization that the kinds of adventures found in books can happen in real life. It is the ingenious second novel by a writer whose prose has been hailed as “outlandishly clever” (The New York Times) and “deceptively effortless” (TheBoston Globe).
We received this book/audiobook for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect our opinion of the book or the content of our review.
AUDIOBOOK REVIEW: 4 STARS
This was an amazing story about a Boy, a Princess, a Queen and a Caveman. The Boy, Bobby, was the center of the story. It all started because of him. He loved his mother so much and sadly he wasn’t loved by his father. After he is left completely alone, his mother is gone and his best friend, Sunny is gone to live in another city, he finds a new friend, The Princess, Rosa. She was different in every way. She is smart, curious and very caring. But something bad happened to Rosa, so Bobby decided to protect her, just like Sunny had always protected him. Rosa’s mother, Val, The Queen took them both to the Mobile Library where she worked at and they had so much fun reading those amazing books and also learning about life from those stories and the characters within those books.
Sadly, things weren’t easy for Bobby with his father. In fact, things were so awful, Val decided to protect Bobby, just like he had protected her daughter and run away with them both and the Mobile Library. What looked like an attempt to run away from the danger Bobby was in, turned out to be a journey to find the happiness they needed. To find the love they needed. And most of all, to find what family really meant. On this journey they met Joe, The Caveman, which was so cool! He helped them, not only to escape, but also he became the fourth member of this amazing family.
I loved Rosa, her innocence and sincerity was always a balm for what was happening during their trip. I loved Val, she was a loving mother and friend, who always protected them no matter what. She even protected and believed in Joe when he needed it the most. And my favorite was Bobby. He was a smart boy, who wanted so badly to have his mother back, to have a better father, to have a family to love. I loved that he found them all: a mother, a father, a sister and their love.
There was a heartbreaking moment almost at the end of the book that brought me tears for Bobby. I wanted to hold him so badly and never let him go! Thank God that Val was there to do it for me.
Why not to give 5 stars to an amazing story? Because the writing style was a bit confusing. It changed perspectives from one paragraph to the other. It was a good thing to know what everyone was feeling and thinking, but I like to know where I’m standing in one story, and it was a little hard for me in this book. Especially with the audiobook because the pauses were so brief that I didn’t catch when the POV was changing. And to the addition of the POV for the four main characters of the book, there were also POV’s for the detective, the officers, Joe’s father, some random man in a pub, and on and on and on. It was confusing.
The narration of Tim Gerard Reynolds was great. His British accent was amazing and his Scottish accent was so funny for me, despite the fact I couldn’t understand 25% of what he was saying, but I enjoyed it anyway. He sounded funny. I loved his voices for all the characters, especially Rosa’s. He made me remember when I listened to Harry Potter’s audiobook a long time ago
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