Monday, June 25, 2012

Audio Review: Then Came You by Jennifer Weiner

Then Came You by Jennifer Weiner
Genre: Fiction
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Format: Unabridged Audio
Challenge: 2012 Audio Book Challenge
Purchase: IndieBound

I originally received the book format of this to read and review. I don't know what made me switch to the audio version but I'm glad I did. I gave the book copy to my mom and she loved it. And I absolutely enjoyed the audio format.

I have far exceeded my audio book goal for this year, having only signed up to listen to 6 for the 2012 Audio Book Challenge. I am now up to 10 for the year. The selections I've been choosing are from many different genres, from memoir to mystery. This selection was my first venture into honest to goodness women's fiction.

I've read one other Jennifer Weiner book a few years back and really enjoyed it. I haven't read a TON of women's fiction and unfortunately, the marketing of the covers tends to look the same from book to book. Women on a beach, walking down a road, all in pastels and light colors, etc etc. I tend to glaze over books because they don't stand out. Luckily, I looked passed that when I chose Jennifer's books.

Her stories are real and complicated, filled with characters that you feel like you know. Though in the two books I have experienced, the endings were summed up quite nicely, it doesn't leave a corny feel. 

Here is a description of Then Came You from Goodreads:

The lives of four very different women intertwine in unexpected ways in this new novel by bestselling author Jennifer Weiner (In Her Shoes; Best Friends Forever). Each woman has a problem: Princeton senior Jules Wildgren needs money to help her dad cure his addiction; Pennsylvania housewife Annie Barrow is gasping to stay financially afloat; India Bishop yearns to have a child, an urge that her stepdaughter Bettina can only regard with deeply skepticism until she finds herself in a most unexpected situation. Interlocking dramas designed to ensnare; bound to be a bestseller.

The audio has four distinct narrators, for each woman. They made the characters pop. Bettina was a brat (though justified most of the time) and the narrators voice was perfect. Annie was warm, earthy, friendly, sweet and the narrator was right on. Jules was serious, frank and smart. India was exotic, savvy and all I could think of was Catherine Zeta Jones. Though the narrator was NOT her, she did an awesome job.

At first, I was a tad impatient how they were all going to collide but towards the middle, it picked up. I then appreciated the back story build in the beginning. Very interesting look at the definitions of family and having a child. Each character made you feel so many things. At times I hated Bettina's privileged snottiness, or India's self centeredness. And times I loved how frank Jules was or how sweet and naive Annie was.

It was such a lovely listen overall. It was like having friends in my car telling me their story. It was so simple yet intricate all at the same time. For branching out into women's fiction, I was pleased with this choice. 

Rating: Recommend
This is a very good pick for book clubs. With the many different voices and sides to the story, you will find plenty to talk about. The definition of a family. What makes a mother. Loyalty. Forgiveness. I recommend for readers of Jodi Picoult and Kristin Hannah. 

Author's Website:
Jennifer Weiner

Happy Reading and as always, thanks for stopping by!

red headed book child


Jill Buck said...

I read a bunch of hers a while back and then for some reason haven't read any since, I don't know why. This sounds like a good one.

Teresa said...

Woo Hoo! Congratulations on exceeding your goal. I might try and pick this one up on audio as well based on your recommendation.

Renee Gimelli said...

Audio books seem to depend on carefully portrayed voice nuances. This may be why I have usually had better luck reading non-fiction with audio only. Dialogue needs to be set apart by characteristics of each voice. I am currently listening to Michael Cunningham's By Nightfall, which is read by Hugh Dancy who is doing a great job with the voices.

Gina said...

Everybody is going the audio root here recently. Glad you enjoy them each their own format, ^_^ Always wondered about this author's works as the covers are so me apparently (as I continue to read your review). Sounds like this one was a winner! Might check out one day...but even if I don't, enjoyed the share.

Tales of Whimsy said...

Sounds reallly good. I should give this audio a go too.

Miss Remmers said...

I've never read anything by her but I hear she's fantastic! Will definitely look into this audiobook!