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Extended Audio Sample Aquarium, by David Vann Click for printable size audiobook cover
0 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 5 0.00 (0 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: David Vann Narrator: Julia Whelan Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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David Vann’s dazzling debut Legend of a Suicide was reviewed in over a 150 major global publications, won eleven prizes worldwide, was on forty “best books of the year” lists, and established its author as a literary master. Since then, Vann has delivered an exceptional body of work, receiving, among others, best foreign novel in France and Spain, a California Book Award, and the mid-career St. Francis College Literary Prize. Aquarium, his implosive new book, will take Vann to a wider audience than ever before.

Twelve-year-old Caitlin lives alone with her mother—a docker at the local container port—in subsidized housing next to an airport in Seattle. Each day, while she waits to be picked up after school, Caitlin visits the local aquarium to study the fish. Gazing at the creatures within the watery depths, Caitlin accesses a shimmering universe beyond her own. When she befriends an old man at the tanks one day, who seems as enamored of the fish as she, Caitlin cracks open a dark family secret and propels her once-blissful relationship with her mother toward a precipice of terrifying consequence.

In crystalline, chiseled, yet graceful prose, Aquarium takes us into the heart of a brave young girl whose longing for love and capacity for forgiveness transforms the damaged people around her. Relentless and heartbreaking, primal and redemptive, Aquarium is a transporting story from one of the best American writers of our time.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Gripping, painful, but ultimately hopeful, Aquarium is a coming-of-age story that explores the limits of love and forgiveness. Vann submerges you so deeply in Caitlin’s world, you’ll be gasping for breath when you finally surface. Grade: A.”

    Entertainment Weekly

  • “Vann’s prose is as pure as a gulp of water from an Alaskan stream.”

    Financial Times (London)

  • “David Vann’s…language hits the reader like shrapnel in a metalworker’s studio—fragmented and sharp-fitting for novels so packed with shattering turns.”

    Seattle Times

  • “Like Melville, Faulkner, and McCarthy, Vann is already one of the greats of American literature.”

    ABC (Madrid)

  • “An elegant and fierce novel about love, betrayal, the limits of forgiveness…Aquarium is beautifully and patiently written, and will make you ache with remembrance and empathy.”

    Amazon.com

  • “Since electrifying the literary world five years ago with his debut novel, Legend of a Suicide, Vann has racked up an astonishing number of international awards. This lovely, wrenching novel should add to that list.”

    Library Journal (starred review)

  • “By pulling no punches in this explicit exploration of family, forgiveness, duty, acceptance, parent-child relationships, and what constitutes abuse, Vann has outdone himself.”

    Booklist (starred review)

  • “A kind of modern fairy tale…Unlike Vann’s other novels, which exist in a closed system of violence and despair, this story offers redemption…Vann’s novels are striking, uncompromising portraits of American life; here is another exceptional example.”

    Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

  • “Elegantly written, emotionally intense…Vann crafts a moving exploration of the boundaries we draw around ourselves to stay safe and unchanged.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “Julia Whelan’s straightforward narration of Vann’s dramatic story is terrifying and powerful…Be warned: This novel IS violent. And stunning. There’s no rush to the story or to Whelan’s narration. Her characters are persuasive and robust. Whelan sounds perfect as a twelve-year-old girl—curious, cautious at times, and bold at others. As Whelan bravely faces the text, listeners may flinch, but she remains solid and smooth.”

    AudioFile

  • A New York Times Editor’s Choice
  • One of Kirkus Reviews’ Best Books of 2015
  • An Amazon Best Book of the Month for March 2015
  • An Indie Next List Selection for March 2015
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About the Author
Author David Vann

David Vann is an internationally bestselling author whose work has been translated into twenty languages. He is the winner of more than a dozen prizes, including the Grace Paley Prize, a California Book Award, the AWP Nonfiction Award, and France’s L’Express Readers’ Prize. His books include Legend of a Suicide, Caribou Island, A Mile Down, and Last Day on Earth. A former Guggenheim, Stegner, and National Endowment for the Arts fellow, Vann is a professor at the University of of Warwick in England. He has written for the Atlantic, Esquire, Outside, McSweeney’s, the Sunday Times, the Observer, and many other publications and has appeared in documentaries for the BBC, Nova, National Geographic, and CNN.