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3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (1,060 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Ramona Ausubel Narrator: Laural Merlington Publisher: Dreamscape Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: February 2012 ISBN: 9781611206753
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In 1939, the families in a remote Jewish village in Romania feel the war close in on them. Their tribe has moved and escaped for thousands of years, across oceans, deserts, and mountains, but now, it seems, there is nowhere else to go. Danger is imminent in every direction, yet the territory of imagination and belief is limitless. At the suggestion of an eleven year old girl and a mysterious stranger who has washed up on the riverbank, the villagers decide to reinvent the world: deny any relationship with the known and start over from scratch. Destiny is unwritten. Time and history are forgotten. Jobs, husbands, a child, are reassigned. And for years, there is boundless hope.

But the real world continues to unfold alongside the imagined one, eventually overtaking it, and soon our narrator, the girl, grown into a young mother, must flee her village, move from one world to the next, to find her husband and save her children, and propel them toward a real and hopeful future.

A beguiling, imaginative, inspiring story about the bigness of being alive as an individual, as a member of a tribe, and as a participant in history, No One is Here Except All Of Us explores how we use storytelling to survive and shape our own truths.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Fantastical and ambitious…Infused with faith in the power of storytelling…Light and tenderness persevere—in a shining moon, in a candle still aglow, in a mother’s embrace of her child.”

    New York Times Book Review

  • “An absorbing and unpredictable novel that manages to encompass a wide geographic and emotional range…Ausubel’s original voice combines fresh, clear observation and Old testament grandeur.”

    New Yorker

  • “Romanian Jews in 1939 reinvent their own reality in this inspiring novel about the power of community and imagination.”

    O, The Oprah Magazine

  • “Ramona Ausubel’s debut, No One Is Here Except All of Us captures the magical group-think of a Romanian village that retreats into an imaginary reality at the outbreak of war.”

    Vogue

  • “If a book can be said to have a consciousness, the consciousness here is infinitely tender and soulful, magical and true. It’s the kind of God we wish for.”

    San Francisco Chronicle

  • Selected for the February 2012 Indie Next List
  • A 2012 San Francisco Chronicle Best Book for Fiction

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Ashley | 2/6/2014

    " Ever read a book and think "I know this is brand new but I swear I've read this before?"...I had one of those moments with this novel. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Echo | 2/5/2014

    " I hated this book. I read most of it, until I realized how much I was hating every second of it & finally put it down; there were only about 20 pages left. The whole premise of the book rested on a town of Jews in an isolated area who heard about the war & decided that a reasonable thing to do would be to pretend that they are remaking the world & they are the only ones that exist. That solves the problem of the war & they live in a way that allows them to cut off all contact with the rest of the world so it kind of works. This massive passivity is the most predominant theme in the book. No one actually participates in life, they just let things happen to them. You want to take my child because you think you should have one in the new world? Well, I guess. You didn't like that one & want a different one? Ok. You want to marry off the child you took from me who is not quite 12? I will say nothing. You want to take my child after my parents gave me away & damaged me for life? Ok, I guess that's all right. I mean, SERIOUSLY!!! I had to put it down because it gave me such anger about everything. PARTICIPATE, PEOPLE, PARTICIPATE!!!!! It was written beautifully, but without any character developement at all, because you can't develop someone who is so passive. They were all so simple as to be stupid, no one actually thinks this way. I just couldn't take it. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jitlapawn Okamura | 2/1/2014

    " Ausubel's debut novel is an imaginative, inspiring story about the bigness of being alive as an individual, as a member of a tribe and as a participant in history. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kathi Evans | 1/22/2014

    " Wonderful first novel - the story is original, and compelling. The writing is excellent. I loved this book, and I can't wait to read her next novel. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Mark Spence | 1/11/2014

    " I found this book to be beautiful in prose but pretentious in plot. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Nora Ray | 1/9/2014

    " Odd story - interesting but I am still not sure I liked it. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Jeani | 1/8/2014

    " sounded fascinating but in reality...eh. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Nancy S. | 12/30/2013

    " Great story, beautifully written. Unforgettable. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Riversue | 12/27/2013

    " I'm not a fan of WWII stories as a general rule and not usually too excited about fantastical realism but I devoured this book. It was wonderful, capitvating , fascinating and devasting as only WWII can be. Read this - you'll love it. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jean | 11/27/2013

    " An usual story - would enjoy hearing from others about this book. I liked it and I was constantly curious as to where the story was going. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Mer | 10/30/2013

    " Kind of slow and a bit strange. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Tine | 8/30/2013

    " Boek met woorden en beelden om je ermee in te zwachtelen. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Jamie | 7/1/2013

    " Gave up on it after 100+ pages as I just was not enjoying it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Carly | 5/1/2013

    " This book was beautiful and disturbing. But to be accurate, I suppose it had to be disturbing. I liked the first half of the book better than the second. If you read this, get the tissues ready. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kayne | 4/23/2013

    " I loved how the author wrote this as a mythical fantasy/historical fiction about a small village caught in WWII. Every word seemed like a bead on a carefully strung necklace. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 steph b. | 3/31/2013

    " I can't tell you how much I've thought about this book after I finished it. It haunts me (I suppose-- in a good way). Unique concept. Beautiful prose. I'll read anything Ramona writes from now on. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kyrie | 10/1/2012

    " This story was good, although I really had to wonder at some of the decisions made. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Krista | 8/30/2012

    " I loved how different this book is. The trail of storytelling and memory and sadness that it weaves together make it compelling. Such a different way to think about remembering. Vivid and rich in detail. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Alison | 7/3/2012

    " Liked her style got complicated. One of Those need to read with a book club books. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Suzan | 4/22/2012

    " Hummm... very interesting and haunting book about one way to deal with the holocaust. Not sure I could say I liked it but it really made me think and the characters and situation is still with me days later... "

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About the Author
Author Ramona Ausubel

Ramona Ausubel is a graduate of the MFA program at the University of California, Irvine. She is the author of No One Is Here Except All of Us. Her work has been published in the New Yorker, One Story, the Paris Review Daily, Best American Fantasy, and elsewhere, and has received special mentions in The Best American Short Stories and The Best American Nonrequired Reading. Ausubel has been long-listed for the Frank O’Connor Short Story Award, and a finalist for the New York Public Library Young Lions Fiction Award and the Pushcart Prize.

About the Narrator

Laural Merlington is an Earphones Award–winning audiobook narrator with over two hundred titles to her credit. An Audie Award nominee, she has also directed over one hundred audiobooks. She teaches college in her home state of Michigan.