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Download The Leftovers Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample The Leftovers, by Tom Perrotta, John Darnielle Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (13,510 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Tom Perrotta, John Darnielle Narrator: Dennis Boutsikaris Publisher: Macmillan Audio Format: Unabridged edition Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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What if—whoosh, right now, with no explanation—a number of us simply vanished?  Would some of us collapse? Would others of us go on, one foot in front of the other, as we did before the world turned upside down?That’s what the bewildered citizens of Mapleton, who lost many of their neighbors, friends and lovers in the event known as the Sudden Departure, have to figure out. Because nothing has been the same since it happened—not marriages, not friendships, not even the relationships between parents and children. 

Kevin Garvey, Mapleton’s new mayor, wants to speed up the healing process, to bring a sense of renewed hope and purpose to his traumatized community. Kevin’s own family has fallen apart in the wake of the disaster: his wife, Laurie, has left to join the Guilty Remnant, a homegrown cult whose members take a vow of silence; his son, Tom, is gone, too, dropping out of college to follow a sketchy prophet named Holy Wayne.  Only Kevin’s teenaged daughter, Jill, remains, and she’s definitely not the sweet “A” student she used to be.  Kevin wants to help her, but he’s distracted by his growing relationship with Nora Durst, a woman who lost her entire family on October 14th and is still reeling from the tragedy, even as she struggles to move beyond it and make a new start.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “[Perrotta’s] most ambitious book to date…The premise is as simple as it is startling (certainly for the characters involved). The novel is filled with those who have changed their lives radically or discovered something crucial about themselves, as radical upheaval generates a variety of coping mechanisms. Though the tone is more comic than tragic, it is mainly empathic, never drawing a distinction between ‘good’ and ‘bad’ characters, but recognizing all as merely human—ordinary people dealing with an extraordinary situation.”

    Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

  • “Ever since Little Children, Tom Perrotta has been a master chronicler of suburban ennui, but he takes things to a new level with his wry, insightful, unputdownable novel The Leftovers…Profoundly entertaining…The Leftovers brims with joy, hilarity, tenderness, and hope.”

    Marie Claire

  • The Leftovers is sort of an Our Town for End Times. Tom Perrotta, our Balzac of the burbs, has come up with a wild premise for his engaging, entertaining new novel. Suddenly, a huge number of people vanish from this earth. The only explanation is that The Rapture has occurred…He narrows his affectionate and gently satiric focus to the middle-American village of Mapleton and shows us a bunch of folks trying to get on with their lives…The novel intertwines these stories at a graceful pace in prose so affable that the pages keep turning without hesitation. With Perrotta at the controls, you buy the set-up and sit back as he takes off.”

    Chicago Sun-Times

  • “In his provocative new novel Tom Perrotta dives straight into our unease…It’s a gentle, Perrotta-esque go at sci-fi, without any mangled bodies or bombed-out buildings; it’s a realistic novel built on a supernatural foundation.”

    Boston Globe

  • “Perrotta combines absurd circumstance and authentic characters to wondrous effect, turning his story into a vivid exploration of what we believe, what matters most, and how, if untethered, we move on…Perrotta treats his characters with sympathy and invites the reader to do the same.”

    Seattle Times

  • “[Perrotta’s] most mature, absorbing novel, one that confirms his development from a funnyman to a daring chronicler of our most profound anxieties and human desires…Leavened with humor and tinged with creepiness, this insightful novel draws us into some very dark corners of the human psyche.”

    Washington Post

  • “The Leftovers is, simply put, the best Twilight Zone episode you never saw.”

    Stephen King, New York Times Book Review

  • A New York Times Bestseller
  • A 2011 Washington Post Notable Book for Fiction
  • A 2011 Kirkus Reviews Top 25 Book for Fiction
  • A 2011 Top 10 NPR Best Book for Fiction
  • Selected for the September 2011 Indie Next List
  • A 2011 New York Times Book Review Notable Book

Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Melanie | 2/12/2014

    " A novel about those who are left behind after "the rapture" Kevin and his wife Laurie and their children Jill and Tom are the lucky ones when the family is left intact. But thier lives still fall apart in the months after. Nora loses her husband and two children. Now left alone she has to find a way to recover. And there is the reverend who is so angry that he wasn't taken in "the rapture" that he digs up secrets on everyone who was taken so he can prove they weren't Godly, so it really wasn't "the rapture" but something else. Lots of wonderful topics for book groups to discuss. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Kristin Lozon | 2/5/2014

    " Well written with surprising turns. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Nikki Wood | 1/30/2014

    " Enjoyed this. Thanks Renee, for recommending! A bit odd, but also a nice way to get one thinking. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Dawn | 1/21/2014

    " I would give this 3 1/2 stars. This is the second Tom Perrotta book I've read (also The Abstinence Teacher), and they both seemed to kind of just end. The characters are frustratingly self-destructive, but also sympathetic. This was a very interesting concept and, sadly, Perrotta is probably right on about how the world would react to such an event. [SPOILER!] I probably would have gone to four stars if he'd said how and why the people disappeared! I understand that wasn't the point of the story, but I still wanted to know. "

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