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Download The Sentimentalists Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample The Sentimentalists Audiobook, by Johanna Skibsrud Click for printable size audiobook cover
2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 2.00 (1,518 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Johanna Skibsrud Narrator: Joey Collins, Greg Steinbruner, Celeste Ciulla Publisher: Recorded Books, LLC Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: November 2010 ISBN: 9781461804857
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Haunted by the vivid horrors of the Vietnam War, exhausted from years spent battling his memories, Napoleon Haskell leaves his North Dakota trailer and moves to Canada. He retreats to a small Ontario town where Henry, the father of his fallen Vietnam comrade, has a home on the shore of a man-made lake. Under the water is the wreckage of what was once the town, and the home where Henry was raised. When Napoleon’s daughter arrives, fleeing troubles of her own, she finds her father in the dark twilight of his life, and rapidly slipping into senility. With love and insatiable curiosity, she devotes herself to learning the truth about his life; and through the fog, Napoleon’s past begins to emerge.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “A slim debut novel graced by inventive language and a haunting atmosphere…The melancholy mood and restrained language of the story settles deep into a reader’s consciousness.”

    NPR

  • “As a poet, [Johanna Skibsrud] knows how to pare a story down to its essence and infuse every thread with meaning…The tale is so true and poignant that, as in the moment when the narrator flew over the water, readers, too, will want to stay there ‘as long as possible.’”

    Dallas Morning News

  • “Skibsrud’s assured prose and graceful wordplay elevate this delicately structured story of redemption and forgiveness, and her storytelling is so refined and subtle that the punch at the end, while fully anticipated, still has a leveling power.” 

    Publishers Weekly (starred review) 

  • “Skibsrud’s subtle, contemplative prose provides exquisite meditation on the ripple effects of violence upon generations, the untrustworthiness of memory, and the sorrowful impossibility of truly understanding one’s parents.” 

    Booklist

  • Winner of the Scotiabank Giller Prize in 2010

Listener Opinions

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Nellie | 2/10/2014

    " I was excited when this book came to me from my hold list at the library, given it having won the Giller and the interesting story behind the printing of copies. However, I have to say I struggled through it, and found it disjointed and hard to follow and overall rather depressing. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Janene Tamborello | 1/21/2014

    " Beautiful book. I didn't find the writing that obscure. SO many people complained about the structure being overly difficult but I didn't find it so. This is literature, not Jodi fucking Piccoult. Satisfying ending. Made me think and go back to re-read certain passages. Good stuff. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Mary Byrne | 1/21/2014

    " Fair insight into war, family "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Rebecca Saxon | 1/19/2014

    " A deceptively simple read that I was left wondering how much I really understood. I liked the clean, crisp poetic prose and the interweaving of the past and present. However, things seemed a bit too incomprehensible by the end. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Yolanda Ridge | 1/17/2014

    " I did not enjoy this book. I forced myself to finish it, because I figured there must be something I was missing given it's Giller Prize win, but even the end disappointed me. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Steveb beketa | 12/24/2013

    " overrated...climax was unclear and I was like "what's happening"more than once because the prose was too poetic. At times there were beautiful uses of imagery, but i wasn't sure what they were describing. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Mary Rutherford | 11/27/2013

    " I was disappointed in this book as it had won an award last year. I found the story hard to follow and not that interesting. Perhaps I missed something but it was not an enjoyable read for me. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Stephen | 11/27/2013

    " had good hopes for this book but felt the author could of done better with the overall plot and some of the dates seem confused but this is my opinion though "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Matthew McCarthy | 3/12/2013

    " For a novel without much narrative momentum, the characters are criminally underdeveloped. While it isn't without its poignantly rendered meditations, the novel, for my literary palate, is far too bloodless. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Tiziana | 6/30/2012

    " A daughter of a retired Vietnam War Vet tells about the struggles and horrors of his war memories. The story was good but much too depressing. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Marc Xuereb | 4/7/2012

    " just not exciting enough! the plot took way too long to unfold, and I tired of the author's endless ramblings on how past events did or did not get remembered and affected her life "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Jeffrey Thiessen | 3/24/2012

    " Exhausting read, since it has zero flow to the sentence structure. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Stephane | 2/15/2012

    " The strengths of this little novel may not outweigh its significant weaknesses. Rare are the writers that can capture the complex nature of existence like this author did. May not be worthy of the Giller, but certainly worth keeping an eye on. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Katherine O | 2/4/2012

    " Stunning this won the Giller. Don't waste your time. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 John | 10/11/2011

    " A beautiful story of growing up with parents you do not understand and about love. The war angle did not work for me. I really did not need the details about the incident at the end. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Debbie | 10/8/2011

    " A first novel about the two daughters of a Vietnam vet and their struggles to know, love, forgive, and accept him. A little overly mystical in some parts, but all in all, I enjoyed this book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Linda | 9/13/2011

    " A brief and powerful novel that initially pushes you away and makes you wonder if you'll continue to read and then morphs into a need to bear witness to a very disturbing slice of warfare which sadly repeats itself in every war.



    "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kosta | 9/5/2011

    " Playful and imaginative, especially for a confessional novel (ostensibly) about family. Well paced. Loved the submerged town "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Dany | 9/2/2011

    "
    In 3 words - too many commas. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Patricia | 8/24/2011

    " A book about the impact of the Vietnam War on a family. Felt vaguely unsatisfying after it was over, probably because of a lack of clear affective responses the family members demonstrated/portrayed both between and within themselves. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Carolyn | 8/17/2011

    " "The Sentimentalists","Johanna Skibsrud",
    I was disappointed in this book and in myself for not liking or appreciating this recent Giller prize winning novel more. A tedious read. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Clare | 8/16/2011

    " I am silly, I thought the narrator was a bloke for the first chapter. I thought it was okay, pretty easy to read, although it got a little disconnected at parts. I read it in about 2 days which says something I guess. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Felix | 8/15/2011

    " This book was heavily marketed in the Ontario province of Canada, & I simply don't understand why? I couldn't justify spending more time on it after the first 100 pages or so. The first sections were nice, but it totally lost a target afterwards. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Mary | 8/14/2011

    " This is clearly a first novel. It has lots more craft than soul. "

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About the Author
Author Johanna Skibsrud

Johanna Skibsrud is the author of several novels, including The Sentimentalists, winner of the Scotiabank Giller Prize, and two poetry collections. She lives in Tucson, Arizona.

About the Narrators

Joey Collins is a film and television actor who is known for his roles in All My Children, Kidnapped, and Law & Order. He is an accomplished audiobook narrator who has lent his voice to numerous titles, including Dead Lawyers Tell No Tales, East of Denver, and A Thousand Tomorrows.

Greg Steinbruner is an actor, audiobook narrator, playwright, and public-speaking consultant. He studied at NYU’s Tisch School and writes, directs, and produces his own plays in New York City. He has lent his vocal talents to such books as The Magic Thief, Larklight, Starcross, and the Origami Yoda series.

Celeste Ciulla is an accomplished actress and voice-over artist based in New York City. For her stage performances, she has received the 2010 Lunt-Fontanne Fellowship and the Callaway Award. As an audiobook narrator, she earned an AudioFile Earphones Award for her reading of Great House by Nicole Krauss.