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Extended Audio Sample Wild Abandon: A Novel Audiobook, by Joe Dunthorne Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (371 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Joe Dunthorne Narrator: Tom Lawrence Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: January 2012 ISBN: 9780307971241
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At a once vibrant communal-living property in the British countryside, back-to-basics fervor has given way to a vague discontent. A place that once buzzed with activity, from the polytunnels to the pottery shed, now functions with a skeleton crew. Founder Don Riley surveys his domain with the grim focus of someone who knows what’s best for everyone—and isn’t afraid to let them know. Especially when those people are related to him.

Don’s wife, Freya, can’t quite decide whether not liking someone anymore is enough reason to end a twenty-year marriage. So she decamps to a mud yurt in the woods to mull it over. Their seventeen-year-old daughter, Kate, enrolls in school for the first time in her life: the exotic new world of fellow teenagers and surprisingly tasty cafeteria food beckons, and she is quickly lured into the arms of a “meathead” classmate. In his sister’s absence, eleven-year-old Albert falls under the spell of an outlandish new visitor to the community who fills his head with strange notions of the impending end of the world.

Faced with the task of rescuing his son from apocalyptic fantasies, his daughter from the clutches of suburbia, and his wife from her increasingly apparent desire to leave him, Don convinces himself that the only way to save the world he’s created is . . . to throw the biggest party of his life. Will anyone show up?

From the acclaimed young author of Submarine, Wild Abandon is a strange and wonderful look at love—familial and romantic, returned and rebuffed—and the people and places we choose to call home. Download and start listening now!

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Listener Opinions

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Maura | 2/8/2014

    " All the blurbs refer this book being hilarious, but it didn't tickle my funny bone at all. The description of the plot sounds funny, but the actual story just was a little too off for me. The characters seemed kind of stereotypical to me - the aging hippie and his wife who started a commune many years ago but are now growing apart, the wealthy stoner who suports them, the kids who are eager to try mainstream life, etc. Kate's storyline seemed the most promising, but somehow it fizzled. In the beginning she seems like a very focused and together sort of girl, but her actions when living with her boyfriend's family don't fit her character. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Paresh Pandya | 2/7/2014

    " Interesting book. I like the writing style, but the plot lost me 3/4 of the way through. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Laura Marks | 2/4/2014

    " It started out ok and had an original premise, but I lost interest and only finished it to see if it redeemed itself in the end. It didn't. No likable charachters . . . I didn't care what happened to any of them. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Cathy | 1/28/2014

    " Wild Abandon explores the edges of conventional living arrangements. The characters choose their setting and then choose to change (they take themselves VERY seriously). Good fun to watch from the sidelines. Apocalyptic visions of the eleven year-old tugs you to the climactic ending. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Alan Fricker | 1/18/2014

    " olympic size swimming pool at uea? not built at time of novel. otherwise great fun. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 April | 1/17/2014

    " Good story about family relationships in a commune. Quite humorous, though also poignant at times. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Laurel Beth | 1/16/2014

    " oh, but it started so strong. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Megan O'keefe | 1/15/2014

    " It took me a lot longer to read this book than it normally wood. For me, it was kind of slow and I kept reading waiting for something more to happen, but it never did. Disappointed and a little confused by the ending. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lindsay | 12/12/2013

    " The tale of a commune in Wales in 2012, long past its heyday, and the family at its center that is starting to unravel. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Allison Anderson | 12/11/2013

    " His first book,Submarine, was better in conveying the angst of teenagers and the awkwardness of families, but this is awfully, terribly vivid in the necessary forgiveness of parents... and children. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Lou | 8/3/2013

    " Eccentricity and charmingness of characters didn't live up to Submarine, unfortunately. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Erinn | 7/2/2013

    " I love a good book about a commune/cult but this one just didn't do it for me. There were some characters I really cared for and I think others were well-written it just all came off a bit false. Maybe closer to a 2.5 star book than a 2, but I don't really feel inclined to pick up his other book "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Katie Bliss | 5/23/2013

    " Ehhhh. I didn't know where this book was going, and I don't think it did either. Few of the characters were likable or understandable. Things didn't change much or get better, or at least the things you wish would, didn't. Not that fantastic. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Jess | 5/4/2013

    " The more I read, the more confused I became. This is one of those books that I can't decide if I liked it or not. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Sarah Harkness | 4/16/2013

    " I was keen to read another UEA graduate book, and I enjoyed this, particularly the characters of Albert and his sister..I thought the build up to the climax was good, but wasn't quite sure about the ending - which is why 3 stars not 4....witty and fast-moving "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Twan | 7/10/2012

    " Crusty behaviour. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ashley Nickerson | 7/7/2012

    " Hilarious - a real treat! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jo | 2/29/2012

    " Quirky, sometimes uncomfortable crisis tale "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Linda | 2/9/2012

    " Disappointing read, nowhere near as funny as i thought it was going to be. None of the characters were particularly interesting and i just got bored. Afraid i won't be rushing to read Submarine! "

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