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Extended Audio Sample Wish You Well, by David Baldacci Click for printable size audiobook cover
4.16 out of 54.16 out of 54.16 out of 54.16 out of 54.16 out of 5 4.16 (0 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: David Baldacci Narrator: Norma Lana Publisher: Hachette Book Group Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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It is 1940 in New York City when a tragedy sends precocious twelve-year-old Louisa Mae Cardinal and her little brother, Oz, to live with their invalid mother on their great-grandmother’s farm in the rugged mountains of Southwest Virginia. Suddenly Lou finds herself coming of age in a new landscape, making her first true friend, and experiencing adventures tragic, comic, and audacious. But the forces of greed and justice are about to clash over her new home, and as their struggle is played out in a crowded Virginia courtroom, it will determine the future of two children, an entire town, and the mountains they love.

The story is told with both heartbreaking elegance and large doses of touching humor as the lives of Lou and Oz are changed forever. The portraits of the land and its people are described with an extraordinary eye for detail, and the story flows through swells of prejudice, innocence, faith, and the question of whether one can ever really wish another well. The climactic courtroom battle is as unpredictable as it is relentless.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Baldacci triumphs with his best novel yet, an utterly captivating drama…What the novel offers above all is bone-deep emotional truth…This novel has a huge heart—and millions of readers are going to love it.”

    Publishers Weekly (starred review)

  • “Readers will keep turning the pages of this delightful tale.

    Orlando Sentinel

  • “Knot-tight, driven, and in the end, an uplifting gospel that speaks to the strength of family bonds, Wish You Well adds a new dimension to Baldacci the writer and to the code of Appalachia-inspired artistry…The ending is pure Baldacci, uncertain until the last page.”

    Richmond Times-Dispatch

  • “An exciting and engrossing story…A fine rewarding book.”

    Mansfield (OH) News Journal

  • “Wish You Well, set in [Baldacci’s] native Virginia, is a tale of hope and wonder…This shift from contentious urbanites to homespun hill families may come as a surprise to some of Baldacci’s fans—but they can rest assured: the author’s sense of pacing and exuberant prose have made the leap as well…Baldacci switches deftly between lovingly detailed character description and patient development of the novel’s central plot.”

    Amazon.com, editorial review

  • “[An] affecting novel whose richly textured setting of southwestern Virginia in the 1940s draws on the reminiscences of his mother and grandmother...Readers of historical fiction will welcome his debut in the genre.”

    Library Journal

  • “An excellent portrait of race and class distinction of the time and place and of a young woman growing up. And a good read.”


  • “Baldacci slows things down a bit [in] Wish You Well, a story he culled from his own family’s history and experiences. It’s a coming-of-age tale reminiscent of that timeless classic To Kill a Mockingbird, where the setting—Virginia mountain coal country in the post-Depression 40s—is as much a character as any of the people who walk the pages.”

    Barnes & Noble, editorial review

  • A New York Times Bestseller
  • Winner of the AudioFile Earphones Award
  • A USA Today Bestseller

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Andrea | 2/12/2014

    " I have never read any of David Baldacci's books but it is my understanding that this novel is a departure from his usual writing. I have to say I would not have chosen this book on my own, I read it with a book club I am in. I did thoroughly enjoy this book. It is a beautiful story about two children who lose their father and move from New York city to the rural mountains of Virgina. They struggle to come to terms with the difficulty of losing a parent and the everyday difficulties of living a life that relies on the land. The book was certainly worth reading and the characters will stay with you for a long time. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Sandy Curry | 2/8/2014

    " This one's a tear jerker and very good. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Kristie Bleazard | 2/6/2014

    " I really enjoyed this book. Very different from his other titles. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 by Dennis Henn | 2/5/2014

    " Super cheesy. Predictable plot. The ending made me gag. Maybe this was written for a YA crowd. "

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