Tag Archives: The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry

Thanks for Telling Me! Recommended Audiobooks Day 3 @BBAW #BBAW

Book Blogger Appreciation Week is an annual event originated by My Friend Amy in 2008 that ran for five years, and has now been brought back after a hiatus by The Estella Society.

Day 3  What have you read and loved because of a fellow blogger?

Book blogger buzz makes me add so many books to my virtual TBR pile that I decided to post about a few favorite audiobooks today, to make it a more manageable-sized list.

Beauty Queens by Libba Bray, narrated by Libba Bray

Beauty Queens CD

Oops, I thought Care from Care’s Books and Pie recommended this hilarious audiobook to me, but it turns out I recommended it to her! I don’t remember a particular blogger’s recommendation, but I used to get a lot of audio recommendations through the weekly Sound Bytes link-up (which, sadly, is no more) at Devourer of Books, so I may have caught the buzz about Beauty Queens there.

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline, narrated by Wil Wheaton

Ready Player One CD

I definitely listened to this story of a do-or-die gamer quest because of book blogger buzz during Audiobook Week. (I think there may be a Wil Wheaton fan club subset out there.) but again, I’m not sure if it was anyone in particular. I loved it so much I never wrote up my review, but it made my list of Better on Audio.

The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin, narrated by Scott Brick

cover image of audiobook on CD

I thought this book about a grouchy bookseller would be too cutesy, but book blogger buzz convinced me to try The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry (even to buy my own copy because I couldn’t get it from the library!) although, again, I can’t pinpoint a particular review. Read my review, please, and then beg, borrow, or steal buy the audiobook!

If one of these avid audiobook listeners recommends an audiobook, I usually listen! (I hope I’m not forgetting anybody!)

Candace at Beth Fish Reads
Sheila at Book Journey
Care at Care’s Books and Pie
Bob at The Guilded Earlobe
Jenn at Jenn’s Bookshelves
JoAnn at Lakeside Musing
Jennifer at Literate Housewife

I also refer to AudioFile Magazine reviews a lot to decide whether to read or listen to a book. Did you know you can subscribe by email to four different FREE AudioFile newletters?

I need to start making notes and keeping better records of who recommended what for the next BBAW!

And now that Andi, Heather, and the gang have brought back BBAW, who else wants to bring back Audiobook Week this June?

Click on the image below for the Linky List of Day Three posts!BBAW2016

The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry (Audio)

cover image of audiobook on CDThe Storied Life of A.J. Fikry, a novel by Gabrielle Zevin, is about a grieving widower named A.J. – old before his time at not even 40 – whose lonely life as a judgmental, cantankerous bookseller on Alice Island (a fictional Massachusetts island much like Martha’s Vineyard) is transformed when a small child named Maya enters his life. Narrated by Scott Brick, The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry was one of my favorite audiobooks of 2014. Bookish and clever, funny and moving, it’s a wonderful story, even if completely unrealistic.

I started this post back in May, but never wrote up a review, so I thought I’d just share a couple of quotes from the book. Lambiase (pronounced Lamb-bee-ay-zay, as I recall) is the police detective who is investigating the abandonment of Maya in A.J.’s bookstore.

“Lambiase does not miss his wife, although he does miss having somewhere to go after work. He parks himself on the floor and pulls Maya onto his lap. After Maya falls asleep, Lambiase tells A.J. the things he’s learned about the mother.

‘What’s strange to me,’ A.J. says, ‘is why she was on Alice Island in the first place. It’s kind of a pain to get here, you know. My own mother’s visited me once in all the years I’ve lived here. You really believe she wasn’t coming to see someone specific?’

Lambiase shifts Maya in his lap. ‘I’ve been thinking about that. Maybe she didn’t have a plan of where she was going. Maybe she just took the first train, and then the first bus, and then the first boat, and this is where she ended up.’

A.J. nods out of politeness, but he doesn’t believe in random acts. He is a reader, and what he believes in is narrative construction. If a gun appears in Act One, that gun had better go off by Act Three.”

* * *

Lambiase nods, and drinks his wine. “Nobody’s saying you have to keep her.”

“Yeah, yeah, of course. But do you think I could have some sort of say in where she ended up? She’s an awfully smart little thing. Like she already knows the alphabet, and I even got her to understand alphabetical order. I’d hate to see her land with some jerks who didn’t appreciate that. As I was saying before, I don’t believe in fate. But I do feel a sense of responsibility toward her. That young woman did leave her in my care.”

If you like quirky books like Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore or Where’d You Go, Bernadette?, or books that are about books and reading, you’ll probably like The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry very much. Listen to an excerpt here.

The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry
Zevin, Gabrielle
Brick, Scott (narr.)
Highbridge Audio
April 2014
9781622313532
7 hours on 7 CDs
$29.95

Disclosure: I bought my own copy of this audiobook, which is nice, because I might want to listen to it again sometime.

Other opinions on the audiobook edition:
AudioFile
The Literate Housewife
Words and Peace