This is an audiobook review because I couldn’t resist. I do want to point out that Nafiza has already reviewed this book (and she did such a nice job too!).
Audiobook narrators: Mark Bramhall, David de Vries, Andrews MacLeod, and Rebecca Soler (who also did Marissa Meyer’s Lunar Chronicles, an excellent reader!)
Ever since I started walking half an hour to work last year, and then after having my daughter and walking for at least half an hour a day I started listening to audiobooks. It’s the only way that I can keep up with the amount that I need to read. I have been falling in love with the medium–it can truly be a totally different experience from actually reading the novel.
This is the case with Muñoz Ryan’s Echo.
The audiobook was magical to listen to. Each of the audiobook performers did such a great job bringing to life each of the characters and the store that is all woven around one simple instrument. To find out more about the story, I recommend reading Nafiza’s review (linked above).
What I want to say here is that I can’t imagine a better way of experiencing Echo. The story, told by four different characters (and audiobook narrators, which was so nice as it really individuated each voice and story) was infused with performances of the pieces of music in the story. We listen to beautiful harmonica renditions of Brahm’s “Lullaby,” “America the Beautiful” and “Old Lang Syne” (to name a few) as well as some Orchestra music and a few pieces of cello music and the audio readers sing at times as well (and nicely, sometimes in an audiobook their singing is a bit jarring . . . and bad, but it’s great in Echo!). So the music and story are actually fused as they unravel making for a fully sensational narrative.
One thing that listening to the audiobook denies (and this is probably a good thing) is the sneak ahead read. I had no idea that the story would wind back around to Otto and his fairy tale beginning or that we would find out what happened to each of our characters–and perhaps because of this the final wrap up section felt a little bit like a happy ending bow when I had felt completely satisfied with the unknowing, trusting that music would see the characters through their hardships.
Let me know what you think! I’m curious about the comparison between novel and audiobook 🙂