One Last Thing Before I Go by Jonathan Tropper (2012), narrated by John Shea
I almost stopped about a half hour in because I really don't like stories about neurotic middle-aged men whose lives are a mess and who sit around leering at college girls. But I gave it a little longer and soon was quite drawn into the story.
Silver was troubled, it's true. He was in a rut, having not recovered from the end of his marriage or his career. But you get the feeling that he can do better, that there's hope for him. That may have been enough to save the story for me, but what really clinched it was the appearance of his pregnant 18-year-old daughter. Young and full of promise, having only made one real mistake so far, she was a perfect counterpoint to Silver and it was this relationship that propelled the story and made it so compelling.
I listened to this audiobook in two sittings on a long drive and it really made the trip go by faster and more pleasantly. John Shea's narration is wholly appropriate for Silver's character. His voice is a bit gravelly and took some getting used to, but he really made Silver come alive. Occasionally he sounded a bit like Casey Kasem, which is either good or bad depending on how nostalgic you feel for the glory days of American Top 40. He wasn't bad at female voices (which can be tricky for male narrators) and excelled at others such as Silver's father, an energetic rabbi who wasn't about to sit around and watch his son let himself die.
If you like male-centered domestic fiction or stories about dysfunctional families, I recommend giving this a try.
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