In the Lives of Puppets

A very unusual family comes together in this hilarious science fiction adventure.

    • 4.0 • 24 Ratings
    • $19.99

    • $19.99

Publisher Description

"Narrator Daniel Henning demonstrates perfect comedic timing and impressive vocal versatility in this queer/sci-fi retelling of 'Pinocchio.' This laugh-out-loud, emotional audiobook asks listeners to question what it means to be human." - AudioFile Magazine (Earphones Award Winner)

"Narrator Daniel Henning does a phenomenal job capturing Gio’s fatherliness and Vic’s early naivete, and he positively shines as the heartless, bloodthirsty Nurse Ratched and the anxiety-ridden robot vacuum Rambo."- Library Journal

New York Times bestselling author TJ Klune invites you deep into the heart of a peculiar forest and on the extraordinary journey of a family assembled from spare parts.

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“An enchanting tale of Pinocchio in the end times.” —P. Djèlí Clark

In a strange little home built into the branches of a grove of trees, live three robots—fatherly inventor android Giovanni Lawson, a pleasantly sadistic nurse machine, and a small vacuum desperate for love and attention. Victor Lawson, a human, lives there too. They’re a family, hidden and safe.

The day Vic salvages and repairs an unfamiliar android labelled “HAP,” he learns of a shared dark past between Hap and Gio–a past spent hunting humans.

When Hap unwittingly alerts robots from Gio’s former life to their whereabouts, the family is no longer hidden and safe. Gio is captured and taken back to his old laboratory in the City of Electric Dreams. So together, the rest of Vic’s assembled family must journey across an unforgiving and otherworldly country to rescue Gio from decommission, or worse, reprogramming.

Along the way to save Gio, amid conflicted feelings of betrayal and affection for Hap, Vic must decide for himself: Can he accept love with strings attached?

Inspired by Carlo Collodi's The Adventures of Pinocchio, and like Swiss Family Robinson meets Wall-E, In the Lives of Puppets is a masterful stand-alone fantasy adventure from the beloved author who brought you The House in the Cerulean Sea and Under the Whispering Door.

★ “An epic quest of rescue and discovery [with] the author’s trademark charm, heart, and bittersweetness.” —Library Journal, starred review

A Macmillan Audio production from Tor Books.

Sci-Fi & Fantasy
Daniel Henning
hr min
April 25
Macmillan Audio

Customer Reviews

screamo!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ,

An instant favorite

“What do you do if you’ve forgotten all that you know? You start again from the beginning.”

Inspired by Carlo Collodi’s Pinnochio, TJ Klune once again invites us to enjoy a story with all of the humor, heartbreak, and hope we’ve come to expect from him. The characters he writes are some of memorable I’ve ever read, and Daniel Henning’s narration helps them really come to life. I especially loved the back and forth between Rambo and Nurse Ratched. But by far the most compelling characters were HAP and Victor. Throughout this book, HAP is struggling with the infamous weight of emotion brought on by his new heart, and is looking to Victor for guidance. All the while, Victor comes to grapple with not only the sins of HAP and his father, but what it means to be a human in a world dominated by machines.

Klune has also received well deserved praise for how his writing helps to normalize LGBT+ identities. This book meant so much to me especially since Victor’s presence offers great representation for asexual individuals. As someone who identifies as asexual, this was wonderful to read, as authentic asexual representation is sadly hard to find.

The last few years have been extremely hard for all of us, and Klune’s books have provided me with so much hope and comfort. This book especially will have you both laughing out loud at all the character interactions, and sobbing uncontrollably at its bittersweet ending. This book more than lives up to Klune’s reputations, and I can’t wait to visit it again.

vagibson ,


So beautiful. Pinocchio meets The Wizard of Oz meets 1984…with a twist! Can’t stop thinking about this book, both smiling thinking of the amazing humor, the characters, but crying because my heart misses the them and I’m so sad and happy at how it ended. Just a beautiful book.

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