#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
A TODAY Show Read with Jenna Book Club Pick
A New York Times Notable Book, and Chosen by Oprah Quarterly and The Washington Post as a Best Book of the Year
“Wise and wildly entertaining . . . permeated with light, wit, youth.” —The New York Times Book Review
“A classic that we will read for years to come.” —Jenna Bush Hager, Read with Jenna book club
“A real joyride . . . elegantly constructed and compulsively readable.” – NPR
The bestselling author of A Gentleman in Moscow and Rules of Civility and master of absorbing, sophisticated fiction returns with a stylish and propulsive novel set in 1950s America
In June, 1954, eighteen-year-old Emmett Watson is driven home to Nebraska by the warden of the juvenile work farm where he has just served fifteen months for involuntary manslaughter. His mother long gone, his father recently deceased, and the family farm foreclosed upon by the bank, Emmett's intention is to pick up his eight-year-old brother, Billy, and head to California where they can start their lives anew. But when the warden drives away, Emmett discovers that two friends from the work farm have hidden themselves in the trunk of the warden's car. Together, they have hatched an altogether different plan for Emmett's future, one that will take them all on a fateful journey in the opposite direction—to the City of New York.
Spanning just ten days and told from multiple points of view, Towles's third novel will satisfy fans of his multi-layered literary styling while providing them an array of new and richly imagined settings, characters, and themes.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
Amor Towles’ heartfelt coming-of-age story is a great reminder that the most rewarding life path isn’t always a straight one. After orphaned 18-year-old Emmett Watson is released from a juvenile detention facility in the 1950s, he heads home to the foreclosed family farm in Nebraska. Emmett hopes to load his little brother into his Studebaker and find a new life for them in Texas, but when two rambunctious former inmates show up, they throw a wrench in Emmett’s plans, launching him and his kid brother on a rollicking cross-country road trip that will change his life forever. Actor Edoardo Ballerini lends his assured voice to the tale, reading it with just the right amount of urgency as Towles takes us on an unforgettable journey through America’s heartland. Towles has already proven he’s a master of elegant historical fiction with his previous novels, A Gentleman in Moscow and Rules of Civility, and this boisterous, emotional story suggests he’s got even more range than we thought. It’s a fantastic and immersive listen.
A beautiful gift
This is one of the most beautiful books I have read in a long time. The story is as epic as any Greek fable, but the character development was simply
beautiful and a gift. Thank you.
The language, the character development, the plot, all woven together to produce a magical, serendipitous epic. I cannot recommend this enough.
Great production; excellent voice actors.
This is a review of the audiobook. One of the best productions I have listened to. Each chapter was read with care and passion.
The story itself is brilliant too - full of colorful characters, orchestrated through challenges of life, and given opportunities to act out the best and the worst in them. You would cheer for them. You would weep for them. Highly recommended.