Wednesday, January 20, 2010

THE UNNAMED AUDIO BOOK: REVIEW AND GIVEAWAY

GIVEAWAY ENDED
THE UNNAMED

AN AUDIO BOOK
BY JOSHUA FERRIS
READ BY JOSHUA FERRIS


ABOUT THE BOOK:

Joshua Ferris' debut novel Then We Came to the End was both heralded by critics and a New York Times bestseller, and marked the arrival of a startlingly talented young writer. With THE UNNAMED, Ferris imagines the collision between one man's free will and the forces of nature that are bigger than any of us. Tim Farnsworth walks. He walks out of meetings and out of bed. He walks in sweltering heat and numbing cold. He will walk without stopping until he falls asleep, wherever he is. This curious affliction has baffled medical experts around the globe--and come perilously close to ruining what should be a happy life. Tim has a loving family, a successful law career and a beautiful suburban home, all of which he maintains spectacularly well until his feet start moving again. What drives a man to stay in a marriage, in a job? What forces him away? Is love or conscience enough to overcome the darker, stronger urges of the natural world? THE UNNAMED is a deeply felt, luminous novel about modern life, ancient yearnings, and the power of human understanding.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Joshua Ferris's first novel, Then We Came to the End, won the Hemingway Foundation/PEN Award, the Barnes and Noble Discover Award, and was a National Book Award finalist. His fiction has appeared in The New Yorker, Granta, the Guardian, and Tin House, among other publications. He lives in New York.

REVIEW:

THE UNNAMED is the second book by Joshua Ferris but there is nothing second place about this one. I had not read the first one nor reviews and so entered with no idea of what I was getting into. Tim is the main character and is suffering, to put it mildly, from an unnamed disease. He is a lawyer in New York and so at least provides a comfortable life for his family. His wife, Jane, is loyal to the point almost of disbelief as she stays by his side throughout this strange illness. What happens is that at any moment with no reason, Tim takes off on long walks with nothing or no place in mind. He has been to all kinds of doctors but none of them can offer an explanation for the disease. Although Tim and Jane and their daughter, Becka, appear to be a normal family, as the book goes on, I began to question that initial idea. The couple love one another but I am not sure any love could stand up to this illness and its strange occurrences.

The writing and book at first drew me in as I assumed it would finally come up with some kind of prognosis. After a while, and after the long walks, I realized the author used the walks to somewhat explain Tim's inner emotions and thoughts. He also made the reader understand that even the money this family had was not enough to save him or to keep the family together. Becka, the daughter, was my favorite character. She stayed away from her father and she was also the one who I felt changed the most in the story as it progressed.

By the second half of the book, however, I began to find it hard to continue "walking" with Tim. His walking disease seemed so pointless to me as I felt surely more could have been done for him medically, even if it meant hospitalization and confinement to study and try different cures or remedies. The medication they give him did help somewhat but when Tim makes decisions that really are dangerous for his health, Jane allows it and that I found hard to believe. It was frustrating to me that she didn't insist on some kind of confinement but then again, not to sound trite, but I didn't "walk in their shoes" (thank goodness). Overall, I think the audio book is a much better way to "read" this book as it presents it with more feeling in the voices so it was easier to go along with. I am not sorry I read this book but am pretty sure that Joshua Ferris really has more depth and hidden meaning in this story if you analyze this book. However, I just didn't read it perhaps at a time when I felt I wanted to spend THAT much effort analyzing it. I wasn't in the mood to work that hard on a book. I think everyone will get a somewhat different take on this book and can't imagine it won't pull people in to begin with. I do think some people will totally devour this book while others, depending on their mood, may feel a little different about expending that much effort. I wonder how YOU will feel after you have read THE UNNAMED?

AN AUDIO BOOK GIVEAWAY

THANKS TO ANNA AND THE
HACHETTE BOOK GROUP FOR
SPONSORING THIS GIVEAWAY,
I HAVE 3 COPIES OF THIS AUDIO
BOOK TO GIVE AWAY TO YOU!


RULES:
**U.S. AND CANADIAN RESIDENTS ONLY
**NO P.O. BOXES, PLEASE
**MUST INCLUDE EMAIL ADDRESS IN COMMENT
**ALL COMMENTS MUST BE SEPARATE TO COUNT

HOW TO ENTER:


+1 ENTRY: LISTEN AND WATCH THE VIDEO ABOVE AND COMMENT ON WHAT YOU THOUGHT ABOUT IT PERSONALLY

+1 MORE ENTRY: COMMENT ON IF YOU ARE A GOOGLE FRIEND CONNECT FOLLOWER AND IF NOT, PLEASE JOIN IN MY LEFT HAND COLUMN. I AM STILL TRYING TO GET TO 600

+1 MORE ENTRY: COMMENT IF YOU ALREADY ARE A LOYAL FOLLOWER OF ANY KIND AND WHERE/HOW

+1 MORE ENTRY:
BLOG OR TWEET ABOUT THIS GIVEAWAY AND COME BACK HERE WITH THE LINK

ALL ENTRIES MUST BE IN

BY 6 PM, EST, FEBRUARY 2


GOOD LUCK TO ALL!

49 comments:

thetruebookaddict said...

I enjoyed your review...a very honest and constructive review.

I'm not entering the giveaway. Just wanted to stop by and give you this award:

http://thetruebookaddict.blogspot.com/2010/01/awards.html

Buukluvr81 said...

Just stopping by to tell you that
you have an award waiting for your here!

Blessings and hugs!

Charleydog said...

Interesting how the man narrates while the scene changes from what I can identify as the walk of fame in Hollywood, Coney Island, etc.

pboylecharley AT hotmail DOT com

rubynreba said...

I liked the video
pbclark(at)netins(dot)net

rubynreba said...

I follow
pbclark(at)netins(dot)net

rubynreba said...

I was already a follower
pbclark(at)netins(dot)net

dor said...

I didn't get it at first until I read the review.This made me feel sad but curios at the same time. What an illness. Would love to enter.

dorcontest at gmail dot com

dor said...

I follow on google friend....dor

dorcontest at gmail dot com

Amy said...

What a strange, interesting book! Listening to and watching the video what struck me as significant is when Tim's clothers were discussed. He came home with all sorts of dirt, garbage stains etc. on his clothes. Now Tim's a lawyer so I'd guess intelligent. But it sounds like when he walks, he doesn't think or notice anything around him. I'm surprised he hasn't been hit by a car, walked into any doors or scaffolding, fallen in a ditch.

It sounds like a strange disorder that doesn't quite fulfill its potential. I'm intrigued, though but it feels similar to when your are driving by a car accident...you don't want to look but you almost can't help it. I'm not sure I'm going to enjoy this book but I want to know what happens! lol

Thank you for another wonderful giveaway!

Amy
Aimala127 AT gmail DOT com

Amy said...

I am a Google Friend Connect Follower!

Amy
Aimala127 AT gmail DOT com

Amy said...

I am as loyal and hapopy follower of your fantastic blog. I follow on Blogger Dashboard and Google Reader!



Amy
Aimala127@gmail.com

Amy said...

I tweeted this giveaway here: Audiobook Giveaway

(ID: Amestir)

Amy
Aimala127 AT gmail DOT com

409cope said...

This sounds like a very intriguing and interesting story. Interesting walk he is on in the vidio. cardshark42(at)hotmail(dot)com

409cope said...

I follow through google friend. cardshark42(at)hotmail(dot)com

justpeachy36 said...

justpeachy36@yahoo.com

Please enter me in the giveaway.
I liked the video it really illustrated how the man just kept walking and walking.

justpeachy36 said...

justpeachy36@yahoo.com

I am an old follower.

MiscMayzee said...

I saw the windmills and have seen windmills like that outside of Peoria, IL.

ashleymaymott(at)aol(dot)com

MiscMayzee said...

i follow with google friend connect

Ashley Mott
ashleymaymott(at)aol(dot)com

MiscMayzee said...

I get e-mail newsletters

ashleymaymott(at)aol(dot)com

kalea_kane said...

I liked your review, Karen. I can see how some of the story would be frustrating to read. I imagine the audio book would be an interesting medium for the story. Not entering. I just really enjoyed your take on it. Have a beautiful day!

g.g. said...

I like your honest review...I would like to try and make my way thro so please enter me

anjamie4 at gmail dot com

g.g. said...

I subscribe with email and follow


anjamie4 at gmail dot com

Benita said...

The story seems to frustrate me a bit also. I'm not sure why he is so unaware or dazed. I hope he's ok. At any rate, I would try to read it, maybe I could enjoy it.

bgcchs(at)yahoo(dot)com

Benita said...

I follow via google friend connect.

bgcchs(at)yahoo(dot)com

Benita said...

I'm certainly a loyal follower. I subscribe via email.

bgcchs(at)yahoo(dot)com

Jaime said...

Is he looking for something on these walks? He walk past so much without really seeing, what is he looking for or maybe he is walking towards something. Is it a path he thinks he should have taken? A missed road?
Would love to find out
copperllama at yahoo dot com

Jaime said...

google and email follower
copperllama at yahoo dot com

Jaime said...

tweet
http://twitter.com/Copperllama/status/8264087419
copperllama at yahoo dot com

Aik said...

I think the video is OK. :)

aikychien at yahoo dot com

Aik said...

I'm a follower.

aikychien at yahoo dot com

Aik said...

Already a follower.

aikychien at yahoo dot com

amweeks said...

I think the person telling the story has a very monotonous voice. But maybe that's just to reflect that feeling of walking for a looooong time! The video defiitely makes me want to read the book, though!

amweeks said...

I follow! (amweeks)

amweeks said...

I follow on Networked Blogs! (Annmarie Dipasqua Weeks)

amweeks said...

I follow you on twitter! (amweeks)

Sean said...

please enter me
spynaert@gmail.com

Deb K said...

I really liked your review and after watching the video I really want to know what he is looking for on his walk too..

deb55106(at)gmail(dot)com

Dina said...

From the video, I think his style is interesting if unusual. I like the way the camera seems to move up and down with each step - creates the illusion you are walking along the narrator. Aitmama {{at}} gmail {{tod}} com

Dina said...

I follow you - should be up to 600 in no time, you are at 592 now ;-) Aitmama {{at}} gmail {{tod}} com

Dina said...

ALREADY A LOYAL FOLLOWER via Google. Aitmama {{at}} gmail {{tod}} com

Dina said...

http://twitter.com/aitmama/status/8553162960

Edna said...

Please enter me


mamat2730(at)charter(dot)net

Edna said...

I have your link on my blog http://edna-myfavoritethings.blogspot.com/



mamat2730(at)charter(dot)net

Edna said...

I follow you on Twitter


mamat2730(at)charter(dot)net

Edna said...

I viewed the video and it seems to be an interesting book


mamat2730(at)charter(dot)net

Nancye said...

The video confused me. It seemed too long and drawn out (for just a little over a minute). Reading about the book makes it sound interesting, but if I only saw the video I probably would choose not to read it. Just my opinion.

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

Nancye said...

I follow via Google Friend Connect

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

Nancye said...

I'm a loyal follow on Google Friend Connect and I am also an e-mail subscriber.

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

Nancye said...

Tweet! Tweet!

http://twitter.com/NancyeDavis/status/8561265282

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

CLICK HERE TO
SEE MY POLICY