by Delia Owens
Narrator: Cassandra Campbell
Length: 12 hours and 12 minutes
Genres: Historical Fiction
Purchase*: Amazon | Audible *affiliate
Narration: 5 cups Speed: 1.3x
How long can you protect your heart?
For years, rumors of the "Marsh Girl" have haunted Barkley Cove, a quiet town on the North Carolina coast. So in late 1969, when handsome Chase Andrews is found dead, the locals immediately suspect Kya Clark, the so-called Marsh Girl. But Kya is not what they say. Sensitive and intelligent, she has survived for years alone in the marsh that she calls home, finding friends in the gulls and lessons in the sand. Then the time comes when she yearns to be touched and loved. When two young men from town become intrigued by her wild beauty, Kya opens herself to a new life - until the unthinkable happens.
Perfect for fans of Barbara Kingsolver and Karen Russell, Where the Crawdads Sing is at once an exquisite ode to the natural world, a heartbreaking coming-of-age story, and a surprising tale of possible murder. Owens reminds us that we are forever shaped by the children we once were, and that we are all subject to the beautiful and violent secrets that nature keeps.
The story of the “marsh girl” was beautiful, brilliant and captivating making the one-hundred and forty-five-day wait to borrow the audiobook copy of Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens from my local library completely worth it.
The story that unfolds is told in two-parts meandering back and forth between the two. The author cleverly weaved the murder-investigation throughout the story of Kya’s upbringing letting the reader/listener wonder how and when these two threads would converge.
Kya Clark, dubbed the “marsh girl” by the locals lives in a shack setback in the marshes off the coastal shoreline of North Carolina. This first part of the story begins in 1952 when Kya is just six-years-old. She was born in the marsh and lived with her family until one by one they all left. She raised herself among the gulls and shells. Her connection to the marsh and her story is told with breathtaking prose. This character driven novel had me stopping and sitting as I listened to the narrations of Cassandra Campbell who beautifully captured Kya’s drawl.
The second part of the story occurs in 1969 when the town’s former football hero, Chase Andrews, is found dead beneath the local watch tower. Before too long, Kya is arrested for his murder.
The two threads eventually merge and honestly one held no weight over the other. I felt comfortable and riveted by both threads. While one is suspenseful, it had a southern feel to it and unfolded slowly and built as evidence and accusations were made.
Every once in a while a book comes along that sticks with you and changes you in subtle ways; Where the Crawdads Sing is one of the those books. If you enjoy audiobooks, this book was made to be listened to and Campbell does a fantastic job bringing Owens beautiful prose and characters to life.
While I listened, I ended up buying a hardcover copy to add to my bookshelf so that I could pull it down and read memorable passages again and again. There is a beauty and richness to Owens’ words I will always treasure.
Reading this book contributed to these challenges:
I am so glad you enjoyed this audiobook as much as I did. It was so atmospheric that I was sucked right into the story. Wonderful review Kimberly.
Anne - Books of My Heart
This is not a genre I enjoy too much. I want real historical. But this one is highly recommended from multiple friends and set in NC so I might have to read it. Definitely on audio. Excellent review.
Stephanie @ Once Upon a Chapter
I’ve seen so much about this book but have never stopped to find out what it’s about. Your review and the audio clip have added this one to my wish list! I’m so glad I read your review. Thanks for sharing!
Jan @ Notes from a Readerholic
I have wondered about this book, Kimberly. You wrote a great review and sold me! I’m going to go find it. Thank you.
Suzanne @ The Bookish Libra
I’m listening to the audiobook for this one right now and am so captivated by the story and the writing. I worried it would live up to the hype when I first started reading, but completely agree with you that this is a special story.
I wondered what you thought of this one. I am so tempted but trying to control my reading purchases but I so like to listen to you..
Tyler H. Jolley
I’m completely hooked! I can’t wait to dive into this one.
Melissa (Books and Things)
Oh I love it when 2 threads like that are equally interesting and then merge. You have me curious about this one and I hope my library has it!
Wow! What a wonderful review – this one clearly held you spellbound. Thank you for sharing:)
Jenea's Book Obsession
The setting and Kya sound wonderful. I am glad to hear it was well worth the wait.
Jonetta (Ejaygirl) | Blue Mood Café
This one ranks as my best listen to date. I loved it and your review is a lovely tribute.
Glad to hear the wait was worth it.
i’ve seen this book around and the catchy title alone made me want to read it. glad it surpassed your expectations. it’s rare, finding a book that sticks with you long after you put it down
I always love that when I read an ebook and that I love it so much that I need the physical copy too
Aj @ Read All The Things!
I love historical fiction and books set in rural locations, so this novel sounds perfect for me. I’m glad you liked it!
i think the drawl would be a good reason to start audiobook, but probably one day
Kimberley I totally agree with you! Iread it but I can imagine the drawl must have added even more to the experience! This is one of the most beautiful books I have ever read thanks to Delia’s writing ti describe the Marsh’s beauty!