The Boy in the Field: A Novel

Written by:
Margot Livesey
Narrated by:
Imogen Church

Unabridged Audiobook

Release Date
August 2020
7 hours 49 minutes
The New York Times bestselling author of The Flight of Gemma Hardy delivers another “luminous, unforgettable, and perfectly rendered” (Dennis Lehane) novel—a poignant and probing psychological drama that follows the lives of three siblings in the wake of a violent crime.

One September afternoon in 1999, teenagers Matthew, Zoe, and Duncan Lang are walking home from school when they discover a boy lying in a field, bloody and unconscious. Thanks to their intervention, the boy’s life is saved. In the aftermath, all three siblings are irrevocably changed. 

Matthew, the oldest, becomes obsessed with tracking down the assailant, secretly searching the local town with the victim’s brother. Zoe wanders the streets of Oxford, looking at men, and one of them, a visiting American graduate student, looks back. Duncan, the youngest, who has seldom thought about being adopted, suddenly decides he wants to find his birth mother. Overshadowing all three is the awareness that something is amiss in their parents’ marriage. Over the course of the autumn, as each of the siblings confronts the complications and contradictions of their approaching adulthood, they find themselves at once drawn together and driven apart.

Written with the deceptive simplicity and power of a fable, The Boy in the Field showcases Margot Livesey’s unmatched ability to “tell her tale masterfully, with intelligence, tenderness, and a shrewd understanding of all our mercurial human impulses” (Lily King, author of Euphoria).
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Linda M.

I was very disappointed with this audiobook. I had read a number of reviews of the printed book and they were impressive. However, I found this book, though initially interesting, lost its way. The story centers on how a traumatic discovery affects the young members of a family who had made the discovery, and had ramifications throughout their family. The premise is good but as the story went along, this idea seemed to get lost. There were developments in the story line which seemed to have no connection to the traumatic event and frankly, were not interesting. In addition the narration of this audiobook was poor. The narrator kept stressing passages in an odd way that broke up the flow. Also, three of the characters were teenage children and she read their dialogue as if they were three year-olds. Toward the end of the book, I looked up reviews of it again to see if the book had been written for teenagers - it hadn't. I don't know if I wondered this because of the reader's style, or if the book would have come across like that anyway. I would not recommend this book either in print or audio.

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