Girl Underwater

Unabridged Audiobook

Written By: Aislinn Hunter

Narrated By: Fiona Hardingham

Publisher: Penguin Audio

Date: March 2015

Duration: 8 hours 41 minutes


“The World Before Us is a powerful balancing act. . . . It moves confidently line-by-line, drawing us in. It is a novel of considerable beauty, threaded with violence and pain, a melancholic book with moments of grace and joy. It is a thought-provoking novel, haunting and haunted, rooted in the power of history and of the individuals within it, and outside it. . . . It is the sort of novel which forces you to look at the world—the people around you, the objects they hold dear—in a different light.”
—The Globe and Mail

“An ambitious new novel about the vitality of objects and history’s knack for bleeding into the present. Intricate in both expression and construction, and dense in thematic implication, The World Before Us cleverly innovates while tipping a nod to classic Gothic tropes: dynastic rivalries, crumbling country houses, madhouses and vanished girls. Hunter is less tempted by spooky thrills than the chance to explore ways in which human affection resonates across time.”
—National Post

“A haunting tale of loss and reconciliation. . . . The novel’s three timelines are deftly woven together, illustrating the ways life takes on meaning even through objects and places. Hunter refers to history as ‘a shifting trickster’ and uses that premise to hook readers, as they . . . embark on a quest for meaning and truth in the face of tragedy.”

“The novel’s characters are deeply imagined and multi-layered, and brought to life through potent scenes and fresh images. . . . The startling narrative point of view deepens the story, and even adds odd flashes of humour. Hunter . . . is a versatile writer, and with The World Before Us, she has created her most ambitious and original work, one that demands the deep, concentrated focus of its readers.”
—Quill and Quire

“A richly layered narrative harmonizing the past and present, dissolving the boundaries of time frames and showing the possible connections between people and places and objects. . . . The World Before Us is a well-constructed and thoughtful novel on serious subjects. The historical detail never overwhelms; instead it brings alive the past and shows the seamlessness of past and present, especially the human need for contact, which transcends time and place.”
—The Vancouver Sun

“Once in a rare while a novel comes along to remind us of what great fiction can do: creating a world so sublimely felt that, for the hours we spend reading, we are lifted out of our own lives, and when we return we find ourselves immeasurably altered and enriched. The World Before Us by Aislinn Hunter is such a novel. It is a brilliant work of humanity and imagination, artful and breathtakingly beautiful, and it will continue to haunt long after you have finished reading.”
—Helen Humphreys


  • Dawn Stewart

    Not bad. Took forever to listen to. Nothing really stunning about the book. Avery was annoying.