I sometimes struggle to find good audio books, so when Sandy recommended Testimony I bought a copy straight away. Sandy is right – this book is perfect for listening to.
The book begins with the headmaster of a school discovering a tape of three 18-year-old boys having sex with a 14-year-old girl. The story then unfolds via the ‘testimonies’ of various people affected by the incident. Each person reveals how they experienced the events in the first person, something which I don’t like when reading a book, but this worked really well when listening to the story. I felt like each character was just explaining things to me, so I connected really well with them and it seemed very realistic.
There are a large number of characters, but the different voices helped me to identify with each one, so I didn’t get confused at any point. Had I been reading the book I think I would have become confused by the number of characters, irritated by the first person voice and possibly given up on it.
The book raises many thought-provoking questions, including who is to blame when teenagers mis-behave? Is it possible for a 14-year-old to seduce an 18-year-old, or is it always rape? Should a single action be held against someone for the rest of their lives?
The narrator held my attention throughout, encouraging me to continue listening to the extent that I listened to this faster than any other audio book in the past.
I highly recommend the audio book version of Testimony, and think it would make an interesting book club choice.
What is the most gripping audio book you have ever listened to?
This is the first Anita Shreve book I have tried. Are any of her others really good?