Published by: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Published on: July 10, 2012
Page Count: 320
My Reading Format: Audiobook sent to me by the publisher for consideration
Audiobook Published by: Blackstone Audio
Narrator: John Lee
Audiobook Length: 10 hours
Available Formats: Hardcover, eBook, and Audiobook
Tara Martin had been missing since she was a teenager. Presumed dead, her parents and her brother Peter moved on with their lives as best as they could. Peter is married with a family of four, his oldest daughter a teenager herself. When Tara shows up on her parents’ front step unannounced one Christmas morning, it should be cause for celebration, but Peter is leery. He leaves his family that Christmas Day and drives to meet her alone. He does not understand why she simply left them without another word. When she tries to fill in the blanks of those missing years, Peter is suspicious. He doesn’t believe her story. That she doesn’t look a day older than she did the day she vanished doesn’t help matters. While his parents are simply happy to have her home again, Peter wants the truth from Tara. What he couldn’t know is that he’s no prepared for the truth than anyone else.
Some Kind of Fairy Tale took me well out of my comfort zone. While this appears to be the story of a young woman who disappears, just where she goes and what happens while she is there is as hard for me to accept and even believe as it is for Peter. I wanted to be happy for Tara’s return, but I found myself siding with Peter. I kept her at arm’s length for much of the novel. Her story seemed blatantly false and I wanted to know what could have been so awful that she would make that up. It isn’t until she begins to visit the psychiatrist that I gave her story more credence. Its connection to Peter’s family and his children could not be dismissed.
As I have come to expect, John Lee did a fantastic job as narrator. The major characters all had a distinct voice and his tone and pacing matched the story to perfection. I especially liked the way his narration never took sides. It’s a hard quality to describe, but I never once felt as though the way he told the story impacted my perception.
Graham Joyce is a gifted writer who I might not have otherwise discovered had it not been for audiobooks. Living in a place like Tara and Peter, it isn’t hard to imagine that there is a connection between the day to day world and something else. Some Kind of Fairy Tale is a reminder that fairy tales were not invented by Disney and that their roots are far darker than anything you might think to read your children before bed. Pick up this book if you want a smart, challenging read. This novel is a sure bet when narrated by John Lee.