“The Cider House Rules” by John Irving – narrated by Grover Gardner

I loved this book! I’m wishing I hadn’t gotten so behind on book posts because I tend to forget points I wanted to make when I write about them so much later and I finished this one on April third. This was one of the books that Audible had on sale at one point during a books into movies sale. I never saw the movie but downloaded the book back during the sale, mostly because it was narrated by Grover Gardner. If he narrates a book, chances are it’s going to be great unless it’s that one Robin Cook book I couldn’t finish.

Grover Gardner is just so good. I don’t know how to describe why I like his narrating so much. He’s simple, but each character sounds slightly different. He doesn’t sound like he’s overacting and he doesn’t sound bored. He’s just plain good! Would I have loved this book so much if he didn’t narrate it? Who knows.

This book follows the life of an orphan named Homer Wells, brought up in an orphanage during the early 1900’s. Expectant mothers would come to the orphanage to have one of two things, an orphan, or an abortion. Abortion has been and will always be a touchy subject. I found myself going back and forth in my own feelings and beliefs as I read this book.

Even though the subject matter was so serious, the underlying humor and Gardner’s delivery of it made me laugh out loud several times. Homer is such a lovable character and I still find myself thinking of him when I say, “right” during a conversation.

Will Homer Wells become a doctor like Wilbur Larch, the director of the orphanage? Will Homer stick to the decision he’s made that he isn’t ok with abortion?

Oh, thinking about this book makes me want to read it again. I was tempted to rent the movie but one of the reviews at Audible said the movie was terrible so I won’t bother. I tried reading “David Copperfield” after I finished ‘Cider’ because it was Homer’s favorite book and was referenced a lot, but I got a public domain copy and the narration was not good. I also decided the subject matter was too dark to follow ‘Cider’ so I gave up on it after three nights.

Oh! At the end of ‘Cider’, there’s some really good author’s notes. Apparently John Irving’s father was a doctor which was partly what inspired this book. I just love author’s notes! I highly recommend this book if you can stomach the subject matter.

Rating: Marriage Material.

“The Cider House Rules” at Audible ~ “The Cider House Rules” at Amazon

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Filed under 2013 Book List, Audio books

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