Marlo is a quiet town. A small town where everyone seems to know one another and life is fairly simple. But when a website appears that invites the residents of Marlo to "listen" to private conversations that have been taking place around town, everything changes. Soon, the whole town is in turmoil as individuals react to the things their friends and neighbors have said about them in the privacy of their own homes.
In Listen, Rene Gutteridge shows us the true power of our words. She shows how the little criticisms spoken behind a person's back can crush a relationship, and even lead to physical harm and death. It's a fascinating concept, but unfortunately, I didn't like the book as much as I had hoped.
Gutteridge doesn't develop her characters enough to make me really understand their motivations and care about them. This is a big issue for me ~ my favorite books are the ones where I feel like I "know" the characters and understand why they do the things they do. This was not the case with the characters in Listen.
In addition, several of the events that take place in the story seem quite unrealistic. And as the story gets closer to the end, she starts including more and more Christian messages about the power of words. In general, though, I just didn't feel like it was well written. It seemed like her point was to make a statement about the power of words, rather than to tell a compelling story about interesting characters.
I had higher hopes for this book, and it didn't live up to my expectations. Despite that fact, I do think the topics it brings up would work very well for a book club.
My Rating: 2.5/5
This review was written based on an ebook copy of Listen that I got from Barnes and Noble as a Free Friday Nook Book.