Sunday, April 16, 2017

THE SHADOW LAND by Elizabeth Kostova Audio Edition

Well remembered for her bestselling novels The Swan Thieves and The Historian this suspenseful novel will simply add to her luster.  Listening to the story as read by four such talented narrators is very much like going to the theater and hearing it read by gifted performers, especially Barrie Kreinik.  She is not only an actor, singer and award winning audio book narrator but also an acting teacher and dialect coach.  Each of her fellow narrators is equally well qualified.

    Author Kostova bgan traveling to Bulgaria to do research just after college - she arrived the week the Berlin Wall fell.  It was there that she met the man she would marry.  Actually, she fell in love twice - with her future husband and with a country she considered battered but beautiful.  Her passion for Bulgaria is evident in her work.

    With The Shadow Land the year is 2008 and 26-year-old Alexandra Boyd has left her home in the Blue Ridge Mountains to teach English in Bulgaria.  For her this is a coveted opportunity.  Unfortunately her cabdriver has mistakenly delivered her to a pricey hotel rather than the hostel where she is booked.  As she is in the process of locating another cab she helps an older couple and the attractive man with them into their cab.  In the confusion of cabs she finds that she has one of their satchels.  Inside to her surprise she finds an urn containing the ashes of a man called Stoyan Lazarov.

    Bobby, her English speaking cab driver, reluctantly agrees to take her to the police station where the officer on duty locates an address where they might find the dead man's family.  So, the two set off to find Lazarov's relatives.  As they follow first one lead and then another they learn of the dead man's life - during World War II, the Cold War Era and how his career as a violinist was destroyed when he spent time in a debilitating prison camp.
    Danger threatens when they realize they are being followed by someone who plainly doesn't want some information revealed.  What could it possibly be?


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