We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves Lib/E (Library)

Karen Joy Fowler (Author) Orlagh Cassidy (Read by)
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Product Details

Blackstone Publishing
Publish Date
May 30, 2013
6.6 X 1.3 X 6.1 inches | 0.75 pounds
Compact Disc
BISAC Categories:

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About the Author

Well known in the mainstream for her New York Times bestseller, The Jane Austen Book Club, Karen Joy Fowler is a well-respected and considerable force in SF and Fantasy as well. She is a two-time winner of the Nebula and World Fantasy awards, and cofounder of the Tiptree Award, given for works dealing with the politics of sex and gender.

Orlagh Cassidy is the winner of the 2009 Best Voice in Children & Family Listening and the 2008 and 2011 Best Voice in Mystery & Suspense. She's narrated for Jacqueline Winspear, James Patterson, Erica Spindler, Beth Harbison, and Frank Herbert, among others.

Cassidy's Broadway credits include Present Laughter with Frank Langella, Our Country's Good, and Suddenly Last Summer. She has appeared Off-Broadway in Bright Ideas and The Field at The Irish Rep (Drama Desk Nomination). She was Doris Wolfe on The Guiding Light and her other television appearances include Sex and the City, Law & Order, Law and Order SVU, and Elementary. She also appeared in the films Purple Violets, Young Adult, and Definitely, Maybe.


We Are All Completely beside Ourselves is a dark cautionary tale hanging out, incognito-style, in what at first seems a traditional family narrative. It is anything but. This novel is deliciously jaunty in tone and disturbing in material. Karen Joy Fowler tells the story of how one animal-the animal of man-can simultaneously destroy and expand our notion of what is possible.

-- "Alice Sebold, New York Times bestselling author "

In this curious, wonderfully intelligent novel, Karen Joy Fowler brings to life a most unusual family. Wonderful Fern, wonderful Rosemary! Through them we feel what it means to be a human animal.

-- "Andrea Barrett, Pulitzer Prize winning author "

A novel so readably juicy and surreptitiously smart, it deserves all the attention it can get...[Its] fresh direction and madcap plot bend the tone toward comedy, but it never mislays its solemn raison d'etre. Monkeyshines aside, this is a story of Everyfamily.

-- "New York Times Book Review"

Unsettling, emotionally complex.

-- "Washington Post "

Fowler has given us the gift of a splendid novel. Not only is the story fascinating, moving, and beautifully written, but it also ripples with humor.

-- "Boston Globe "

The heart of the novel-and it has a big, warm, loudly beating heart throughout-is in its gradually pieced-together tale of family togetherness, disruption, and reconciliation. We Are All Completely beside Ourselves is Fowler at her best...Utterly captivating.

-- "Seattle Times "

By the time you get to the last section of the novel, which is absolutely sublime...you will feel as though Rosemary and Fern are your own siblings.

-- "NPR's All Things Considered "

Achingly memorable...This brave, bold, shattering novel reminds us what it means to be human, in the best and worst sense.

-- "Miami Herald "

Fowler's novel is superb.

-- "NPR's Fresh Air "

Rosemary's voice-vulnerable, angry, shockingly honest-is so compelling and the cast of characters, including Fern, irresistible. A fantastic novel: technically and intellectually complex, while emotionally gripping.

-- "Kirkus Reviews (starred review) "

Piquant humor, refulgent language, a canny plot rooted in real-life experiences, an irresistible narrator, threshing insights, and tender emotions-Fowler has outdone herself in this deeply inquisitive, cage-rattling novel.

-- "Booklist (starred review) "

Rosemary's experience [is] a fascinating basis for insight into memory, the mind, and human development...Fowler's great accomplishment is not just that she takes the standard story of a family and makes it larger, but that the new space she's created demands exploration.

-- "Publishers Weekly"

Karen Joy Fowler has written the book she's always had in her to write. With all the quiet strangeness of her amazing Sarah Canary, and all the breezy wit and skill of her beloved Jane Austen Book Club, and a new, urgent gravity, she has told the story of an American family...This is a strong, deep, sweet novel.

-- "Ursula K. Le Guin, award-winning author of Lavinia "

It's been years since I've felt so passionate about a book. When I finished at three a.m., I wept, then I woke up the next morning, reread the ending, and cried all over again.

-- "Ruth Ozeki, award-winning author of All Over Creation "

You know how people say something is incredible or unbelievable when they mean it's excellent? Well, Karen Joy Fowler's new book is excellent: utterly believable and completely credible-a funny, moving, entertaining novel that is also an important and unblinking review of a shameful chapter in the history of science.

-- "Dr. Mary Doria Russell, biological anthropologist and author of The Sparrow and Doc "

This unforgettable novel is a dark and beautiful journey into the heart of a family, an exploration of the meanings of memory, a study of what it means to be 'human.' In the end the book doesn't just break your heart; it takes your heart and won't give it back.

-- "Dan Chaon, author of Await Your Reply and Stay Awake "

It really is impossible to do justice here in a blurb. This is a funny, stingingly smart, and heartbreaking book. Among other things, it's about love, family, loss, and secrets; the acquisition and the loss of language. It's also about two sisters, Rosemary and Fern, who are unlike any other sisters you've ever met before.

-- "Kelly Link, author of Stranger Things Happen and Pretty Monsters"