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Summary

Brought to you by Penguin. 

Three extraordinary lives intertwine across oceans and time.

On the banks of the River Seine in 1899, a young woman takes her final breath before plunging into the icy water. Although she does not know it, her decision will set in motion an astonishing chain of events. It will lead to 1950s Norway, where a grieving toy-maker is on the cusp of a transformative invention, all the way to present-day Canada where a journalist, battling a terrible disease, risks everything for one last chance to live.

Taking inspiration from a remarkable true story, Coming Up for Air is a bold, richly imagined novel about the transcendent power of storytelling and the immeasurable impact of every human life.

©2020 Sarah Leipciger (P)2020 Penguin Audio

What listeners say about Coming Up for Air

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A hidden gem

A clever clever piece of storytelling! I’m of French origin and of course knew of l’inconnue de la Seine story including the absence of any details on the real young woman which led to her legend being created over the years. I have only praise that particular chosen imagined version of her story, as plausible as any other. I admire the way the three storylines come together.
I am very surprised that this book has not become more well known. It is beautifully written, the melancholic style suits the narratives and helps cope with the hard to listen to sections which come up on several occasions. I did wonder at times if those were maybe gratuitous but decided that probably not. It feels like the author is very respectful of her subjects and her readers. I enjoyed the voices of the chosen narrators and their reading style except the unnecessary insertion of quite bad French accents for only some of the French characters, was it to remind us of where we were???
Anyway, a great listen and I hope this becomes more well known as a book in its own right before Netflix or other get hold of it and can claim the fame!!!

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Gloomy

I couldn't finish this. I got bogged down in the gloom of it all and when I started to skip forward I knew I had given up hope. Very high quality of writing though but just not for me.

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A wonderful, unusual story.

I loved this, with water weaving it’s way through all three of the characters stories, I finished it in super quick time as I felt immersed with them. An unusual and fascinating book.