A Long Way Home: A Memoir

Books on Tape. Nov. 2023. 7:09 hrs. ISBN 9780593861998. $66.50. MEMOIR
Narrator Vidish Athavale offers an engaging presentation of Brierley’s 2014 internationally released debut, upon which the 2016 movie Lion was based. When he was just five years old, Brierley boarded the wrong train in India and became lost. He survived for weeks living on the streets of Kolkata, where he eventually was taken in by a foster agency and adopted by a white Australian family. Though he had a happy childhood in Tasmania, he never forgot his birth family or his desire to see them again. Incredibly, he used Google Earth to painstakingly find his way home again many years later. Athavale brings the harrowing journey to life with palpable urgency, blooming into joy as he describes his reunification with his family. While Brierley’s story is compelling, the writing style is somewhat flat and repetitive; the audiobook, however, offers a more fluid and immersive listening experience.
VERDICT An uplifting story of resilience and one young man’s determined search for the family he lost long ago. Recommended for listeners who enjoyed Nicole Chung’s All You Can Ever Know or Jenny Heijun Wills’s Older Sister, Not Necessarily Related.
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