Autumn is seeping into the leaves on the trees and the fog that envelops my morning commute. Last month, as I wended my way along an island highway in the Pacific Northwest, I listened to Robin Alexander’s The Fall, narrated by the perfectly cast Lisa Cordileone. It’s a romantic comedy featuring a multi-generational cast. The Fall is a lot of fun and a satisfying romance, as well. I highly recommend getting comfy with this audiobook and a hot beverage. Add a little wood smoke and it’s perfection
Noel Savino is a dentist with a large, boisterous Italian-American family. After being burned in relationships, she’s just fine with casual encounters. Sunny Chase, new to town, is hesitant to begin a relationship. Upon hearing that Noel is a love-’em-and-leave-’em type, she decides to play it cool and keep it physical. No strings. No demands. Despite instant attraction on both sides, the two women assume that a non-relationship is what the other wants. The other story line features Harper, Noel’s niece, and Lydia, Sunny’s daughter. They navigate high school, new friendship, and sexuality. As the younger pair, Harper and Lydia deal more with the angst and confusion surrounding complex friendship and sexuality.
Along the way they receive solicited and unsolicited advice from their respective families. The Fall has great cast of supporting characters, such as Sunny’s uncle Ethan (a semi-retired hairdresser with energy to power a solar system) and Noel’s parents, Inez and Joe. Cordileone’s vivid characterization of Ethan highlights his tendency towards dramatics, while also presenting his thoughtful moments with softer tones. One of the narration challenges was vocalizing the mish-mash of New Jersey and Baton Rouge, Louisiana among the characters. As soon as she read that description of the accents, I paid closer attention to how she handled the voices of Inez’s and Joe’s adult children. Noel and her siblings grew up with parents who spoke with Jersey accents and with the Baton Rouge accents of their community. It was an interesting vocal blend that ultimately works. The audiobook was an immersive experience because Cordileone brought the characters to life through expert pacing, tone, accents, and wonderful energy.
You can learn more about the author, narrator, and where to purchase a copy of this audiobook via the links below.