• audiobook

From the Publisher

Following Bridge of Sighs-a national best seller hailed by The Boston Globe as "an astounding achievement" and "a masterpiece"-Richard Russo gives us the story of a marriage, and of all the other ties that bind, from parents and in-laws to children and the promises of youth.

Griffin has been tooling around for nearly a year with his father's ashes in the trunk, but his mother is very much alive and not shy about calling on his cell phone. She does so as he drives down to Cape Cod, where he and his wife, Joy, will celebrate the marriage of their daughter Laura's best friend. For Griffin this is akin to driving into the past, since he took his childhood summer vacations here, his parents' respite from the hated Midwest. And the Cape is where he and Joy honeymooned, in the course of which they drafted the Great Truro Accord, a plan for their lives together that's now thirty years old and has largely come true. He'd left screenwriting and Los Angeles behind for the sort of New England college his snobby academic parents had always aspired to in vain; they'd moved into an old house full of character; and they'd started a family. Check, check and check.

But be careful what you pray for, especially if you manage to achieve it. By the end of this perfectly lovely weekend, the past has so thoroughly swamped the present that the future suddenly hangs in the balance. And when, a year later, a far more important wedding takes place, their beloved Laura's, on the coast of Maine, Griffin's chauffeuring two urns of ashes as he contends once more with Joy and her large, unruly family, and both he and she have brought dates along. How in the world could this have happened?

That Old Cape Magic is a novel of deep introspection and every family feeling imaginable, with a middle-aged man confronting his parents and their failed marriage, his own troubled one, his daughter's new life and, finally, what it was he thought he wanted and what in fact he has. The storytelling is flawless throughout, moments of great comedy and even hilarity alternating with others of rueful understanding and heart-stopping sadness, and its ending is at once surprising, uplifting and unlike anything this Pulitzer Prize winner has ever written.


From the Hardcover edition.
Published: Random House Audio on
ISBN: 9780739318935
Unabridged
Listen on Scribd mobile: iPhone, iPad and Android.
Availability for That Old Cape Magic: A Novel
With a 30 day free trial you can listen to one free audiobook per month

    Related Articles

    TIME
    1 min read

    Crimes of the Heart

    S.B. Like many of his novels, Spanish author Javier Marías’ new book, Thus Bad Begins, isn’t exactly a mystery, though it is mysterious. Here, the 65-year-old perennial Nobel favorite tells the story of Juan de Vere, a young man working for a film director, Eduardo Muriel. The older man assigns his apprentice the task of finding out a secret about a longtime friend. Meanwhile, de Vere is intrigued by the cold relationship between Muriel and his depressed wife Beatriz—at some point in their past, she did something unforgivable, also a secret, and de Vere wants to find out what. Marías (The In
    TIME
    2 min read

    Four Roads Diverge in a Wood

    SARAH BEGLEY CERTAIN BOOKS LEAVE READERS FEELING THEY KNOW EVERY MINUTE detail of a character’s inner life, as if they were lifelong companions and daily confidants. Paul Auster’s massive new novel, 4 3 2 1, is such a book. The concept behind the 866-page tome boils down to one life, lived four ways. By the end of the first chapter a boy named Archie Ferguson has been born to a New Jersey couple in 1947. Subsequent chapters cycle through four versions of how his life plays out: he grows up in different New Jersey towns, attends different schools and embarks on different adventures and misadv
    TIME
    2 min read

    When Less Plot Is Actually More

    AFTER WRITING SEVEN NOVELS AND three works of nonfiction, acclaimed British author Rachel Cusk began to find fiction “fake and embarrassing.” Two years ago, she explained to a British newspaper, “Once you have suffered sufficiently, the idea of making up John and Jane and having them do things together seems utterly ridiculous.” No surprise, then, that her 2014 novel Outline was anything but plot-driven. It was more like a series of observations by a narrator as she traveled to Greece to teach writing. The people she met along the way essentially became the subjects of miniature profiles craf