The Sparrow

Written by:
Mary Doria Russell
Narrated by:
David Colacci

Unabridged Audiobook

Release Date
April 2008
15 hours 21 minutes
A visionary work that combines speculative fiction with deep philosophical inquiry, The Sparrow tells the story of a charismatic Jesuit priest and linguist, Emilio Sandoz, who leads a scientific mission entrusted with a profound task: to make first contact with intelligent extraterrestrial life. The mission begins in faith, hope, and beauty, but a series of small misunderstandings brings it to a catastrophic end.

Praise for The Sparrow

“A startling, engrossing, and moral work of fiction.”—The New York Times Book Review

“Important novels leave deep cracks in our beliefs, our prejudices, and our blinders. The Sparrow is one of them.”—Entertainment Weekly

“Powerful . . . The Sparrow tackles a difficult subject with grace and intelligence.”—San Francisco Chronicle

“Provocative, challenging . . . recalls both Arthur C. Clarke and H. G. Wells, with a dash of Ray Bradbury for good measure.”—The Dallas Morning News

“[Mary Doria] Russell shows herself to be a skillful storyteller who subtly and expertly builds suspense.”—USA Today
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Jessica E.

Story and narration is brilliant! I’ve been a full-cast narration snob so far but, loving the book so much when I read it, I decided to listen again before approaching the sequel. David Colacci is an outstanding match for Mary Doria Russell’s storytelling. **App team note!: for unknown reasons the pace of narration speeds up significantly at the point of 3.5-3 hours remaining. I checked, but had not accidentally increased the speed on my own. It is certainly a surprising change in the experience of the end of the novel and made an impact on my enjoyment

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Erik P

Exceptional story, and exceptional narration!

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Sam Feigenbaum

Often times a book is only as good as its narration. +5 Stars, both accounts.

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Kate Garland

I cannot recommend this book enough to sci-fi theology types. An inquiring mind is thoroughly invested start to finish. "Not even the smallest sparrow falls without your father knowing of it.... but the sparrow still falls" The only words I needed to hear to get my hands on this book! I loved the narrator, though there were a few chunks where it sounded like he was sped up? I found this frustrating because I couldn't make the audio be any slower than 1x and it still seemed fast. But the majority of the book is perfect and I could still understand those chunks

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Elizabeth Seto

Brilliantly told story of first contact with extraterrestrial culture. A wrenching experience of what it is to be human, to love deeply, and to try to find meaning in unbearable spiritual suffering. Set in the near future, intellectually fulfilling and challenging, this book is a treasure in the true sense of the word.

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Katie C.

This one really surprised me. This isn't a novel I would have reached for, primarily because of the religion. But, it was recommended and I came across the title many times. I almost gave up on reading it after the first couple of chapters but I'm glad I stuck to it. I'm genuinely surprised at how much I enjoyed it. It's beautifully and eloquently written. The characters are well thought out and three dimensional. The author makes you feel like the characters are people you know in your life, they feel like friends and family. They are believable and even though you learn their fate very early in the novel, I still couldn't help getting attached to them. Emilio is an amazing character and I felt his humor and companionship during the novel and I felt his pain and anguish at the end. The Sparrow has a significant meaning and I'd recommend everyone read it.

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John D.

I’m 5 hours into book and no idea what the story is about. No sci fi elements, all religion and a terribly confusing writing style. Total waste of $15 dollars.

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