I adore audiobooks, and REMARKABLY BRIGHT CREATURES, narrated by Marin Ireland and Michael Urie, is a gem. From the moment I put in my earbuds and hit play, I was transported into this enchanting, unique story with a touch of the mystical.

Michael Urie does an incredible job of bringing the sardonic and rather wise Marcellus to life. Marcellus, a giant Pacific octopus, has spent most of his short life alone in captivity, observing the inferior species called humans and taking nighttime jaunts to search for food. But when he gets trapped outside his tank, the older woman who cleans the Sowell Bay Aquarium—and talks to the inmates—comes to his rescue.

It’s as unexpected as the friendship that follows.

Widow Tova Sullivan doesn’t need to work; she needs to stay busy. Her small group of friends can’t understand why she’s taken on a menial night job at their age. Did her husband leave her destitute? Rebuffing their concerns, Tova doesn’t share that she talks to an octopus, nor that she envies her friends their kids and grandkids.

Thirty years earlier she and her husband lost their son, their only child, to the sea. The official explanation never made sense, and in the absence of a body, Tova continues to wonder what really happened. Neither the grief nor the memories ever leave.

Marcellus and Tova, both stubborn, opinionated, and lonely, struggle with imminent old age. Even though they lack common language, they find mutual respect and enjoy each other’s company.

One night, Marcellus realizes he has information about her son’s death and decides to solve the mystery—as a gift to his friend. But can he communicate what he’s learned before their time together runs out?

With a handful of other flawed characters, Marcellus and Tova create a feel-good novel of heartbreaking truths, healing in darkness, and hope for an unexpected future.

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