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Publisher's Summary

In his much-anticipated debut novel, Hank Green - cocreator of Crash Course, Vlogbrothers and SciShow - spins a sweeping, cinematic tale about a young woman who becomes an overnight celebrity before realising she's part of something bigger, and stranger, than anyone could have possibly imagined. 

The Carls just appeared. Coming home from work at three a.m., 23-year-old April May stumbles across a giant sculpture. Delighted by its appearance and craftsmanship - like a 10-foot-tall Transformer wearing a suit of samurai armor - April and her friend Andy make a video with it, which Andy uploads to YouTube. The next day April wakes up to a viral video and a new life. 

News quickly spreads that there are Carls in dozens of cities around the world - everywhere from Beijing to Buenos Aires - and April, as their first documentarian, finds herself at the centre of an intense international media spotlight. Now April has to deal with the pressure on her relationships, her identity, and her safety that this new position brings, all while being on the front lines of the quest to find out not just what the Carls are but what they want from us. 

Compulsively entertaining and powerfully relevant, An Absolutely Remarkable Thing grapples with big themes, including how the social Internet is changing fame, rhetoric and radicalisation; how our culture deals with fear and uncertainty; and how vilification and adoration spring from the same dehumanisation that follows a life in the public eye. 

©2018 Hank Green (P)2018 Orion Publishing Group

What listeners say about An Absolutely Remarkable Thing

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had me hooked!

Badass female lead, aliens, thought-provoking themes, and its all written by Hank Green. What more could you want?!

2 people found this helpful

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Couldn’t stop listening

This is such a great book to listen to. I finished it almost in one go. Wickedly imaginative and captivating story so different to regular sci fi. Loved it 100% and already on second book.

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Absolutely remarkable storytelling.

I loved every part of this book. Truly unique, wonderful, contemporary. Cannot recommend more highly

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An Absolutely Remakable Book and Audio book

Everything from the writing of Hank Green to the brilliant voice acting of Kristen Sieh had me feeling encapsulated by the story at hand. The way it sparked thought on topics such as politics, social medias effect on people, the human flaws we tend to forget when judging peoples of fame all amongst a strange alien occurrence makes me want more. So good, I enjoyed it because it made me excited, interested, anxious, mad, frustrated, and happy just made it so worth it.

I also cannot stress the brilliant work of Kristen Sieh as she brought the characters to life without missing a beat. She was the best person to play April May and I will definitely come back to this audio book to fall asleep to or engage with the story again.

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great mystery, character's hard to like

Wanted to first say that Kristen Sieh does an excellent job at bringing the story to life.
the book is ok. the ideas presented kept me reading. there's a great mystery here with the carls. it's part science fiction, part critique on social media and fame culture. But! I did find the characters here really difficult to like. I found them too wround up with their current problems & I find it difficult how they could continue in any sequel.

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An absolutely remarkable journey

It's been awhile since I've read a novel, and I feel absolutely spoilt to have this be my return to reading (or listening).

An Absolutely Remarkable Thing is on one hand a book about a young adult caught up in modern social media, with a sci-fi twist. But on the other hand is a beautiful telling of what it is to be human, it has all the pieces at all the right times, I felt all the things, I genuinely believe those feelings will continue to grow and shape my perspective for years to come, a feeling I haven't felt in a long time.

The performance by Kristen is amazing. As much as I appreciate Hank, I don't know that anyone could've done a better job than Kristen for this role, beautiful range, and she hit all the emotional notes just right. You know when you watch a movie based on a book and the characters don't look like what they did in your head? Kristen did the opposite. Her voice and her reading meshed so well with April's character. Stunning.

Hank, well done, what an awesome first book, I'm so excited to listen to the sequel. Thank you for an absolutely remarkable journey.

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A wonderful modern allegory

An excellent read and very poignant, even prescient, of events since its authorship. The framing is soft-sci-fi but the focus, as with the best of the Sci-Fi genre, is profoundly the characters' humanity (think Gravity, Interstellar etc). Yes, a strange statue appears in 64 countries, and the mystery of it drives the events, but the story is of a young woman struggling to know who she is and her place in the world, all while coming to grips with being thrust into fame.

It was not a fast-moving book, but it was compelling and hard to put down.

Anyone who liked films like Gravity, Interstellar, and perhaps especially, Arrival, will find the book enticing. Am looking forward to starting the 2nd book!

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Absolutely not what I was expecting...

but nevertheless, very enjoyable. I look forward to listening to the second one. downloading now!

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I'm just glad there's already a sequel

Great story. Funny and thought provoking all at once. Just glad there's already a sequel, because it ends in a really open way.

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Sci-fi without being too sci-fi

The story was engaging, keeping me interested in each chapter. As for the performance, Kristen Sieh was amazing. Loved how Hank Green narrated as one of the characters at the end. Can't wait for the sequel.

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  • Arrow
  • 04-10-2018

Wow!

Holy shitballs Hank! You should be so proud. This was an amazing story and it was told so well. Kudos.

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  • Signe Lemhagen
  • 15-10-2018

If you wanna have a good time (just give me a Carl?)

Holy shitballs! Sorry, I just finished reading and am still a bit caught up in the story. It’s a really exiting, can’t-put-it-down kind of book.
What I like most about it however is that it is the kind of art that helps you (or at least helped me) to think about and interact with complicated and heavy subjects. I’m glad so many people will read it because I’m gonna need to find someone to talk with about it all. It feels like a important book in how It could not have been written in any other time than now. Not just because of technology, but because of the challenges specific to our time.
And I liked the characters.
Glad I read it.

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  • Susanne
  • 25-09-2018

DFTBA!

If you liked Sleeping Giants you're gonna love this book. It's entertaining and a great read

2 people found this helpful

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  • Siena Lopdell
  • 31-08-2021

So so so good

Wonderful story, only improved by its reading by Kristen and Hank. Jumping right into the sequel.

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  • Nicky
  • 05-08-2021

Absolutely Remarkable!

This is my second time through the book and it was every bit as captivating as the first time. I’ve got through it in just a few days, which is crazy for me, but I could not put it down (metaphorically). Well and truly my favourite book. Thank you Hank for this amazing book

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  • Denise
  • 28-02-2021

It's not about what it's about

So you'd better read it or listen to it to find discover the truth for yourself.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Seán Hannan
  • 07-03-2020

Read it, then listened to it, then listened again.

Loved it. Keenly anticipating the sequel, A Beautifully Foolish Endeavor.
Hank does story better than John. John writes character better.

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  • Yaakov Gorensteyn
  • 29-01-2020

Good book, well read.

I enjoyed Hank's writing, probably more than his brother's even. Nice sci-fi book, can't wait for the sequel.

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  • Andy
  • 25-11-2019

My poor heart

This book came as a balm to me. I have a twitter account where my opinions are weapons to toss at people with the wrong ones. It’s easy to forget that we’re all just trying to get by. Thanks to April May and the Carls, maybe I’ll be able to remember more often. This is hope punk.

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  • nechemiah s.
  • 31-10-2019

this was an excellent story, recommend it

I absolutely love the story, great plot, great performance, great writing, an excellent ending.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 10-10-2018

I love it

I love it sooo much. I don't know you but I want you to listen to it and love it too because that is what this book has inspired in me. Now I am going to listen to it again.

11 people found this helpful

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  • izzy
  • 29-10-2018

Hank freaking Green how have you done this to me??

I've so rarely felt so intrigued, called out, baffled, angry, comforted, and understood all at once as I did while reading this book. It truly is an absolutely remarkable thing (sorry).
Even through the voice of April, it felt like I could hear so much of Hank in there, perhaps because it felt so real it seemed as though it had to be an actual human person speaking to me. either way it was a fantastic listen and good company on long train rides.
Thank you.

7 people found this helpful

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  • Liam McDonald
  • 29-09-2018

Amazing debut book

I loved this book. It has great pacing that keeps you "turning the pages" from start to finish.

7 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 24-02-2019

Amazing!!

I avoided this book for a while, I know of hank green and I know that he is internet famous. I know that he could get a publishing deal, and that people would buy his book regardless of how good the content was. So it didn’t feel credible. I was so wrong. This book was fantastic, I finished it in just a few days. I stayed up until 3am to listen to the last 4 hours of it. The story line is brilliant, so entertaining and with great plot twist. The way the book is written lets you know there’s more surprises to come, and keeps you anticipating. There was no point in the book I felt bored with the story or at a stale point. Every bit felt interesting and important and as if it was building towards something bigger. With a book that built so much anticipation I was worried the ending would let me down. It didn’t. I really hope Hank continues this story.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 29-12-2019

I don’t like sci-fi... but I love this book

My wife suggested I read this, and a year later I still hadn’t gathered the strength to open the first edition hard back we had on the bookshelf, so thought I’d see if it was available on audible. And it was. From the moment I hit play I was hooked. Initially thinking it could be a traffic entertainer, expecting it to take a few weeks to claw through, I found myself sitting outside our flat listening, not wanting to escape the next line of words. Wanting to know what happens. (Guess my wife is indeed, always right).

Narrated with the most accessible and emotive American accent I’ve heard in a while, this really is something you’re going to want to listen to without stopping.

So, the story. I bought this without really knowing what it was about. Just that my wife wanted to discuss the ending and therefore I needed to read it. I usually avoid anything sci-fi, as it’s just not my thing. But the complex tones around fame, social media, humanity, politics - you just totally overlook the fact ‘aliens’ are in any way part of the plot. Mostly because they’re a string, as opposed to a protagonist.

This is well worth a listen. And I’m grateful to know the next book is out in summer 2020, as now I know why my wife wanted to discuss the ending!

No spoilers. Listen. And you’ll know what she means.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Guildford Chris
  • 07-12-2018

Brilliant!

Both enjoyable and thought provoking. This is a well written and compelling story that shines a light on humanity to reveal the full spectrum of qualities that make us what we are.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 05-11-2018

amazing!

i could hardly put it down! an AMAZING mystery that had me hooked from the start

3 people found this helpful

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  • Leah Caffrey
  • 08-02-2019

easy listening but still interesting

narrator was great, storyline was really interesting, just sometimes felt like a 'young' book with some of the vocab
ending was brilliant though

2 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 14-12-2018

I just loved it, guys

Wow. Best read in a long time. Thrilling, touching, thought provoking- absolutely remarkable, I guess.

2 people found this helpful

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  • L. Stephenson
  • 09-11-2018

Fantastic

A truly remarkably well written and performed story of first contact in this moment today. It feels true and vital in ways these types of stories rarely do. I can’t wait for the next book in the series!

2 people found this helpful

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