The Doldrums by Nicholas Gannon | Audiobook Review

I received this book for free from Library, Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

The Doldrums by Nicholas Gannon | Audiobook ReviewThe Doldrums by Nicholas Gannon
Series: The Doldrums #1
Narrator: Bronson Pinchot
Length: 6 Hours 19 Minutes
Published by HarperCollins on September 29th 2015
Genres: Young Adult, Social Themes, Friendship, Family, Humorous Stories
Pages: 368
Format: Audiobook, Hardcover
Source: Library, Publisher
Buy on Amazon
ISBN: 9780062320964

“A dreamy charmer of a book, full of clever wordplay that practically demands it be read out loud.”—New York Times
Have you ever wanted to hold a little piece of the impossible? Lavishly illustrated in full color, The Doldrums is an extraordinary debut about friendship, imagination, and the yearning for adventure from author-artist Nicholas Gannon. A modern classic in the making, The Doldrums is for readers of inventive and timeless authors such as Brian Selznick and Lemony Snicket.
Archer B. Helmsley wants an adventure. No, he needs an adventure. His grandparents were famous explorers . . . until they got stuck on an iceberg. Now Archer’s mother barely lets him out of the house. As if that would stop a true Helmsley. Archer enlists Adelaide—the girl who, according to rumor, lost her leg to a crocodile—and Oliver—the boy next door—to help him rescue his grandparents. The Doldrums whisks us off on an adventure full of sly humor, incredible detail, and enormous heart.
With approximately twenty pieces of breathtaking full-color artwork, as well as black-and-white spot illustrations, and gorgeous, literary writing, Nicholas Gannon proves himself to be a distinctive new voice with his middle grade debut. Be in it for the limitless imagination. For the characters who capture your heart. For the rich world you’ll want to settle into. But most of all, be in it for the friendship. That, after all, is the true adventure.

Why Did I Listen To The Doldrums by Nicholas Gannon?

The Doldrums by Nicholas Gannon is a book that looks to be very tactile. I mean, the physical copy has some pretty neat pencil drawings, newspaper clippings, and some full color pictures. Visually, it looked like such a neat book. However, my time is kind of very limited as is my space. Thus, seeing the audiobook of The Doldrums on Hoopla spurred me to download the audiobook. Plus, it has a very good narrator in Bronson Pinchot.

What’s The Story Here?

Nicholas Gannon’s The Doldrums is about a character named Archer B. Helmsley. Archer lives in his explorer grandparents’ house with his parents. His grandparents are currently missing – lost out in the great wide somewhere. This has lead to Archer’s mom being super overprotective. Archer, however, finds himself yearning for adventure. Archer has these two friends – Adelaide who has a wooden leg and Oliver who is detail oriented. The two come up with this excellent plan to get out of the house and get out of town. Will it work? Guess that remains to be seen.

What Did I Think Of The Doldrums?

To be fair, I did not really retain a whole lot of Nicholas Gannon’s book. I mean, I loved the concept. In addition, I also really enjoyed Adelaide’s character. However, much of this book is forgettable. There is not much about it that stands out from all the other books I have read and listened to. I wanted to like this book a lot more than I actually did. Yet, I can’t say I do not recommend this book. In fact, I think that it has the potential to do really well with middle grade readers – especially fans of The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place.

How’s The Narration?

So, Bronson Pinchot narrated The Doldrums. As expected, he is a relatively decent narrator. His voicing is impeccable. However, I just could not keep my attention on this book or focused. While I love audiobooks, I do think that you miss out if you are not looking at the physical book concurrently. There’s some great art within. I believe that I would have enjoyed this book more had I actually read the physical book instead of listened to it.

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About April (Books&Wine)

April is in her 30s and created Good Books And Good Wine. She works for a non-profit. April always has a book on hand. In her free time she can be found binge watching The Office with her husband and toddler, spending way too much time on Pinterest or exploring her neighborhood.


  1. Me and my son read this together and really liked it. It’s not really ABOUT that much, but maybe it was the atmosphere or the overall feel of the book that we liked?? Anyway, my 9 year-old did really like it.
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