Bellwether
Connie Willis

Book cover image

Narrated By: Kate Reading

Duration: 6 hours and 31 minutes

What to expect

Pop culture, chaos theory, and matters of the heart collide in this unique novella from the Hugo and Nebula Award–winning author of Doomsday Book.

Sandra Foster studies fads—from Barbie dolls to the grunge look—how they start and what they mean, for the HiTek corporation. Bennett O’Reilly studies monkey-group behavior and chaos theory for the same company. When the two are thrust together due to a misdelivered package and a run of seemingly bad luck, they find a joint project in a flock of sheep. What better animal to study both chaos theory and the herd mentality that so often characterizes human behavior? Unfortunately, Sandra and Bennett must endure a series of setbacks, heartbreaks, dead ends, and disasters before they are able to find answers to their questions—with the unintended help of the errant, forgetful, and careless office assistant Flip.

Genre

Science fiction

Listen to a sample

“Connie Willis deploys the apparatus of science fiction to illuminate character and relationships, and her writing is fresh, subtle, and deeply moving.”

New York Times Book Review

“Willis’ story builds slowly but is realistic and engrossing.”

Midwest Book Review

“Reading, an experienced science fiction narrator, has a knack for making even the most otherworldly and bizarre stories sound entirely plausible and real. Reading’s delivery is smooth and unwavering yet weighted with a certain uneasiness that abounds in the central character of Sandra Foster. As Flip, the annoying yet helpful sidekick, Reading becomes a distracted, disorganized individual, yet one with underplayed redeeming qualities that inadvertently save the day.”

AudioFile

“The versatile Kate Reading skillfully renders Sandra’s first-person voice throughout, does well with audibly differentiating the various characters from one another, and especially shines when it comes to Flip’s ‘Valley Girl’ drawl. Bellwether is an amusing diversion for anyone who has ever wondered how fads get started and how they spread.”