William Lyon's past forced him to become someone he isn't. Conflicted and unable to maintain the charade, he separates from his wife and takes a job as caretaker at a former mental hospital. Jelley's Valley State Insane Asylum was the largest mental hospital in California for well over a century, but it now stands empty. William thinks the decrepit institution is the perfect place to finish his dissertation and wait for his divorce to become final. In town, William meets Colby Anderson, who minds the local store and post office. Unlike William, Colby is cute, upbeat, and flamboyantly out. Although initially put off by Colby's mannerisms, William comes to value their new friendship, and even accepts Colby's offer to ease him into the world of gay sex.
William's self-image begins to change when he discovers a tin box, hidden in an asylum wall since the 1940s. It contains letters secretly written by Bill, a patient who was sent to the asylum for being homosexual. The letters hit close to home, and William comes to care about Bill and his fate. With Colby's help, he hopes the words written 70 years ago will give him courage to be his true self.
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Absolutely amazing, both story and narration.....
I would have to say that both this and Brute (yet to start Rattlesnake) are in my top 5 audio books. The Tin Box probably ranks no. 1. Full of emotion, and when William reads Billy's letters to his lover, I bawled...and you could hear the narrator's quavering voice too. Kc was definitely affected by the sadness of the letters content.
I loved Colby.
Oh yes, I've listened to several of Kc's narrations...especially The Knight of Laguna Avenue by Tara Lain, which is another brilliant characterisation.
It was, but it was impossible. I needed a break from the overwhelming emotions this story conveys.
A beautiful, beautiful story. You'd be mad to miss it....and be prepared to have tissues handy, you'll need them unless you've got a heart made of stone.
Wow! Such a beautiful, moving story.
- Lily G Blunt