One master-passion in the br east, like Aaron's serpent, swallows all the rest. A. Pope
"Man wonders but God decides
When to kill the Prince of Tides."
A verse from the eponymous poem by Savannah Wingo, the suicidal sister and renowned poet in Pat Conroy's The Prince of Tides, a novel of the Southern mentality, particularly of the region's male gender.
Through the first person account of Tom Wingo, Conroy tells the momentous story of a South Carolina coastal family in an attempt to save his sister's life (from despair and death), deeply exploring conflicts between and among family, steadfastness in beliefs, marital fidelity and the long lifetime serenade humans sing to and for amore'. How can human beings, so capable of love of friends, family and mates, also show the most savageness of any in the animal kingdom to our own species and to our environment (loyalties, locales, land and life), exposing the fragility of the most precious things?
Through the contrast between New York City and a fishing village on the Carolina coast, Conroy examines these issues in a self-reflective way that touches close to home.
Distinctly Southern and Superb.
This book is one I will remember for many years. Though there is much sadness, I was laughing out loud (this rarely happens to me) during some stories.
Say something about yourself!
I'm a Pat Conroy fan. I've read three of his other books, but I frequently confuse them because their setting and characters are very similar. I like Prince of Tides more because it was different. His first "breakout" book is definitely the best, in my opinion. I loved listening to it.
Everyone in the book talks about how crazy the family is. That kind of scares me because they didn't seem very crazy at all... eek. I've heard so much about the book and the movie over the years, so I'm glad no one had spoiled some of the "big" reveals.
Its a "good" book, its a spectacular audiobook. Frank Muller takes it to a whole 'nother level with his amazing performance. Its the best performed audio book I have ever heard, hands down. A good story is one thing, but a good story told by a master story teller is spellbinding.
When I read The Prince of Tides I was enchanted-the way the words of the story took on a life of their own captivated me. I loved, loved, loved this book, this story, the language, and I couldn't wait to see the film. I was not disappointed. The film, like the novel became a favorite. Frankly, I didn't think it could be improved upon. I was wrong. Listening to Frank Muller the story comes alive in ways it never did before, and the characters become individuals whose voices I automatically recognize as I listen. This is one I will probably listen to again and again just to hear the sheer beauty in the rhythm of the language.
The only down side is that I am reminded what a loss the death of Frank Muller is to the literary world. He was a genius; a master actor as he read, and I miss him.
In my estimation, those who listen to this audio book will be glad they did, and like me, will hate for the story of the Wingo family to end.
There is only one Pat Conroy and one Frank Muller. I am glad the two were united in this project.
This is my all-time favorite book. Coupled with my all-time favorite narrater, how could it be anything but a five-star experience.
I LOVE to listen to audiobooks - the Audible ap is by far the best thing that's ever happend to my iPhone.
The actual story has a good, solid delivery. I didn't see the movie - so I didn't have any preconceived ideas of the character's appearances or behaviors. The narration was descent. I'm not sure I would recommend this as a good use of a credit... but if you like a book that draws as many questions as it gives vague answers, then this will be right up your alley.
My questions for author -
Am I missing something? Was there more horrific abuse that happened that plagued the children into adulthood? Or was the message more of a family with a genetic disposition to depression and other mental illness?
If the story was about saving the sister from her own mental demons by exploring the root -her childhood distress - why did the book focus soley on the brother telling tales of his childhood memories? The tales were often endearing - and didn't itterate details that would warrant such mental decay? There was one night of tragedy - but the one child who suffered the most seemed to lead the most "normal" adult life.
I read "The Prince of Tides" years ago. I took it with me as my companion for flight when I went to Europe for the first time. I remember pausing after sentences and holding the book to my chest, after reading lines that were so poetic and thoughtful that I had to stop and feel my own soul intermingle with them. I have always considered it to be one of my favorite books. When I joined Audible I thought to myself, what book do you want to start with? It was an easy choice as I sifted through books that have made a spiritual impact on me. "Prince of Tides" must begin my library, I thought. And so it was. I am an artist; a painter and sculptor and I am deeply affected by the music I listen to while creating new things. Normally music is my muse but I decided to depart from that a couple days ago...a trial you see. I loaded Pat Conroy's words, spoken so eloquently by the late Frank Muller, into my iPod and worked on my sculpture. Such elegance flowing through me, causing me to blend them into the clay that met my fingers and onto the figure before me. I remembered again being on the airplane headed toward a new adventure, and holding the book close to me, relishing the poetry of it. Once again I felt its magic. What a lovely way to create. Another muse has been discovered, and so today I will listen to part two. How lovely.
Say something about yourself!
I first listened to this book about 25 years ago. Rented it from books on tape. I saw it on sale here on audible a while back and bought it for a reread. It was better than I remembered. Worth whatever you pay for it. A classic.
Without spoiling anything, when you buy this audiobook, you're getting two works of art-- a stunning novel by Pat Conroy, and one of the best audio book narration performances in the business by Frank Muller.
I listened to this story in a difficult time in my own life, and in the weeks i spent with Conroy and Muller, my life was filled with beauty and good ole fashion storytelling. Stuff like this is good for the soul. Mr. Conroy passed away while I was listening to this book--thank you for sharing this with us. I know I'll be revisiting the book very soon. Recommended!