Hard times come upon Wang Lung and his family when flood and drought force them to seek work in the city. The working people riot, breaking into the homes of the rich and forcing them to flee. When Wang Lung shows mercy to one noble and is rewarded, he begins to rise in the world, even as the House of Hwang falls.
©1958 Pearl S. Buck; (P)2007 Blackstone Audio Inc.
"A beautiful, beautiful book. At last we read, in the pages of a novel, of the real people of China." (Saturday Review)
"The Good Earth has style, power, coherence and a pervasive sense of dramatic reality." (New York Times Book Review)
"To read this story of Wang Lung is to be slowly and deeply purified; and when the last page is finished it is as if some significant part of one's own days were over." (Bookman)
Actually I didn't notice the performance so it must have been perfect. I love the book in print also. I've both read and listened multiple times.
54 yrs, ,memb 12yrs,library -75%nonfic 10% fiction,15% classics. History, all sciences, bio, classics,diverse other interests.
I read this some time ago now- but I can still remember how captivating it was for me. It stuck to the background of my mind for a long long time= like all great reads do.
The story is set on a farm near a small village in china in the 18th or 19th cent . A farmer experiences all the challenges of family and of depending on the land in an unforgiving and unforgettable time and place .
The author's ability to completely transport and immerse you in this fascinating foreignes makes reading it feel like time travel. The story lines universal themes take on an interesting duality experienced in the context of this very unique culture as compared to our own.. I've been reading a lot of Steinbeck lately and I find Bucks writing reminds me very much of Steinbeck's. Simple, sparse, and even seems to have a similar rhythm= and like Steinbeck she manages to convey the stories personalities and atmosphere with such depth , fulness and character, it belies the seeming simplicity of the writing. It's like magic. The narration is fine- Anthony Heald does the book justice.
I enjoyed this book so much-It was sad to end it. It was so rewarding in so many ways,and on so many levels. I've yet to read the other 2 books in this trilogy. When I got this title the other 2 were not available on audible. Writing this review has rekindled my fancy, I'll have to get the other 2 now Jeez ! So many books so little time.
This book and it's author deserve all the awards and accolades bestowed on them. HIGHLY- RECOMMENDED
Let Him Teach You
This is a great classic. I have read it three times, once each in English, Portuguese and Spanish. The story moves along at nice pace and describes the lives of both peasant and wealthy Chinese just before the Communist party starting making inroads into China. I could read this story five more times and get something new out of it each time.
Nevertheless, since The Good Earth is such a celebrated classic, I would prefer to comment on the reader Anthony Heald.
I have been listening to recorded books for nearly forty years. In all that time, I have heard readers who captivated my attention, even when the material was not interesting, and readers whose skill was so lacking that they ruined good books.
Anthony Heald sets the standard of good reading. The inflections in his voice, the modulation, the precise pauses, the emotion, the range of voices according to character, etc. all work in concert to make Anthony Heald the most outstanding reader I have ever had the pleasure to listen to. So very well is his rendition of The Good Earth that I could not begin to imagine another reader doing better. I repeat: Anthony Heald sets the standard to which others need aspire.
I have avoided some audiobooks based on their readers, but I have never purchased audio books based on their readers. Now I shall. I want to listen to other works Anthony Heald has recorded. If he repeats the skill he demonstrated in recording The Good Earth, I will be pleased.
I just searched other books Anthony Heald has recorded. I can't wait to purchase a few more.
poor, determined, rich
When O-lan goes to the fields to help Wang Lung. Him seeing her as a help mate.
I liked the way he would articulate different people. Allowing me to know who was talking.
It made me sad to be placed in each characters position. Knowing how O-lan felt when Wang Lung saw her ugliness for the first time. For drought, rain, famine, and family that would suck the life out of anyone, but Wang Lung stood strong and learned to manage his money.
Pearl Buck is one great writer. I have had her books in my collection for years and unable to read it because of time restrictions. Now with Audiobooks, I can listen as well read and enjoy my books as I travel.
I would recommend this book. Very easy listen, but very introspective. It made me look deep into human nature, child rearing, and self contentment. Very good book though.
I first read The Good Earth when I was in elementary school and I still have that book in my bookcase. I've read it numerous times and since I wanted to listen to a book that I was familiar with, I picked this one.
Anthony Heald did an outstanding job on this book. He actually sounded Asian while he was narrating, and he felt the parts instead of just reading them. I never knew this was a trilogy until now and I downloaded the next book Sons, but it just isn't the same. It's narrated by someone else and it sounds flat and dull.
As someone who loved this book most of my life, I highly recommend this audible version of The Good Earth. You won't be sorry!
Downtown Dallas Resident, IT Professional, born in Montana and raised in Saudi Arabia. Like books about the world, political and social movements and changes, interested in how people think and how philosophies and belief systems have changed and evolved.
It is in my second tier of books that I have listened to, since I thought the narrator was a little weak in his voicing of female characters.
"Memoirs of a Geisha" because both books carefully detail another time and place with complexity and sympathy for the important and difficult roles that women play.
My favorite characters was the main character, and the narrator did a good job with him.
No. It is more sweeping epic than gripping can't put it down thriller and so lent itself to listening over a course of days.
Yes, many of the names are difficult to pronounce. Listening to this book allows one not to get hung up on pronunciation. The narrator added much more depth to the story.
O-Lan was such a strong female character. I was amazed that she gave birth independently, once in a field. What woman gives birth one day and is out doing hard manual labor the next day? Her strength and knowledge were not highlighted due to the views of women during this time but she played a large role in Wang Lung's success.
It was satisfying to see the success of Wang Lung living the dream. If you work hard you will be rewarded. His ability to know that land was such an important commodity during this time in history. I did struggle with the Chinese view of woman though. At times I was so angry with Wang Lung in the way that he treated his wife. My views of him changed with his treatment of his daughter and his wife when she was dying.
The Good Earth ranks a a five star rating. It is as good a read s it was when I first read it in the 1950's.Timeless, It will continue to be a great read. This audio book adds a new dimension so that is becomes a five star listen.
There was no favorite for me. Each had its own place in telling of the story as it unfolded. Many do not even have names, but clearly stand out when they play a part.
Great reader. Held my attention never faultering.
The hero's first "woman" as she was referred to in the book. She needed more loving attention. He only realized that too late!
This book as a classic should be on the book shelf of every reader. The audio book adds a new dimesion to the literature and should have a special place beside the hard cover copy. Twinning them will make a wonderful reading afternoon.
This is wonderful book and the narrator is perfect! I read the book years ago and enjoyed listening to it now.
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