The best way to experience this classic of the American South is by joining five-time Academy Award nominee and Best Actress winner Susan Sarandon (Dead Man Walking, Thelma & Louise) as she guides the listener on a journey through the anguish of adolescence and isolation.
"Rarely has emotional turbulence been so delicately conveyed," said The New York Times of Carson McCullers' sensitive portrayal of Frankie Addams, a disconnected 12-year-old whose only friends are her family’s maid and a six-year-old cousin. Desperate to be part of something big, she takes an overlarge interest in her brother’s wedding and dreams of following the couple on their honeymoon to the Alaskan wilderness. But as Frankie crosses into adulthood, she experiences the fantasy-shattering disillusionment that must come with it. This is a story for anybody who’s ever felt like an outsider and a natural fit for Ms. Sarandon, a master at creating authentic, sympathetic characters.
The Member of the Wedding is part of Audible’s A-List Collection, featuring the world’s most celebrated actors narrating distinguished works of literature that each star had a hand in selecting. For more great books performed by Hollywood’s finest, click here.
©1946 Carson McCullers (P)2012 Audible, Inc.
"Sarandon uses her voice well to convey all the emotions of a troubled girl who is searching for a place to belong." (Audiofile)
Short, Simple, No Spoilers
Yes. Read this book in college and all of Carson McCullers' books. She writes haunting prose and creates real, raw characters who pull you into their loneliness. Susan Sarandon was a great choice (although I didn't care for her Bernice voice). I can't help but laugh at those who wrote it was slow and boring. It's a beautifully written work of art with myriad layers. It's obviously not for your typical beach reader. I enjoyed this book for the third time and it was a great way for my 13 year old to "read" a classic. Highly recommend. Would give anything to write as well as McCullers.
Frankie's painful maturation, John Henry's innocence, and Bernice's wisdom
It's such a simple scene, but I like when when Frankie gives in and collapses on Bernice after dinner, before she goes back to town. You know she's not ready to let go and the compassion and realization is told so simply and beautifuly in that moment with few words. Breaks my heart and makes me want to hug my Mom and never let go.
The end of the story always makes me shed a tear for the loss of innocence.
I enjoyed it. I think the audio version is the better choice.
There aren't very many characters in this story. Frankie is the main character and the most interesting, most fleshed-out.
I really like her voice and her southern drawl.
This has long been a favorite book of mine and since I have read it several times, it probably would not have been one I would have downloaded but I so love Susan Sarandon I could not resist. She did not disappoint and did a wonderful job speaking in the mind of young Frankie Adams. I would certainly recommend this title to anyone.
I'm constantly listening to recorded books. Right now I'm a bit sick and weak, but can still enjoy a good listen. I'm so glad I have this resource available.
No. It was good, but this 60-something listener only needs to hear it once.
I enjoyed the interaction of the characters who were very likeable and the interesting storyline.
What a treat to hear that wonderful voice reading this classic. She gives the main character all the spunk that McCullers created and she pulls our emotions into the story to care about what happens to the girl. (Okay, it takes a few minutes to forget the sultry actress, but she soon does make you hear the girl.)
The richness of this book commonly referred to as a "coming of age novel" is that it is about so much more than sex. In fact, it is about the experience of loss, loss of dreams, of naive acceptance and of people, which, I believe, matures us far more radically than lust or even love. Central to the plot is the girl's belief that she will be leaving her small community with her brother and his wife right after the wedding. This fantasy colors all her experiences and touches the listener's heart.
I purchased this book thinking that I would really enjoy it since Susan Sarandon was reading it. I was disappointed. I did not feel that she brought the characters to life, and since I recognized her voice throughout, it even took away from the experience.
This is one of the best combinations of story and performance I have heard. Southern suduction is sooooo slow to develop it seems like a story told on the porch on a hot summer day when even cold lemonade only cools the storyteller, but doesn't speed up the telling.
When we find out the difference between the member of the wedding's wish and reality and the consiquences of that truth.
You can't fix the characters anymore than they can fix each other. Though they do try.
Get comfortable, keep listening.
I like Susan Sarandon as an actress, but she simply isn't very good here. She reads awkwardly. Sentences tumble out as if she had never seen one before. Is this lack of preparation? Lack of direction? Compared to Cherry Jones astonishingly nuanced and vivid reading of The Heart is a Lonely Hunter, this is almost a complete loss--and, sadly, there's not likely to be another audio version of this novel anytime soon.
I have only just begun but I already know this is a special special book. And Susan Sarandon is a gift. I don't want to go to work. I just want to sit here and listen.
I have read the book at least four times, written reports on it, and mentioned it with several interviewers who have asked about my personal favorites. Susan Sarandon lends it an entirely new dimension.
Frankie [F. Jasmine] Adams is truly one of the most indelible characters in modern literature. Susan somehow becomes a 12-year-old girl when she's reading Frankie's dialogue.
Any scene with Berenice, John Henry, and Frankie together talking about dreams, hopes, and expectations.
A lonely girl learns how to become 'the we of me'.
This is one of Susan Sarandon's great performances in any medium. It gave me six hours of pure pleasure. I love this new series by great actors. Next for me is 'The Sheltering Sky.'
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