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A Tree Grows in Brooklyn Audiobook

A Tree Grows in Brooklyn

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Audible Editor Reviews

Why You Should Download This Audiobook: Betty Smith's immensely moving novel is essentially a paean to the human spirit—among most uplifting works we can think of. It's one of those stories you delight in giving to a good friend or family member who might be facing difficulty, certain that it could change the way they perceive life or give them strength to overcome a problem. It's also worth mentioning that this novel is a refreshing, plainspoken American work, a welcome change of pace if you've been lately persuing dense or complex works of literature.

Publisher's Summary

A moving coming-of-age story set in the 1900s, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn follows the lives of 11-year-old Francie Nolan, her younger brother Neely, and their parents, Irish immigrants who have settled in the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn. Johnny Nolan is as loving and fanciful as they come, but he is also often drunk and out of work, unable to find his place in the land of opportunity. His wife Katie scrubs floors to put food on the table and clothes on her children's backs, instilling in them the values of being practical and planning ahead.

When Johnny dies, leaving Katie pregnant, Francie, smart, pensive and hoping for something better, cannot believe that life can carry on as before. But with her own determination, and that of her mother behind her, Francie is able to move toward the future of her dreams, completing her education and heading off to college, always carrying the beloved Brooklyn of her childhood in her heart.

©1947 Betty Smith; (P)2001 HarperCollins Publishers, Inc.

What the Critics Say

"There's a reason this tale remains beloved after almost 50 years, and it stands with memoirs like Angela's Ashes for its happy-ending triumph over a bad childhood." (AudioFile)
"A profoundly moving novel, and an honest and a true one. It cuts right to the heart of life." (The New York Times)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.5 (2059 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Jennifer Mckinney Austin TX 04-12-15
    Jennifer Mckinney Austin TX 04-12-15 Member Since 2014
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    "A Tree Grows In Brooklyn by Betty Smith"
    What made the experience of listening to A Tree Grows in Brooklyn the most enjoyable?

    The story of Francie Nolan and her family was a great one by Betty Smith.


    What did you like best about this story?

    A Tree Grows In Brooklyn by Betty Smith takes a certain kind of narrator if on Audible.com and this one pulled it off and pulled me in with every character's voice and story.


    What does Kate Burton bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Kate Burton did an an amazing job with Betty Smith's work! If I just read the book alone, I probably would have put it down and not finished it.


    Any additional comments?

    I highly recommend this book to anyone who's never read it before as I had not. Yes, it is long but completely worth it. Happy listening!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jennifer Maria Nunez 04-07-15 Member Since 2013
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    4
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    "A Perfect Book."

    The story is so simple, but almost every sentence is like poetry. It's poignant and moving, and the narration was excellent. I didn't want it to end.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Henry Farmington Hills, MI, USA 03-26-15
    Henry Farmington Hills, MI, USA 03-26-15 Member Since 2006
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Enjoyable"

    A classic. Excellently performed. I had long wanted to read this book and was not disappointed. An insight into immigrant life in early 20th century America.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ken Greensboro, Georgia 03-23-15
    Ken Greensboro, Georgia 03-23-15 Member Since 2010
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    "A great "coming of age" book set in early 20th cen"

    A great book with wonderful messages about family values, work ethics, and a mothers love and commitment to ensure a better life for her children.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    K Raleigh, NC, USA 03-23-15
    K Raleigh, NC, USA 03-23-15 Member Since 2014
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    5
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    "Old classic"

    This story about immigrant families in the early 1900's was a refreshing read. Nothing spell binding about it, but this book was uplifting.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jalapenodave 03-12-15 Member Since 2016
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    "suddenly jazz"
    Any additional comments?

    Great Story! Solid Performance. There is Jazz music punctuating the audio book. It is a misfortune as it only detracts from the experience. Some one please edit it out!!!!!!!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Aaron 03-10-15
    Aaron 03-10-15 Member Since 2012
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    "Great book with a strong female character."

    This is a fantastic book. Loved listening to this. The reader did an amazing job with her accents. Slow paced drama.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    L 03-08-15
    L 03-08-15
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Loved as a teen, but even more as an adult"

    This is of the rare books that had a big impact on me as a young person and did not diminish as I grew older. I have re-listened to this audiobook, just as I reread it as a kid, and enjoyed it each time. When I read this in eight grade I *was* Francie Nolan. Now I see the richness of the story from the adults' point of view--especially her mother, Katie.

    This is a book that will stay with you. The characters are wonderfully drawn and the story lurches along in the same somewhat haphazard way real life does. This is not a great novel from the aspect of plotting, but one that is great because you care tremendously for the characters, flaws and all.

    Kate Burton's measured narration is perfect for this novel. She does not overdo the accents and her voice has exactly the right amount of introspection. Although it's set in pre WWI Brooklyn -- which is a pulsing character itself-- the story is fresh and relatable, made more so by the telling.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Margcol WEST PALM BEACH, FL, US 03-07-15
    Margcol WEST PALM BEACH, FL, US 03-07-15 Member Since 2014
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    "The best!"

    Wonderful story that takes you back in time. Allowed me to understand the times of my parents growing up and I was able to better understand my father's stories of his childhood. Listened 3 times repeatedly... It is that good!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    M. Ryder 03-02-15
    M. Ryder 03-02-15 Member Since 2015
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    "Expected more"

    Story was okay but not what I had hoped for did not like narrator seemed like story was a bit too long













    Story was okay but thought narrator was not

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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