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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

4.6 (2620 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Beatrice Berk 01-29-16

    Beatrice Berk

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Must Listen"
    What made the experience of listening to A Tree Grows in Brooklyn the most enjoyable?

    Kate Burton's voice is enchanting, and matches the story beautifully.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    All of the characters are amazing.


    Have you listened to any of Kate Burton’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    No.


    If you could rename A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, what would you call it?

    I have no idea. It's a perfect title.


    Any additional comments?

    Great classic.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kathy Bedford, TX, United States 01-20-16
    Kathy Bedford, TX, United States 01-20-16 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A great find"

    Molly Manning's book, When Books Went to War, mentioned this book several times so I had to find out what was so great that soldiers clamored to read it while spending time in a cold, wet foxhole. What a surprise. This book is well written, the characters are rich and full, sometimes its funny and sometimes way past sad but it always left me wondering what would happen next. The story is a lot like Angela's Ashes but I think its better

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Doris Velez 11-17-15
    Doris Velez 11-17-15
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    3
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    "Jukebox in Manhattan"

    As Francie found solace in her tree, I found joy in the music of the neighborhood jukebox. I listened from across the street, on my fire escape to the music of the time, and it transported me from the poverty of a crowded railroad apartment to a place where my heart could sing!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Courtney Marlowe 11-10-15 Member Since 2016
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    16
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    "don't wait to listen to this book!"

    I adored this story and only regret I waited until adulthood to read it. Each character is worth knowing and many will leave footprints in your heart and mind.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kristi Nash 10-21-15
    Kristi Nash 10-21-15
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    "Classic book. Didn't want it to end."
    Would you consider the audio edition of A Tree Grows in Brooklyn to be better than the print version?

    Hard to say... I read the book many years ago and truly enjoyed it (in fact, I've kept it not wanting to pass it on to library donation as I love it so much). But when I listened this time, I heard parts that I didn't remember so it was truly enjoyable.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The entire thing.


    Any additional comments?

    A must for every one!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Donzeleigh Coatesville, PA United States 10-15-15
    Donzeleigh Coatesville, PA United States 10-15-15
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    "Why do these Brooklynites have bad Bostonian accents?"

    The story is a classic for a reason. The narrator's regular speaking voice is pleasant but she uses an annoying accent for the dialogue. It makes me dread parts of the book with dialogue to the point where I wish I were reading the book instead of listening to it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Anonymous 09-21-15
    Anonymous 09-21-15 Member Since 2016
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    4
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    "Loved it!"

    I felt like Francie herself was telling the story. I was sad when it was over and may listen to this one again and again.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Pmick 08-17-15
    Pmick 08-17-15
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    "A great classic"

    I am glad that I waited all these years to finally read this book. Had I read it as a child, the wonderful message and language might have been lost on me. But I know I would have enjoyed it all the same.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jill 07-14-15
    Jill 07-14-15 Member Since 2014
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    "My new favorite book!"

    I don't know what took me so long to read this critically acclaimed novel. I am 40 and I have loved to read since I was old enough to scribble what was supposed to be my name on my first library card. I'm not sure this book wasn't brought into my life until now, but I am so grateful and plan to start it over again immediately!!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Susan 07-02-15
    Susan 07-02-15 Member Since 2013

    A hopeless book lover

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "I listen to this book at least once a year!"
    Would you consider the audio edition of A Tree Grows in Brooklyn to be better than the print version?

    Love both but the audio version more. The narrator brings everything to life for me.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of A Tree Grows in Brooklyn?

    When Katie talks to Francie about romantic love, first as a mother, then as a woman. A very powerful moment indeed.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    Too many but getting flowers from her father when she graduated brought me to tears.


    Any additional comments?

    I read this book as a young girl and many times since. I always come away with something more. A truly wonderful book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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