Haunted by the freak accident that killed their father when they were children, Jim and Bob Burgess escaped from their Maine hometown of Shirley Falls for New York City as soon as they possibly could. Jim, a sleek, successful corporate lawyer, has belittled his bighearted brother their whole lives, and Bob, a Legal Aid attorney who idolizes Jim, has always taken it in stride. But their long-standing dynamic is upended when their sister, Susan - the Burgess sibling who stayed behind - urgently calls them home. Her lonely teenage son, Zach, has gotten himself into a world of trouble, and Susan desperately needs their help. And so the Burgess brothers return to the landscape of their childhood, where the long-buried tensions that have shaped and shadowed their relationship begin to surface in unexpected ways that will change them forever.
With a rare combination of brilliant storytelling, exquisite prose, and remarkable insight into character, Elizabeth Strout has brought to life two deeply human protagonists whose struggles and triumphs will resonate with listeners long after the ausiobook is over. Tender, tough-minded, loving, and deeply illuminating about the ties that bind us to family and home, The Burgess Boys is Elizabeth Strout’s newest and perhaps most astonishing work of literary art.
©2013 Elizabeth Strout (P)2013 Random House Audio
"Deeply human... Though loneliness and loss haunt these pages, Strout also supplies gentle humor and a nourishing dose of hope.” (Booklist)
I really enjoyed Elizabeth Strout's "Abide with Me." When I found THe Burgess Boys on Audible, read by Cassandra Campbell, I thought it would be a worthwhile read. I've gotten only 2hrs of the way through, and I... just... don't... care. Strout is a talented author, who can seamlessly weave together strands of everyday life and dialogue into her stories, but I don't like (or cannot relate to) any of the Burgess siblings: Bob is like a wounded puppy, Jim is a big pushy bully, and I just can't figure Susan out (who cares that her tenant stays in her pajamas all day?)
Many others have read this book and enjoyed it, but I just couldn't with this one. I still have Olive Kitteridge and Amy and Isabelle on my wishlist, so I ahve not given up on this author entirely... but this one just didn't do it for me.
Yes, and I already have.
When the woman was going to leave America and go home, the discussion of family values here in America and what she wants to return to, having family.
I did like it but she needs to re-record and learn the correct pronunciations of Orono and Bangor. Here in Maine we put the emphasis on first syllable of both city names. The way she pronounced Orono was particularly wrong. Why don't narrators do some research about place names??? This really bothered me.
As I said before, the discussion about family values in America vs. those of some other countries. Also, how the Burgess family became more of a family then ever before in many years.
No, just this author
It only became interesting at around chapter eight, but it was short lived.
I enjoyed Olive Kitteridge, so I thought why not listen to another of Strout's books but this book was so boring I just wanted it to be over. Everything in the story was predictable.
it was fine
so much it is hard to say
Sorry, I just did not think the writing was very good. Best of luck with a new book
A great story but didn't always keep me engrossed. Not sure why. The performance was good, so it must be the writing. Sorry, Elizabeth Burgess, i know you're a successful writer. I just wasn't all that engaged throughout.
I cannot tell if I would have liked the story had the narration been better. Some of her voices were okay, but it was dull, especially in-between the dialogue. I cannot put my finger on it - the voice was nice, but it was just so slow and kind of depressing. I am having a really hard time getting through it and probably will not finish it.
This beautiful story, not just about the Burgess Boys, Bob and Jim, but their sad sister Susan, unravels with a slow, drawling fascination. Prefaced by another character entirely, who then silently haunts the book, building this story into myth, this novel entangled me and I was gutted when it was over.
Elizabeth Strout writes novels you live in for a while. You can walk around her towns and city blocks, you have the opportunity to inhabit any one of a number of psychologically rich characters. Her characters are flawed - racist, angry, sad, blinded by privilege or burdened with lack - and yet you forgive all of them ultimately because it is lonely and confusing to be human, connected and disconnected simultaneously to those around you, and to the things you live with.
Highly recommended. I also enjoyed the audiobook of Strout's Abide With Me.
I am a miracle worker. Doing what I can to choose love over fear.
I liked the moments when the author created magic with sentences and a plot turning from fiction to an almost suspense pain. I do not enjoy abridged books, but it was too much time and not even Yates could have made this sometimes painfully slow story into a five-star experience.
I`d turn the three divided books into one then made it 150 pages shorter. More magic!
kirby Heyborne as Zack, Peter Krause as Bob, Matt Dillon as Bill and Lauren Graham as the sad Susan.
could be perfect.
I read this novel after David Sedaris recommended another book by this author. The story is intricate and a portrait of the difficulties in every family. I just kept waiting for the big bombshell and it never came. Interesting enough to pass the time but not a favorite.
I thought Olive Kitteridge was as a master work, but I found The Burgess Boys even more compelling. The reader is brilliant and perfectly captures the Maine-ness that is such an essential element of this thought provoking and thoroughly enjoyable novel.
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