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The Days of Anna Madrigal: A Novel (Tales of the City) | [Armistead Maupin]

The Days of Anna Madrigal: A Novel (Tales of the City)

Suspenseful, comic, and profoundly moving, the latest novel in Armistead Maupin's Tales of the City series follows one of modern literature's most beloved and indelible characters - Anna Madrigal, the transgender landlady of 28 Barbary Lane - as she embarks on a road trip that will take her deep into her complicated past. Now ninety-two, and committed to the notion of "leaving like a lady," Mrs. Madrigal has seemingly found peace with her "logical family" in San Francisco: her devoted young caretaker, Jake Greenleaf; her former tenant Brian Hawkins and his daughter, Shawna; and Michael Tolliver and Mary Ann Singleton, who have known and loved Anna for nearly four decades.
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Publisher's Summary

Suspenseful, comic, and profoundly moving, the latest novel in Armistead Maupin's Tales of the City series follows one of modern literature's most beloved and indelible characters - Anna Madrigal, the transgender landlady of 28 Barbary Lane - as she embarks on a road trip that will take her deep into her complicated past.

Now ninety-two, and committed to the notion of "leaving like a lady," Mrs. Madrigal has seemingly found peace with her "logical family" in San Francisco: her devoted young caretaker, Jake Greenleaf; her former tenant Brian Hawkins and his daughter, Shawna; and Michael Tolliver and Mary Ann Singleton, who have known and loved Anna for nearly four decades.

Some members of Anna's family are bound for the otherworldly landscape of Burning Man, the art community in Nevada's Black Rock Desert where sixty thousand revelers gather to construct a city designed to last only one week. Anna herself has another Nevada destination in mind: a lonely stretch of road outside of Winnemucca where the 16-year-old boy she once was ran away from the whorehouse he called home. With Brian and his beat-up RV, she journeys into the dusty, troubled heart of her Depression-era childhood to unearth a lifetime of secrets and dreams, and to attend to unfinished business she has long avoided.

The ninth and final audiobook in Armistead Maupin's classic Tales of the City series, The Days of Anna Madrigal is the triumphant resolution to a saga of urban family life that has enchanted and enlightened listeners around the world since 1976.

©2014 Literary Bent, LLC (P)2014 HarperCollinsPublishers

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.1 (151 )
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4.2 (138 )
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  •  
    Cliffie Rural, VT 02-15-14
    Cliffie Rural, VT 02-15-14 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Narrator is a huge mistake"

    I'm a long time fan of Maupin and the Tales of the City family. But this narrator is a terrible blunder. Everyone comes across as vulgar and not very bright. Mrs. Madrigal, in particular, has none of her dry wit and dignity, but other characterizations are just as bad. The voice is so jarring that it's hard to really judge the quality of the story. The author is the perfect narrator of his own work, and in this possibly last book, we should have had the gift of his own voice. If you love the series, buy the book itself instead of the recording.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Todd Longview, Texas, United States 02-22-14
    Todd Longview, Texas, United States 02-22-14 Member Since 2012
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    "Farewell Ms Madrigal"
    Where does The Days of Anna Madrigal rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    All good things must come to an end and Armistead Maupin has done a beautiful job with this "Tales" bittersweet finale.


    Would you be willing to try another one of Kate Mulgrew’s performances?

    The one downside to this book was the narrator. I will be ordering the print version of this book just to read it without having to listen to her voice.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    The last chapter (and specifically the last 5 minutes) made me a little misty-eyed.


    Any additional comments?

    I am anxiously awaiting the next book from Maupin.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Keith Springfield, MO, United States 01-26-14
    Keith Springfield, MO, United States 01-26-14 Member Since 2007
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    "A Life In Review"

    This book, the latest in the Tales of the City series, is a trip down memory lane for its primary character -- Anna Madrigal. I have lived with these characters since I first began reading the series at the insistence of my lover in 1995. It didn't take long to fall in love with the residents of 28 Barabary Lane and all of the crazy connections and puzzle pieces as they plunked into place one at a time. Although they have all moved out and moved on, their friendship has withstood the test of time.

    In this adventure, Anna Madrigal is reaching the end. She is 92 years old and is unable to walk easily by herself. Throughout the book, we learn many of the secrets of her life. She goes back to the Blue Moon Lodge in her mind and we learn how, in 1936, she left and never returned.

    The familiar characters are here as well. Many of them play mere supporting roles, weaving in and out of the narrative to keep the story moving along.

    Stories from the entire series are sprinkled around... It's not necessary to have read the rest of the series to appreciate them, but if you have, you will be thrown back to those events in your mind and will experience them all with a sense of nostalgia for the past. My favorite is Micheal's remembrance of dressing as Pan... It reminds me of old friends sitting around talking about the past.

    I won't give any details away since that is half the fun of an Armistead Maupin novel, but suffice it to say that it was a satisfying installment in the TOtC series. Will there be others? Who knows? I hope so. Was this a final installment? If so, it is a beautifully written end to a wonderful series.

    As far as Kate Mulgrew's narration goes, I can't imagine anyone (other than AM himself) being able to do a better job. She understands each of the characters and gives them a dialect here or a deeper voice there. Her narration made this a very enjoyable listen.

    I recommend this title to any and all fans of the TOtC series.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Annabel Jacksonville Florida 03-12-14
    Annabel Jacksonville Florida 03-12-14

    Leading a busy life, Audible has let me reunite with my passion for literature.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "The Best Book I've Downloaded So Far"
    Would you consider the audio edition of The Days of Anna Madrigal to be better than the print version?

    This is, without doubt, the best title I have bought so far. Everything about this performance - from the story, to the pace, to the narration - is PERFECT! I bought it not knowing that it was the 9th book in a series, and it was still easily understood. I am going back now though, and reading them all. WELL-DONE!


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Anna....you agree with me, I promise.


    What about Kate Mulgrew’s performance did you like?

    Stunning. I could not put this one away. I sincerely wish that she would narrate every title on here. There are many characters in this story, and she embodied each one, and gave them spirit that is truly memorable.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    Many. But I'd hate to point them out and ruin the surprise.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Erika Martin 12-02-14
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    "I miss Armistead Maupin's voice"
    What made the experience of listening to The Days of Anna Madrigal the most enjoyable?

    Excellent last book, but I miss Armistead's voice.
    The whole series is like following a family of friends through the past thirty years. A wonderful account of a part of American history.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Marianna Victoria, British Columbia, Canada 10-12-14
    Marianna Victoria, British Columbia, Canada 10-12-14 Member Since 2012
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    "Not quite what I expected"
    What did you like best about The Days of Anna Madrigal? What did you like least?

    I have read/listened to all the Armistead Maupin books and liked them all but this one I felt went over the top with foul language. Perhaps people really do talk like that but it seems excessive and got to the point where I didn't want to continue the story. I did finish it, ultimately.


    What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

    Anna's journey.


    What about Kate Mulgrew’s performance did you like?

    I thought it was well read


    If this book were a movie would you go see it?

    No


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ann Brooklyn, NY, United States 02-15-14
    Ann Brooklyn, NY, United States 02-15-14 Member Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Another good story from Armistead"
    Would you try another book from Armistead Maupin and/or Kate Mulgrew?

    I really enjoyed this series by Armistead Maupin. I would read another novel by him.


    What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

    If you followed all of the characters over their life times, they are all equally wonderful. However, this title did not quite stand as tall as the rest of the stories in the series.


    Would you listen to another book narrated by Kate Mulgrew?

    She was very good.


    Could you see The Days of Anna Madrigal being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

    The rest of the series came to TV, so why not this one. I loved Olympia D. In the role of Anna Madrigal. I could see, Shirley MacLaine or Julie Newmar.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-7 of 7 results
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  • Ken
    4/20/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Read the book"
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    This is a difficult book to listen to due to the narrator. With so many characters and much of the book being dialogue it is virtually impossible to differentiate between who's supposed to be talking.


    What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

    It's great to catch up with the Tales of the City characters, although this seems to lack some of the intertwining magic of some of the other books


    What didn’t you like about Kate Mulgrew’s performance?

    I think Kate is perfectly cast as Anna, and even the narrator. But she can't do voices, so there needed to be a couple of other actors recording other roles to help understand what's going on!


    Any additional comments?

    As an audiobook with various performers this would have been ideal, but with one reader who can't do accents or voices it was so monotonous that I stopped half way through and got the book

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Louise
    Scalloway, United Kingdom
    6/22/14
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    "Last hoorah from my old friends from Barbary Lane"
    What made the experience of listening to The Days of Anna Madrigal the most enjoyable?

    It is very hard not to come at this review without impressing my love and many years entanglement with all Maupin's Tales books. I probably can't stand outside it and tell you how it reads as a first timer. You simply have to start at the beginning with Tales of the City and you will see what I mean.
    My experience of reading is that I was meeting old friends and discovering secrets that have been kept buried for years.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Anna Madrigal - the landlady of all Tales Fan's souls


    Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Maupin is writing of beloved characters that he has been writing about for many many years, you cannot help but see how invested he is in his main characters and they are very real.


    Any additional comments?

    I have read all Armistead Maupin's Tales books set in the 70s/80s which tell the story of the lives and loves of friends living in San Francisco. I was so pleased when he began writing books set in the present. I believe "The Last Days.." is the last of the series. I will truly miss these people, they have become old friends!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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