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The Women: A Novel | [T. C. Boyle]

The Women: A Novel

Told through the experiences of the four women who loved him, this imaginative account of Frank Lloyd Wright's raucous life blazes with Boyle's trademark wit and invention. Boyle's protean voice captures these very different women and, in doing so, creates a masterful ode to the creative life in all its complexity and grandeur.
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Publisher's Summary

Frank Lloyd Wright's life was one long, howling struggle against the bonds of convention, whether aesthetic, social, moral, or romantic. He never did what was expected, and he never let anything get in the way of his larger-than-life appetites and visions.

Told through the experiences of the four women who loved him, this imaginative account of Wright's raucous life blazes with Boyle's trademark wit and invention. Boyle's protean voice captures these very different women and, in doing so, creates a masterful ode to the creative life in all its complexity and grandeur.

©2009 T. Coraghessan Boyle; (P)2009 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

What the Critics Say

"America's most imaginative contemporary novelist." (Newsweek)

"One of the most inventive and verbally exuberant writers of his generation." (New York Times)

“The author is a master storyteller who takes literary license but never loses sight of his subject's humanity. Narrator Grover Gardner has a deep nasal tone that, remarkably, sounds like an old radio broadcaster's voice. This fits the mood of the book perfectly since the story takes place in the 1930s.” (AudioFile)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.5 (268 )
5 star
 (53)
4 star
 (99)
3 star
 (63)
2 star
 (40)
1 star
 (13)
Overall
3.4 (107 )
5 star
 (24)
4 star
 (31)
3 star
 (28)
2 star
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1 star
 (8)
Story
3.7 (105 )
5 star
 (27)
4 star
 (39)
3 star
 (23)
2 star
 (14)
1 star
 (2)
Performance
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  •  
    C Chestnuthill, MA, United States 07-13-10
    C Chestnuthill, MA, United States 07-13-10 Member Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
    64
    ratings
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    211
    66
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    4
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    Overall
    "Too long"

    It is well written and narrated but should be cut down by a third and most of the women characters were so negative that it became a chore to listen to sometimes

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Cynthia Lake Linden , MI, USA 06-07-10
    Cynthia Lake Linden , MI, USA 06-07-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
    34
    ratings
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    Overall
    "interesting but a big time commitment"

    Wright's relationships with three women are described by a fictitious Japanese intern. It starts with last wife, then second wife and then mistress who dies a tragic death. His first wife and mother of six children is not part of this book. It's very interesting. Lots of insight into Wright's character and life as well as the women who try to make a life with someone of such importance (and narcissism). But I don't think the time commitment to listen to this whole book is worth it. Might be better enjoyed as a book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Carolyn APO, AE, United States 03-07-10
    Carolyn APO, AE, United States 03-07-10 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
    29
    ratings
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    44
    20
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    Overall
    "Informative"

    I found the book interesting but very very long. Some of the Women were more developed than the other characters. The narrator was good, but at times I found myself droning.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Anastasia Burke California 02-20-10
    Anastasia Burke California 02-20-10 Member Since 2007

    Say something about yourself!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    615
    ratings
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    139
    62
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    2
    Overall
    "Hated the characters, which means good writing"

    It is a testament to Boyle's ability to breathe fictional life into these true-life characters--and that I despised one of them so. Like Diane, from VA, I really struggled through the middle section. Miriam Wright was, without a doubt, a detestable, self-centered, sadistic, mentally unstable, and narcissistic woman. Reading aout her attacks on Wright's last misstress was very difficult.

    Boyle brings her to such life that I was pretty much cringing throughout her section. I kept thinking, "How could such a brilliant guy get so manipulated?" Then again, all of Wright's own narcissism and ego is on brilliant display.

    Not an easy book to read, but, as with all Boyle's work, an accomplishment. If you like your literature on the soft side, don't brave this one. If you are into well-written prose and intricatly depicted (but unpleasant) characters, then go for this one!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Paula Plainfield, IL, USA 05-27-09
    Paula Plainfield, IL, USA 05-27-09 Member Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
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    1
    1
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    0
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    Overall
    "Not worth the journey"

    The problem with this book is that there was really only one interesting thing that happened relative to Wright's love life, and you have to wade through the tedium of the rest of the book to get to it. SO not worth the journey to get there.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Adele Sacramento, CA, United States 03-30-09
    Adele Sacramento, CA, United States 03-30-09
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
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    4
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    Overall
    "Two women too many"

    Some inspired prose and shallow characters. When the narrator of the tale is telling his own story and his relationship to "Right-O-San," the novel was sometimes compelling. But what an insult to the ears that the reader didn't bother to attempt the rhythms and cadences of the Japanese language--especially since he was SUPPOSED TO BE JAPANESE. Truly grating to the ears and easily rectified by 10 minutes coaching before recording.

    The women became caricatures and if I heard one more "Well, I deserved it, didn't I?" from the characters.... Suffice it to say, two or three hours less of this book would have been ample.

    2 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Aaron St. Louis, MO, United States 03-13-09
    Aaron St. Louis, MO, United States 03-13-09 Member Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
    83
    ratings
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    150
    32
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    Overall
    "Too Long"

    Too long, too repetitive to wait for the OUTSTANDINGLY climatic ending.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Corina Jerusalem, Israel 04-12-09
    Corina Jerusalem, Israel 04-12-09 Member Since 2007

    Corina

    HELPFUL VOTES
    18
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    27
    5
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    Overall
    "Great writer, great narrator"

    A wonderful listening experience.

    1 of 4 people found this review helpful
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