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Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil | [John Berendt]

Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil

Genteel society ladies who compare notes on their husbands' suicides. A hilariously foul-mouthed black drag queen. A voodoo priestess who works her roots in the graveyard at midnight. A prominent antiques dealer who hangs a Nazi flag from his window to disrupt the shooting of a movie. And a redneck gigolo whose conquests describe him as a "walking streak of sex".
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Publisher's Summary

Genteel society ladies who compare notes on their husbands' suicides. A hilariously foul-mouthed black drag queen. A voodoo priestess who works her roots in the graveyard at midnight. A prominent antiques dealer who hangs a Nazi flag from his window to disrupt the shooting of a movie. And a redneck gigolo whose conquests describe him as a "walking streak of sex". These are some of the real residents of Savannah, Georgia, a city whose eccentric mores are unerringly observed, and whose dirty linen is gleefully aired, in this utterly irresistible audio. At once a true-crime murder story and a hugely entertaining and deliciously perverse travelogue, Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil is as bracing and intoxicating as half-a-dozen mint juleps.

©1994 by John Berendt; (P)1995 by Random House Audio Publishing, Inc., All Rights Reserved Under International and Pan-American Copyright Conventions, Reproduced by Arrangement with Random House Audio Publishing, Inc.

What the Critics Say

"Uproarious...a rich, irresistible mix of snobbery, mayhem, sex, mind-boggling parochialism, and mildewed magnolias....A glorious vanity fair of human folly." (The Boston Globe)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (997 )
5 star
 (477)
4 star
 (295)
3 star
 (156)
2 star
 (42)
1 star
 (27)
Overall
4.2 (538 )
5 star
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4 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Story
4.4 (537 )
5 star
 (324)
4 star
 (129)
3 star
 (55)
2 star
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1 star
 (13)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Joey Chicago, IL, United States 12-14-06
    Joey Chicago, IL, United States 12-14-06
    HELPFUL VOTES
    157
    ratings
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    58
    37
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    Overall
    "A little slow, but entertaining"

    The author did an excellent job of interweaving the storylines of the characters in the book. It is also a beautiful verbal picture of Savannah. I found parts of the story to be a little slow-paced, but not boring... it had the effect of being calming. It matched the slow-paced life in Savannah very well.

    30 of 31 people found this review helpful
  •  
    looking for great reads Southwest NM USA 10-02-09
    looking for great reads Southwest NM USA 10-02-09
    HELPFUL VOTES
    16
    ratings
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    21
    10
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    Overall
    "Beyond the movie, great book, perfect narrator"

    This book was perfectly read by Jeff Woodman, whose voice was reminiscent of the narrator/main character in the movie version (John Cusack). The movie started about 2/3 of the way into the story, was great to finally hear the whole TRUE story. Listened to this all the way on a driving trip to Michigan and the miles flew by, enjoyed every bit.

    11 of 11 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Heidi Napa, CA, United States 07-11-10
    Heidi Napa, CA, United States 07-11-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
    112
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    26
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    5
    Overall
    "LOVED IT!!!"

    I read this book when it came out in the 90's and loved it. Recently while planning a vacation to Savannah, I decided to listen to it again. I forgot how good it is, the characters, the humor, the stories, and side plots. What a wonderful combination to round out a nice thriller and mystery. Even if you read it 15 years ago, I recommend revisiting it. I consume at least 4 books a month, and rarely do I laugh out loud while listening to a book.

    This is based on a true story, although the author was not there when Williams killed Hansford, but he does explain the circumstances of writing himself as the only fictional character (until he catches up with himself after the murder) in the interview that takes place after the book.

    If you like humor and intrigue nicely wrapped up in a GREAT story, this is a wonderful book.

    I highly recommend it!!!






    10 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mon San Francisco, Ca 08-14-12
    Mon San Francisco, Ca 08-14-12

    12 step program please. I am addicted to Audible! I love trashy sexy books, award winning novels and everything between. Bring it!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    181
    ratings
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    286
    109
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    38
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    Performance
    Story
    "Loved, Loved, Loved this Audio"
    What made the experience of listening to Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil the most enjoyable?

    The real life characters are interesting, dysfunctional, charming and totally seductive. I can''t believe that this is non fiction. I was also so impressed by Jeff Woodman's performance. He is amazing and truly took this audio to a new level.


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

    I loved when Jeff Woodman played Chablis, the fun loving fierce drag queen. He brought her to life and I loved her character. She is fun, sassy, and foul mouthed.


    Any additional comments?

    This is worth the credit and more. I loved this book. I haven't enjoyed a book this much in a long time! I told my husband that I want to visit Savannah Georgia. If it is anything like this book - then I want to visit. I imagine a city that is architecturally stunning filled with plazas, big old trees, and interesting people (who like to drink :>). This book captured my imagination. Thank you John Berendt for writing a really great book!

    7 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kelly FORT WORTH, TX, United States 07-07-10
    Kelly FORT WORTH, TX, United States 07-07-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
    31
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    74
    40
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    "Awesome!! Can't believe this is non-fiction!!!"

    This is one of those books that hangs onto you even after the story is over. Berendt does an excellent job at capturing all the characters in this one! In fact after listening to about half of it I had to double check to make sure this was still non-fiction. Awesome narration! Woodman nails the Georgian accent and really individualizes the characters. I want to visit Savanah now!!

    7 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Yvette D Skinner Baton Rouge, LA United States 10-13-09
    Yvette D Skinner Baton Rouge, LA United States 10-13-09

    luvmygsds2001

    HELPFUL VOTES
    30
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    113
    11
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    Overall
    "Better than I thought it would be"

    To be honest, I bought this audiobook because it was wildly popular (aka. made into a pop Hollywood movie) and it was set in the Deep South. To my delight, this book kept me engaged for every chapter. I would recommend this book to anyone looking for a good read, regardless of your state of origin, Southern or not!

    7 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Summer Marietta, GA, United States 05-20-09
    Summer Marietta, GA, United States 05-20-09
    HELPFUL VOTES
    36
    ratings
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    59
    14
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    2
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    Overall
    "You HAVE to hear this book...."

    I've seen the movie many times, and just got around to the book....as usual, the book is SO much better, but the movie is still great.....Being a native Southern daughter, I'm usually unimpressed with other people's attempts to capture what life is really like in the South....this New Yorker did a great job....the performance is great on the audio as well.

    15 of 16 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jenny PHILADELPHIA, PA, United States 08-14-10
    Jenny PHILADELPHIA, PA, United States 08-14-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
    9
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    18
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    "great book, great narrator!"

    I have been a member of Audible for over a year, and this is the best narration I have come across yet. He makes it so much more vivid, and I really appreciate that his southern accents are GOOD. They don't sound fake, which I think can be a problem. It helps, of course, that the book is really great and has very vivid characters, but I think the narration makes those characters really come to life. Especially Chablis! Oh I love her.
    I also liked the little snippet of interview with the author at the end.

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    David MCDONOUGH, GA, USA 03-18-09
    David MCDONOUGH, GA, USA 03-18-09
    HELPFUL VOTES
    15
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    9
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    "Great Book"

    Wonderful story line. Just recently saw the movie for the first time and it made it even better. The cast of chacters was great all having an important role as oppose to one dominating over everyone else. Would highly recommend this for listening.

    8 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    fred greensboro nc 09-27-08
    fred greensboro nc 09-27-08
    HELPFUL VOTES
    116
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    135
    85
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    4
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    Overall
    "As smooth as Savannah"

    I enjoyed my visit to Savannah this summer and managed to revisit the city again through "The Book." Hearing the author's interview at the end was a happy surprise. I read "The Book" years ago and forgot about the engaging characters. You don't have to visit Savannah to enjoy "The Book" but it definitely helps bring the story even more to life.

    8 of 9 people found this review helpful
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