• Catherine, Called Birdy

  • By: Karen Cushman
  • Narrated by: Jenny Sterlin
  • Length: 6 hrs and 31 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • 4.3 out of 5 stars (129 ratings)
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Publisher's Summary

In 1290, her 14th year, Catherine begins a diary that quickly fills with the irrepressible joys and frustrations of her days. Always looking for ways to avoid drudging hours of embroidery, Birdy fills her time with pranks, celebrations of feast days, and local gossip. Wriggling out of her father's plans to find a prosperous husband for her proves to be Birdy's greatest challenge.

As each prospective suitor appears, Birdy blacks her teeth, drools, and does her best to scare him off. These mischievous tricks work until Shaggy Beard, the richest one of all, arrives with his fat purse of silver. Karen Cushman does careful research for each of her books, so Birdy's lively journal is sprinkled with the vivid, personal details of life in medieval England.

©1994 Karen Cushman (P)1996 Recorded Books

What listeners say about Catherine, Called Birdy

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  • Overall
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Corpus bones! What a great heroine.

Really great historical fiction for anybody, but if you are a feminist parent looking for good books for you children, I don't think you could do better than Karen Cushman's work. The medieval heroine of this one is esp. hilarious: "Now my father, the toad, conspires to sell me like a cheese to some lack-wit seeking a wife. . . Corpus bones! He comes to dine with us in two days' time. I plan to cross my eyes and drool in my meat." Narrator Jenny Sterlin really does Catherine justice: Plays her straight, which makes for great comedy.

3 people found this helpful

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Amazing

I've loved this book since I was a kid. It never gets old! Karen Cushman's story is thoughtful and Jenny Sterlin's performance is awesome. Definitely recommend.

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Great Listen!

Using this as a novel to help 7th graders understand women's rights... Love the author's note at the end!

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Charming!

I love this book! I read it when I was young and decided to revisit it as an adult through this recording. As always Jenny is a delight. I love to hear her read. I imagined the book was being read to me by an older Catherine!

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An Imagined Glimpse

First--why is the cover to this audiobook title so vastly different from the book? Don't let it fool you!

Second--this book was my jam in middle school. I loved it to bits. Although, I'll have to tell you, that it may not be for everyone. It's set in Medieval Europe in a diary format from a 14-year-old girl. Some may not like the day by day treatment of the narrative. Some may not find Catherine's spunky behavior appropriate for a medieval setting. Good for me, I am not a part of those "some." I found the novel charming, engaging, and informative. I've been a fan of Jenny Sterlin since I was a kid, so she can really do no wrong as a narrator for me.

Third--Karen Cushman really did her homework with this novel. Actually, the fact that she studies the time periods she writes about so thoroughly is the reason why I've made a point to read all of her books. She's another reason why I want to write professionally one day because of her dedication to make sure her craft is as authentic as it can get.

Conclusion--if you're into the Medieval time period and are open to a different point of view, try this baby out!

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My 5th Re-read

This book has been a favorite of mine since I was a young girl. A spunky heroine who asks curious and thoughtful questions about the world around as she is growing from child to woman in a world that takes roles and relationships for granted. A truly wonderful tale!

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Loved the reader and the book

Excellent reader! I will look for other books narrated by her. Loved the book, also.

1 person found this helpful