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Bastard Out of Carolina Audiobook

Bastard Out of Carolina

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Publisher's Summary

A modern literary classic, now available in a 20th anniversary edition with a new afterword by the author.

The publication of Dorothy Allison's Bastard Out of Carolina was a landmark event. The novel's profound portrait of family dynamics in the rural South won the author a National Book Award nomination and launched her into the literary spotlight. Critics have likened Allison to William Faulkner, Flannery O'Connor, and Harper Lee, naming her the first writer of her generation to dramatize the lives and language of poor whites in the South. Since its appearance, the novel has inspired an award-winning film and has been banned from libraries and classrooms, championed by fans, and defended by critics.

Greenville County, South Carolina, is a wild, lush place that is home to the Boatwright family - a tight-knit clan of rough-hewn, hard- drinking men who shoot up each other's trucks, and indomitable women who get married young and age too quickly. At the heart of this story is Ruth Anne Boatwright, known simply as Bone, a bastard child who observes the world around her with a mercilessly keen perspective. When her stepfather, Daddy Glen, "cold as death, mean as a snake", becomes increasingly more vicious toward her, Bone finds herself caught in a family triangle that tests the loyalty of her mother, Anney - and leads to a final, harrowing encounter from which there can be no turning back.

©1992 Dorothy Allison (P)2012 Audible, Inc.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.4 (489 )
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  •  
    Georgina Atizapan de Zaragoza, Mexico 07-17-13
    Georgina Atizapan de Zaragoza, Mexico 07-17-13 Member Since 2017

    Say something about yourself!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "I recommend to read it."

    I almost stop buying this book because of the awful reviews from people who could not stand the novel because the detailed description of the rape. It is sad that they miss this wonderful story because of that. It is just not fair. Life is life, with beauty and ugliness, with good and bad, even if we avoid reading about it, it is just is. I rather read this novel, with the rape and everything than lose my time reading “The fifty shades of grey”, that is only garbage.
    Additionally, the reader is amazing. Is one of the best one I recommend this book specially to mothers who prefer to close the eyes instead of standing up.
    By the way, regarding the last chapter, the writer does not need to apologize for anything.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    eva Shavano Park, TX, United States 07-08-15
    eva Shavano Park, TX, United States 07-08-15 Member Since 2010
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    "Faint of heart?"

    I know some people were turned off by the child molestation in this book, but the fact is that it happens so often to kids, maybe if we could read the signs of the child and the adults around them, more of it could be prevented. For these reasons, I found the story interesting, believable, and sadly informative. I felt such empathy for the protagonist, for almost more than the physical abuse, the mental abuse she endured. And FYI, the mom sucks..

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Turk70 fairhope,al 36533 08-12-17
    Turk70 fairhope,al 36533 08-12-17 Member Since 2011
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    "Banned books"

    This book should never be banned. Our children need to know, they are not alone with their secrets.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Linda 07-21-17
    Linda 07-21-17 Member Since 2011

    Linda in Omaha

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Found this book to be profound."

    I put off listening to this book, but so glad I finally did. It's rare I would call a novel 'profound,' but this one fills the bill. It is a 'novel,' as the author reminds us in the Afterward. However, I felt as if I were living the real life of a southern family and the abused child of one of their members. Mamma dearly loved her baby girl, born out of wedlock at a time and place where that was not generally accepted by society. Illegitimate was stamped on her child's birth certificate. Mamma later married and had another baby girl. Things were idyllic for a while until tragedy struck and she lost her husband. A few years later she remarried and the stepfather entered the picture. Life was good for this new family for a while, but gradually began to unravel as difficulties came along. This is a story that echos the real life struggles and cruelty and frailties of too many of us. As one man told the author years later ...You told my story. I'm sure many of us could say the same thing. Moving and profound in its message.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    That Adler Woman 06-29-17
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    "Required Reading"

    Read Hillbilly Eligy, then read this novel, then ask yourself how we as a society can support positive change.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    J. Quigley 06-05-17
    J. Quigley 06-05-17

    luvmybooks

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    "Depressing"

    From beginning to end it made me horribly sad.
    The writing itself was very good, but I listen for joy, not to be brought down.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Shawn 05-24-17
    Shawn 05-24-17 Member Since 2017
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    "A heart breaking must read."

    Though I can't relate to either Bone or Dorothy, my heart aches for those two girls. And any other child that endures horrors in this world. Let your children read this book. Let them have their hearts sympathize and eyes open to the pain that sometimes engulfs our beautiful world.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Joy 05-08-17
    Joy 05-08-17 Member Since 2014
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    "Equal parts intense and mundane"
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    The author explains in the afterword why she chose to have write this story as fiction and not memoir. It made perfect sense, and goodness knows I defer to her wisdom about writing a life of pain and bringing the message to the world. That said, I spent the entire thing wishing it was a memoir. I find something comes through that genre that is lost when fictionalized. It read like a memoir in a somewhat disconnected, scenes-from-a-life way, but for me it didn't have the same juice as if it was an actual recounting. Beginning and end were powerful. The rest only ever had half my attention.


    Any additional comments?

    Other readers have plastered their reviews with trigger warnings. While some scenes are intense, it's no more disturbing than other stories of sexual assault I've read. Might be that it personally triggered folks who had the same experience -- in which case, I'm so sorry if anything like that happened to you. I wish you healing and peace.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sandy Norman, OK, United States 10-29-16
    Sandy Norman, OK, United States 10-29-16 Member Since 2014
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    "It could have been half the length"

    I was disappointed in the story. Yes, it was very sad and unfortunate. But it was way to long and just repeated basically the same thing over and over.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lora S. 10-28-16
    Lora S. 10-28-16 Member Since 2013
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    "A sad story, beautifully told"

    This is one of those painful but important books.

    Ruth Anne Boatwright, the bastard of the title, is born into a family of men who like to drink and fight and women who mostly marry young, have too many children and not enough support, but who manage to survive anyway. Her father was married to another woman and Ruth Anne, who is called by her family just Bone, never knew him. Her first stepfather died only a few years after marrying her mother. Her second stepfather comes to blame Bone for all the things that are wrong in his life – his own father’s rejection of him, his inability to keep a job or a house, and the death of his only son – Bone’s half-brother – at birth. He abuses her horribly, physically and otherwise. The systems that should protect, or at least avenge, her all fail. And even when her uncles take it upon themselves to punish him, it only seems to make matters worse. In the end Bone, a very insightful girl, is left angry and bitter.

    A sad story, beautifully told. The narration is exactly right.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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