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Publisher's Summary

When Percy Harding, Goliath’s most important citizen, is discovered dead by the railroad tracks outside of town one perfect autumn afternoon, no one can quite believe it’s really happened. Percy, the president of the town’s worldrenowned furniture company, had seemed invincible. Only Rosamond Rogers, Percy’s secretary, may have had a glimpse of how and why this great man has fallen, and that glimpse tugs at her, urges her to find out more.

Percy isn’t the first person to leave Rosamond - everybody seems to, from her husband, Hatley, who walked out on her years ago, to her complicated daughter Agnes, whose girlhood bedroom was papered with maps of the places she wanted to escape to. The town itself is Rosamond’s anchor, but it is beginning to quiver with the possibility of change. The high school girls are writing suicide poetry, the town’s young, lumbering sidewalk preacher is courting Rosamond’s daughter, a troubled teenage boy plans to burn Main Street to the ground, and the furniture factory itself - the very soul of Goliath - threatens to close.

In the wake of the town’s undoing, Rosamond seeks to reunite the griefshaken community. Goliath - a story of loss and love, of forgiveness and letting go - is a lyrical swoon of a novel by an exceptionally talented newcomer.

©2012 Susan Woodring (P)2012 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Critic Reviews

Goliath brings small town life beautifully, achingly alive…A memorable novel.” (Ann Hood, best-selling author of The Knitting Circle)
“Woodring’s sense of the constraints and hardearned pleasures of home rings as true and pure as a train whistle in the night.” (Michael Parker, author of The Watery Part of the World)
“Woodring’s writing is so clear and moving that the reader often feels, as she says of one of her characters, as if ‘the world had been sucked clear of true sound.’ This beautiful portrait of a place and its people, rendered so quietly and intimately, shuts out the world outside its pages as you read. Only the best novels can make you forget yourself as reader. Goliath is the kind of book you don’t want to put down or to end.” (Brad Watson, author of The Heaven of Mercury)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
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  • Story

Agonizing

I don't like writing a review if I can't make it through the book. If I can save people money, that's a good reason for breaking my own review rule. Don't buy this book. If the story of a murder attracts you, consider the hundreds of other murder mysteries out there that are well written and well read. For one thing, the narrator reads as slow as a snail. I even tried the 1x reading feature of my itouch to see if that would help. Unfortunately the other problem is the actual story is just as tedious. When I made the decision to end it, I walked into my house and my first words were, "I just can't do this one." I kept thinking if I bought it in written form, I could skip over all the boring parts. The problem with that is I suspect once I get past all those, there'd be no story. I have no idea how this one got published. Save your money. Move on.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Story

You get what you pay for - $5 sale

This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

Someone who likes listening to sloowwwwwww reading by a kindergarten teacher.

Has Goliath turned you off from other books in this genre?

No - I couldn't stand listening to the reader long enough even to guess what the story was like. What I heard was well written, though. I didn't want to review the story itself because I didn't feel I had heard enough, but was compelled to submit a rating in order to write a review. Sorry about that.

How did the narrator detract from the book?

Horribly horribly slow and unnatural pacing and inflection.

You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

The writing seemed to be good. I plan to read it (in written form).

Any additional comments?

Why on Earth do narrators think they have to read so slowly?!?! Good heavens. It's torture!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Story

What's the point?

What would have made Goliath better?

A plot! There seems to be none....just the thought clouds of various people around town who knew the deceased who apparently was the central character tho he was dead from the first minute. None of these different people whose thoughts we are hearing seem to connect with each other very much and their various thought processes are not particularly engaging or thought-provoking. I quit about half way through the book because I just couldn't care about any of the characters. None of them had developed a personality or a story by that point. Reminds me of a very bad William Faulkner imitation.

What could Susan Woodring have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

Create a STORY involving all those random people.

Would you be willing to try another one of Clarinda Ross’s performances?

NO.....she made the book even worse to listen to. Her narration was stiff and unemotional making the meanderings of the characters thoughts even more pointless. She read like someone just picked out of a crowd who was self-conscious and read with a lot of hesitations and pauses in inappropriate spots in a sentence. Very boring.

What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

Boredom and frustration

Any additional comments?

There are an awful lot of mediocre authors getting published and this is one of them.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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I couldn't go through with it.

I bought this book during the $5.00 sale thinking it was a great deal but I really wish I had my $5.00 back. I listened to almost all of the first part thinking that it was just a slow beginning but the book never really started anything after 7 hours of listening. The main characters were so hard to relate to and I never got a clear picture of any of them or why they were worth writing about. Horrible narration made this flat novel even flatter. I tried to get through it but I just can't listen to another word.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • i. Ski
  • Duluth, Minnesota
  • 03-17-13

Like watching paint dry

I quit this one after 4 agonizing hours of nothing going nowhere. I wonder why this had good reviews from other listeners. Baffling.

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Too Bad I Have to Give the Story 1 Star

This book is as mindless as listening to a grocery list. There is NO story. Don't hold out waiting for one because the suicide of the town's citizen is the ONLY story. Not why, not his life before, not anything. After the first paragraph, there is NO story.

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Sleepy Story of a Sleepy Town

I admit I only listened to part of the first part of this book. It just moves too slowly and the narrator's voice is so soothing as to be soporific. In the end, I just didn't care what happened to the characters, so I stopped listening.

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Don't waste your time and/or money

The story just never seemed to develop. Slow, slow, very slow, after 2/3 of the book, i gave up.

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Worst story ever.

Would you ever listen to anything by Susan Woodring again?

not likely

How could the performance have been better?

Move it along a little faster

You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

I didn't find any

Any additional comments?

Too much detail. I love unabridged books but this was agonizingly slow and painful.

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  • Victoria
  • Warrenton, VA, United States
  • 07-25-12

OH MY GOSH!!!!!!!

I'M sure this book was a good one. I purchased it because of the reviews it got on amazon, not reading the reviews on Audible. I sure wish I had read the reviews! The narrator should be shot! Wow, I can't describe how painful it was listening to her awful dictation and unbelievable pacing and wrong inflection. My 6 yr old grandson does a better job reading out loud. Please take my advice and stick to the written copy of this book to save your sanity.