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Publisher's Summary

The works of Thomas Wolfe cemented his legacy as one of the very best of the American Southern writers. Wolfe's largely autobiographical novel features Eugene Gant, who pines for a more expansive life after being born to a father whose bouts of maniacal raving are fueled by a prodigious appetite for drink.
©1957 Edward C. Aswell; (P)2008 Recorded Books, LLC

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 3.8 out of 5.0
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Performance

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Story

  • 3.9 out of 5.0
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  • Overall
  • Eric
  • Thornleigh, Australia
  • 02-22-09

One Of The Gret Novels Of The 20th Century

My purpose in writing this review is to provide a balance. It would be unfortunate if someone in the new Century, coming upon Thomas Wolfe for the first time, and unaware that they held within their hands one of the masterworks of the Twentieth Century, were deterred, and thus denied themselves a significant reading pleasure. If in reading it some 80 years after Wolfe wrote it, you feel it is too wordy, has too much description, or could have been edited more, remember this: Wolfe was in his mid twenties when he wrote it. Max Perkins, who is universally acknowledged as the greatest Editor of the Twentieth Century (he discovered/first published Scott Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway, Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings etc.) was his Editor. Perkins, after much struggle, got him to cut 90,000 words from the original manuscript.

If you love the language; if you value wordcraft and the evocation of imagery in a sublime form; if you appreciate Steinbeck, Pat Conroy, Waltari and Shirley Haggard for these reasons, if you are a writer or want to be; if you hunger for a book that has masterful characterisation that will imprint the characters indellibly on your mind, then listen to and enjoy "Look Homeward, Angel". You will then know the Gants and the Pentlands like your own family and you will know why, as someone who averages reading / listening to 137 books per year (over 1200 since January 2000), I count this as one of my ten favourites, and why is has been for over 35 years. In addition, Scott Sowers has done a Masterful job of narration. It is worth the credit!

104 of 104 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

A classsic read

I saw that this book was one of Pat Conroy's favorites, and since he is my favorite author and I need to read some classics, I listened to this one. Thomas Wolfe's language is amazing and I see why they study this in school. Wow.

14 of 14 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • AJ
  • Honolulu, HI, USA
  • 05-31-16

Marvelous

I don't know which I loved more, Wolfe's poetic flourishes and a Woolfian ability to inject philosophical wonder into the mundane, or Sowers's flawless voicings and performance. I played this at a more comfortable 1.20x speed. I got hopelessly sucked into the world of the Gants, audibly gasping in wonder at some of Wolfe's most beautiful lines. A favorite from minute 1. I wish Sowers would record the sequel and the more recent uncut, unedited release.

The smallest of complaints - the chapters didn't line up with the Audible chapter breaks. Very minor issue that I could live with.

10 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

A Classic for a reason

This is not the easiest listen/read but to me, well worth the time and money. A voice from another time, The tone of Wolfe's writing adds to the story, giving a sense of the time period. Narration is #1 with any audio book for me and Scott Sowers is great.

15 of 16 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

the king of the adjective

what a painting of life lived out, if not wrung out, of such a diverse set of characters

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Flawed Genius

A man chronicles his escape from the constraints that his father struggled against and his mother embraced.

5 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Very disappointed

Was anxiously to read this first novel of Thomas Wolfe after the movie Genius. I stuck through to the bitter end. Script was overdone with flowery and dramatic language. The narrater was annoying.

2 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Nothing ever happened.

What did you like best about Look Homeward, Angel? What did you like least?

I have never come across such a well-written book where nothing ever happened. Each character was worthless to every other character. Nothing ever made sense. I had no attachment or sympathy towards any character. I never discerned a plot or any point whatsoever. I desperately listened as the end approached and the author's brilliant writing swirled towards the punchline that would surely tie it all together, but it was one giant loose end in every regard. I did not get it. I just did not get it. What the heck was this guy's point? Why did he write this book? Why did he choose the title? I cannot even make a guess.

Did Scott Sowers do a good job differentiating all the characters? How?

He took some getting used to, but yes. He has a nice speaking voice. In the beginning I resented a narrator reading with inflection as though to a child, but halfway through I rather enjoyed him. Nice singing voice.

Was Look Homeward, Angel worth the listening time?

Oh hell no.

Any additional comments?

I wanted to listen to this book because it was so highly recommended by Pat Conroy in his book, My Reading Life. The only reason I can imagine that Pat enjoyed it so much was that one of the characters like to read a lot.

2 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Teresa
  • NEWTON, NJ, United States
  • 01-25-17

Horrible Performance! Truly OVER THE TOP!!

What would have made Look Homeward, Angel better?

A sane, subtle read was all that was called for. You know. Sensitive.....

Who was your favorite character and why?

This is one great book. So what's with favorites?

How did the narrator detract from the book?

By Hamming It Up. SHAMELESS CORN....<br/>

What character would you cut from Look Homeward, Angel?

the director. smaller case should be available

Any additional comments?

Try this again with a better crew. It should NOT be hard to find. Returning this porker.

0 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
  • Story

BOOK WAS NOT AVAILABLE - CREDIT MY ACCOUNT PLEASE

What made the experience of listening to Look Homeward, Angel the most enjoyable?

I AM ADVISED THIS BOOK IS NOT AVAILABLE SO PLEASE ISSUE A CREDIT TO MY ACCOUNT

0 of 4 people found this review helpful