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Publisher's Summary

Everyone in Cape Cod thinks that Mother is a wonderful woman: pious, hardworking, frugal. Everyone except her husband and seven children. To them she is a selfish and petty tyrant, endlessly comparing her many living children to the one who died in childbirth, keeping a viselike hold on her offspring even as they try to escape into adulthood. Welcome to Mother Land: a suffocating kingdom of parental narcissism.

©2017 Paul Theroux (P)2017 Recorded Books Inc

Critic Reviews

"Theroux possesses a fabulously nasty sense of humour." (Stephen King)
"Detailed, intricate, and dark." ( Library Journal)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
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  • Betty
  • 01-09-18

Narcissism and dysfunction make for a great novel

Would you listen to Mother Land again? Why?

I’m listening to it again in case I missed anything first time as I listen to this at night on a timer.

What other book might you compare Mother Land to, and why?

This compares to earlier Theroux novels where you wonder which parts are fiction and which parts are autobiography.

What does Jefferson Mays bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

Mays offers a good voice characterisation of the various individuals in the novel.

Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

This is comic but does make one think about the workings of one’s own family

Any additional comments?

A narcissistic mother and a dysfunctional family - what’s not to love!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Caroline Nuttall
  • 12-16-17

Brilliant

A modern day family saga , wry, ironic observations of siblings and their mother, had me laughing out loud.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Robin K
  • 05-01-18

Boring

I usually love Paul Theroux's books. I am not interested in his dysfunctional family. This autobiography is not for me.

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  • ANNABEL
  • 01-31-18

Really worth a listen

I really enjoyed this book. It is long and sometimes gets rather bogged down in self pity and complaining but that’s the story. It’s so well written (to my ears anyway, I’m no expert)
I really loved the language and it was very funny. I didn’t warm to any of the main characters, that’s not essential I don’t think. The personalities are so honestly portrayed and hilariously harsh and real. Fantastic!

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  • Rebecca
  • 01-16-18

Fabulous a must read

I am sure you will be reminded of your own mother and your own family at some point during your listening . I thought of the similarities with Joyce Carol Oates, We Were the Mulvaneys and the family angst when listening to Motherland. Paul Theroux has a huge genius in making me feel very guilty and then making me laugh and feel no guilt about my own Mothers Death