More Tales of the City

Tales of the City, Book 2
Narrated by: Cynthia Nixon
Series: Tales of the City, Book 2
Length: 8 hrs and 23 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (393 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Inspiration for the Netflix Limited Series, Tales of the City

The second novel in the beloved Tales of the City series, Armistead Maupin's best-selling San Francisco saga.

The tenants of 28 Barbary Lane have fled their cozy nest for adventures far afield. Mary Ann Singleton finds love at sea with a forgetful stranger, Mona Ramsey discovers her doppelgänger in a desert whorehouse, and Michael Tolliver bumps into his favorite gynecologist in a Mexican bar. Meanwhile, their venerable landlady takes the biggest journey of all - without ever leaving home.

©1980 The Chronicle Publishing Company (P)2012 HarperCollins Publishers
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More Real City Life Captured by Maupin

Maupin hits stride in his second book with Mary Ann, the archetypal young single woman, continuing to loosen up in San Francisco in the seventies with the help of the residents of the Barbary Lane including the gay but fretful Michael, the slightly lost Mona, the carnally hungry Brian, and the extremely well adjusted but mysterious Anna Madrigal. These characters, their lovers, and friends make for a most realistic, funny, and charming portrait of gay and straight life in the seventies in San Francisco. The overall plot involving a nice guy with serious enigmatic phobias is the least reason for enjoying these books. The real reason to enjoy these books is to see the various character's lives intersect in the most unexpected ways and for them to treat each other with all the respect, dignity, and kindness that nice people of any sort deserve. (which excludes the dastardly Beachamp Day) The narration by Cynthia Nixon is the best so far. (I've heard four of these books now.) Nixon's tender voice is an excellent match for the gentle souls of this series. She reads with the perfect blend of narration and acting skills. Rachel Maddow's (oh and that's... "sweet but all-too-short") preface hits just the right note for this ground-breaking series that, rightly, treats being gay as a perfectly normal preference given to some people at birth. If you are considering this, be sure to buy the first book "Tales of the City" first. The whole thing makes far more sense when experienced in order. Not recommended for the close-minded or prudish with lots of frank sexual discussion.

6 people found this helpful

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more from the culture wars

Armistead writes and his troop marches on through the tricky waters of the 70's Although written with humorous insight and wit, some of the pop culture references may be lost on less savvy younger readers

2 people found this helpful

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Delightful!

I like the depth of the characters and the exciting storyline. I love hearing about San Francisco.

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Fun and Frivolous Fantasy

More Tales of the City has the same great narrator as the first book of the series. It's light, funny, colorful and heartwarming-- a good antidote to and respite from the serious realities of life. Since I am conservative culturally and politically, I was amazed at finding them entertaining, rather than offensive.

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So well read, it's like going to the theater!

What a treat to listen to Cynthia Nixon PERFORM all the parts, rather than just read them as so many narrators do! I lived in San Francisco when Tales of the City ran in the Chronicle each week so this is a walk down memory lane for me. I doubt it will resonate with a young reader (it's set in the 1970s and boy, have times changed) but the story is vivid, the characters quirky and appealing, and the reading, superb. This is light but very satisfying listening.

1 person found this helpful

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Cynthia Nixon is dreadful at narration.

I did enjoy the story, but there were two major issues with this recording.

The first is technical, the playback skipped over portions of the text. I haven’t had this issue with other audiobook series. I double checked by rewinding, stopping playback and listening again but the skipping happened again. The skipping problem also happened with the previous “Tales” audiobook. Is it just with this series?

The second is Ms. Nixon’s inability to create actual characters. I found myself waiting for names to be mentioned in order to determine who was speaking. It also appeared that Ms. Nixon was feeling fatigued during parts of her narration with misreadings and mispronunciations like “lumbar picture” instead of “lumbar puncture.”

Is it possible to get a refund?

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Still in love :)

This is an excellent first sequel to Tales of the City! The characters still have stories to tell, and I’m happy to be along for the ride! I love their interlocking stories and their secrets! Such rich stories! I’m glad to see there’s more to tell :)

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Doesn't Disappoint

Superb performance and riveting to the end. The characters become your extended family, and you don't want to leave 28 Barbary Lane.

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Wonderful

I love this book it's so moving so alive can't wait to listen to more

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Great Story, Fair-to-Middling Narration

Any additional comments?

I have loved Armistead Maupin's Tales of the City series since I was in college. They are absolutely masterful. And while Cynthia Nixon has a lovely voice, she simply cannot handle the dialogue. Her narration is strangely lifeless, which is odd because she's a wonderful actor.

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Profile Image for michael furneaux
  • michael furneaux
  • 06-06-19

Hal-ceee-on?

I read this book years ago and loved listening to Cynthia’s reading. However it’s Halcyon ˈhalsɪən’ not Hal-ceee-on

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  • Lol
  • 02-10-19

Fabulous!

Well, I really got into this 2nd book in the series, felt really in touch with the characters & love the devious goings on. Narration was perfect for this story.

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  • G3org3
  • 12-03-17

Great story with colourful characters. A must read

Loved the book and can't wait to start the next one. This continuing soap-opera is entertaining on many levels

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Profile Image for A. E. Ackroyd
  • A. E. Ackroyd
  • 07-06-16

Love these books. Every one is a compelling treat.

Fabulous, engaging, evocative.
Beautifully read.
Wonderful how they draw a time and place so beautifully.
Just read them and become addicted to the world of Mrs. Madrigal.