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We Have Always Lived in the Castle Audiobook

We Have Always Lived in the Castle

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Publisher's Summary

Six years after four family members died of arsenic poisoning, the three remaining Blackwoods—elder, agoraphobic sister Constance; wheelchair-bound Uncle Julian; and 18-year-old Mary Katherine, or, Merricat—live together in pleasant isolation. Merricat has developed an idiosyncratic system of rules and protective magic to guard the estate against intrusions from hostile villagers. But one day a stranger arrives—cousin Charles, with his eye on the Blackwood fortune—and manages to penetrate into their carefully shielded lives. Unable to drive him away by either polite or occult means, Merricat adopts more desperate methods, resulting in crisis, tragedy, and the revelation of a terrible secret.

©1962 Shirley Jackson (P)2010 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

What the Critics Say

“At certain moments, quietly, in quick, subtle transitions of tone, Miss Jackson can summon up stark terror, make your blood chill and your scalp prickle....To all the classic paraphernalia of the spook story, she adds a touch of Freud….” (New York Times Book Review)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.0 (1543 )
5 star
 (617)
4 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Overall
3.9 (1378 )
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1 star
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Story
4.3 (1373 )
5 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Amazon Customer Okay, OK, United States 10-18-11
    Amazon Customer Okay, OK, United States 10-18-11 Listener Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    36
    1
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    FOLLOWING
    0
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    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Dark Gothic Horror"

    If you enjoy dark stories of slowly creeping madness, give this one a listen. I couldn't turn it off.

    3 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Pamela 07-13-11
    Pamela 07-13-11

    I am an amateur ethno- botanist, an Apple evangelist and an avid consumer of audio books.Audio- books have given more choices of what to have in my head while I am doing mindless tasks. Audible has become more important now than when I first joined since I have limited shelf space in our new apartment.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    15
    ratings
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    25
    5
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    FOLLOWING
    0
    1
    Overall
    "Shirley Jackson can still Spook you"

    I read this book many years ago along with "The Haunting of Hill House". Shirley Jackson had a genius for the inner monologue of her main characters. This form of listening to the story makes it impossible for us not to want to interject a little more wisdom into that shallow gene pool of a town.
    You know what is bound to happen but you must listen pulled along by the story's intense rhythm and the narrator's voice. Like a picnic in a grave yard, this small piece of classic horror, makes you aware that it is not the dead we have to fear.
    I can't wait to share this one with my daughter, who shares my love of all sorts of plants and fungi. Especially those that can kill.LOL

    3 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Laura Montgomery Village, MD, United States 08-13-14
    Laura Montgomery Village, MD, United States 08-13-14 Member Since 2013

    Why ever would I do that?

    HELPFUL VOTES
    302
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    761
    119
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    70
    15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "two stars"
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    I found this book creepy - but I don't really know what was going on. Two stars instead of one b/c maybe I just wasn't smart enough to figure it out. Put it down. Money down the drain ...


    How could the performance have been better?

    I've read books since and can't put my finger on it, but I do remember I didn't care for the narrator.


    4 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Anne Georgiadis 05-15-17
    HELPFUL VOTES
    34
    ratings
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    179
    5
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    FOLLOWING
    0
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    Story
    "Vintage Shirley Jackson"

    Excellent and very unsettling story. The reader makes it come alive. Highly recommended as are all Ms. Jackson's works.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tanya Twombly 05-10-17 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    5
    3
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    FOLLOWING
    0
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    Story
    "Love Shirley Jackson"

    Another great work by Shirley Jackson. Sweet and tragic at the same time. interesting to consider as a representation of the plight of the housewife in the 1960s

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amber 05-04-17
    Amber 05-04-17
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    3
    2
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Interesting characters but VERY slow pace"
    Any additional comments?

    If there had been a bigger twist at the end or the story picked up in pace at some point I would have enjoyed it more. It really feels like half a book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jordan 04-14-17
    Jordan 04-14-17 Member Since 2017
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    24
    2
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "unsatisfying ending"

    story had good potential comma good character development. But the plot left something to be desired. It didn't end up going anywhere.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Samantha Dunaway Bryant Hillsborough, NC 04-09-17
    Samantha Dunaway Bryant Hillsborough, NC 04-09-17 Member Since 2014

    mirymom

    ratings
    REVIEWS
    17
    7
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Chilling and Thrilling"

    This is another re-read for me. I read the paper version as a child, and all I could really remember was that I loved it. Wow! What a story. Bernadette Dunne has a very young sounding voice, which was perfect for narrating as Mary Kat, the sociopathic girl at the heart of this story.

    What I hadn't remembered was the suspense. The slow reveal of what had happened, and how Shirley Jackson was able to surprise me at so many turns by going a different direction than I expected and still thrilling me.

    The genius is in how she can play on your sympathies. The main character is an unreliable narrator and a frightening person, and yet she has my sympathy. I'm on her side.

    Wonderful!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 04-03-17 Member Since 2016
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    6
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Different"

    This story had me in a state of Angst the entire time, I was kinda glad when it was over. Not my style. Different.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Caitlin 03-31-17
    Caitlin 03-31-17 Member Since 2014
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    35
    4
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Deliciously, nostalgically creepy"

    Strange and sweet and dark and sparklingly twisted. Too odd to describe. You must listen for yourself.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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