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Publisher's Summary

All six Tales of the City novels available in one audio edition with a special introduction by the author.

Armistead Maupin's uproarious and moving Tales of the City novels have earned a unique niche in American literature, not only as matchless entertainment but as indelible documents of cultural change in the '70s and '80s.

Among the cast of this groundbreaking saga are the lovelorn residents of 28 Barbary Lane: the bewildered but aspiring Mary Ann Singleton; the libidinous Brian Hawkins; Mona Ramsey, still in a'60s trance; Michael "Mouse" Tolliver, forever in bright-eyed pursuit of Mr. Right; and their marijuana-growing landlady, the indefatigable Mrs. Madrigal.

Includes:

  • Tales of the City
  • More Tales of the City
  • Further Tales of the City
  • Babycakes
  • Significant Others
  • Sure of You

©1978, 1980, 1982, 1984, 1987, 1989 The Chronicle (P)2009 HarperCollins Publishers
  • Abridged Audiobook
  • Categories: LGBTQ+

Critic Reviews

"Maupin, with all his elegance and charm, has found a place among the classics." ( The Observer)

What listeners say about Tales of the City Audio Collection

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Where's Michael's Letter to his mom?

I've loved these stories for many, many years, but this compilation is an extreme disappointment. Much of the best and funniest material has been cut. Gone are Michael's amazing coming out letter to his mother, all references to Mary Ann's tacky friend Connie, the roller sting nuns, Mona's trick in the brothel -- and more. It's very sad. Mr. Maupin reads as if he needs a dose of Prozac -- missing all the good humor and exuberance of his own writing. If you're interested in these wonderful stories, tick to reading the books or watch the two excellent mini-series; this is completely charmless.

31 people found this helpful

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Beware: abridged!

All of my wonderful friends from TotC and lovingly read by the author. But I have never been a fan of abridged books and this is abridged. I am missing all of the delicious details. The book skims the surface of the tales and leaves me feeling not quite satisfied.

9 people found this helpful

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Great as a refresher, not as an introduction

Listen to this collection only if you’ve already heard or read the unabridged versions. It’s great as a refresher if you haven’t read the books in a long while, but a lot of important moments are missing, namely ‘Michael’s Letter to Mama’ from ‘More Tales...’ A great collection, but this shouldn’t be your introduction to 28 Barbary Lane.

7 people found this helpful

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Don’t buy

This is a fantastic serious BUT this is NOT all 6 books! Wasted my money on this!!!

5 people found this helpful

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Missing stuff

A good synopsis of the books. Kind of like a movie version. I did enjoy that it was read by the author. For even more quirky laughs it's best to read the books.

2 people found this helpful

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This sucked

What disappointed you about Tales of the City Audio Collection?

The narrator sounded like a stoic sixth grader no emotion with a weird phony southern accent OH it is the author

Would you ever listen to anything by Armistead Maupin again?

no

Would you be willing to try another one of Armistead Maupin’s performances?

no

Any additional comments?

I want a refund

2 people found this helpful

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All those Wonderful Tales of the City!!!

I lived through most of what occurs in Armistead's writing (Yep, yet another gay man transplanted in the City--back in the 70-80's) Goddess, I miss those days! This is a must listen to (although, somewhere on my bookshelves, I've got the originals)! Armistead really changed a lot of people with his writings back in those days (heck, even the San Francisco Chronicle (the books were originally part of a daily column & the newsstands were always selling out, therefore, the Chronicle was rolling in the profits!) I miss the "family get together up on Russian Hill with Armistead & Terry!! But, I digress, if you want the closest version of the City by the Bay during that time; then by all means do not hesitate & get this complete series & enjoy LIFE!!! Woof no Slumps! (And, don't forget to 'Take a Bite of the Lotus Fruit" aka falling in love with our City!)

1 person found this helpful

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A lovely look back

Maupin's Tales of the City is a great collection of stories in 1970s San Francisco. The cast of characters is delightful!

1 person found this helpful

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Get the books individually

I do love the books, but I felt this series left too much out.

1 person found this helpful

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Loved it!

I really enjoyed the development of characters. Sadly, in the final book in this it was clear that the author was struggling for content but even with that, it was a great series of books that I enjoyed completely.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Sheila
  • 06-23-15

This is not Unabridged as advertised

Any additional comments?

I have read and enjoyed some of these books before, and bought this collection on the basis of it not being abridged. Unfortunately, it became apparent during the first book that it had been heavily abridged, with whole sub-plots excluded, and it was very disjointed. Overall, they're still great stories, but I'd recommend seeking out the individual unabridged works.

25 people found this helpful

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  • Ms M. White
  • 07-26-17

Great story but hard listening

A Maupin is not a great narrator. Monosyllabic and lacking in depth and somewhat whiney when speaking the female characters, it was hard sometimes to follow the flow and tone of the story, and even which character was speaking. A wonderful story but I think it would have been better served if a more dynamic actor or tease had delivered it.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Rachel
  • 07-23-22

Warning - abridged version

I love tales of the city but this version is disappointing as it is abridged and that was no clear on audible.

That reflects no way on the author or the quality of the reading and recording, but audible should have made clear that this was an abridged version.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 06-15-22

What happened to Connie Bradshaw? Etc.

Very abridged! Didn't realize till a few minutes in. Would not have purchased if I had known this. Missing Connie taking her to the grocery store and staying at her apartment. I guess they'll have to cut out Shawna later.... This was only one omission I noticed.

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  • Heather Jones
  • 05-06-22

VERY disappointing. Poorly abridged.

I LOVE these books and have read them about once a year for decades. I was delighted to discover them as audiobooks but quickly found myself wondering if I had inadvertently skipped over chapters. Then I realized this version is VERY abridged and poorly at that. It’s so disappointing and I’m annoyed that isn’t part of the description. And despite loving Armistead, he was not a good narrator— which surprised me because he was so charismatic in interviews. It’s very monotone and flat and when he does try to inject a little personality to the characters it comes across forced and a bit cringy (it kills me to write that, but it’s true). Add to this the random addition of music between sections… ???? Such brilliant books and sadly this version does not do them the service they deserve.

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  • Robert Stone
  • 04-13-21

far too abridged

Fabulous original series badly compromised by both the fact that far too many parts from the originals were omitted and the while story would have benefited from a professional actor instead of author narrating

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 08-23-20

Brilliant Tales!

Superb, loveable characters and intriguing, interwoven plots and events, proudly narrated by the author himself.

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  • Semer 57
  • 01-08-20

Meeting old friends

I read all these books in the 80’s so it was like meeting old friends and what a pleasure it was. I loved Armistead reading them. My only criticism is the intermittent music which seemed to appear for no reason and added nothing to the experience.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 07-23-19

fucking amazing

loved every second of it. maupin's a genius. Can't pick a favourite book, all of them are fantastic.

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  • Culwen
  • 04-25-16

Interesting pocket of stories

I liked some of the main plot twists and the characters formed and their development over time.

I disliked some anti-climatic parts. Also the story is read in almost monotonous level, so that sometimes it hard to decipher who says what.