The Beans of Egypt, Maine

Narrated by: Joyce Bean, William Dufris
Length: 7 hrs and 20 mins
3.9 out of 5 stars (54 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

The Beans of Egypt, Maine introduced the world to the notorious, unforgettable Bean clan of small town Egypt, Maine - from wild man Reuben, an alcoholic who can't seem to keep himself out of jail; to his aunt, the perpetually pregnant Roberta; and his cousin Beal, a man gentle by temperament but violent in defeat who marries his pious neighbor, Earlene Pomerleau before poverty kills him.

Through her story of the Beans's struggle with their inner demons to survive against hardship and societal ignorance, Chute emerged as a writer of immense humanity and unparalleled insight into a world most of us knew little of - if we'd recognized it at all.

©1995 Carolyn Chute (P)2008 Brilliance Audio, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"Chute's novel pulses with kinetic energy. It seizes the reader on its opening page with a rhythm, a language, a knock-about country humor unmistakably its own." ( Newsweek)
"Like Flannery O'Connor, Chute has a gift for expressing the true spirit of a culture but with more subtlety and without overt symbolism. She simply becomes what and whom she sees." ( San Francisco Chronicle)

What listeners say about The Beans of Egypt, Maine

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1985-2018

I read this book when it was first published. Listening to it now was amazing. I’m so glad I revisited this wonderful story.

1 person found this helpful

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Woven throughout

Thoroughly enjoyed the characters. The author pulls texture and smell using only her words. loved.

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A population of America many are unaware of

It’s real I’ve known so many like the Beans as I was growing up in rural America They are forgotten people A minority too afraid to have a voice Thank you for telling their story

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As a yuppie who grew up poor in Maine

The writing style is a little jarring but it speeds up the pace and keeps the story interesting. I think it focuses on extremes but even still a number of aspects resonated with me and I think it provides important social commentary. I also found the post script particularly interesting

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I really enjoyed the book!

The book was great! I laughed at times (and not many books have made me laugh) and was sad at times. I loved the narraters...they did great!

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Interesting book about poverty in the US

I liked the book. It made me think that there are other families in the US struck by poverty; perhaps Appalachia, Louisiana...and more. I found it sad and I feel fortunate to live where I do and have opportunities many don't have in the US and other parts of the world.