The Peach Keeper

A Novel
Narrated by: Karen White
Length: 7 hrs and 38 mins
4 out of 5 stars (593 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

The New York Times best-selling author of The Girl Who Chased the Moon welcomes you to her newest locale: Walls of Water, North Carolina, where the secrets are thicker than the fog from the town’s famous waterfalls, and the stuff of superstition is just as real as you want it to be.

It’s the dubious distinction of 30-year-old Willa Jackson to hail from a fine old Southern family of means that met with financial ruin generations ago. The Blue Ridge Madam—built by Willa’s great-great-grandfather during Walls of Water’s heyday, and once the town’s grandest home—has stood for years as a lonely monument to misfortune and scandal. And Willa herself has long strived to build a life beyond the brooding Jackson family shadow—no easy task in a town shaped by years of tradition and the well-marked boundaries of the haves and have-nots.

But Willa has lately learned that an old classmate—socialite do-gooder Paxton Osgood—of the very prominent Osgood family has restored the Blue Ridge Madam to her former glory, with plans to open a top-flight inn. Maybe, at last, the troubled past can be laid to rest while something new and wonderful rises from its ashes.

But what rises instead is a skeleton, found buried beneath the property’s lone peach tree, and certain to drag up dire consequences along with it. For the bones—those of charismatic traveling salesman Tucker Devlin, who worked his dark charms on Walls of Water 75 years ago—are not all that lay hidden out of sight and mind. Long-kept secrets surrounding the troubling remains have also come to light, seemingly heralded by a spate of sudden strange occurrences throughout the town.

Now, thrust together in an unlikely friendship, united by a full-blooded mystery, Willa and Paxton must confront the dangerous passions and tragic betrayals that once bound their families—and uncover truths of the long-dead that have transcended time and defied the grave to touch the hearts and souls of the living.

Resonant with insight into the deep and lasting power of friendship, love, and tradition, The Peach Keeper is a portrait of the unshakable bonds that—in good times and bad, from one generation to the next—endure forever.

©2011 Sarah Addison Allen (P)2011 Random House

What listeners say about The Peach Keeper

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    267
  • 4 Stars
    167
  • 3 Stars
    116
  • 2 Stars
    27
  • 1 Stars
    16
Performance
  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    226
  • 4 Stars
    109
  • 3 Stars
    52
  • 2 Stars
    22
  • 1 Stars
    19
Story
  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    222
  • 4 Stars
    117
  • 3 Stars
    70
  • 2 Stars
    18
  • 1 Stars
    11

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars

Narrator was terrible

Love the author but the narrator's voice droned on and on ... It was hard to get through the book with her extremely, painfully slow, staggered speech pattern she chose for the main character ... Such a shame that a narrator can ruin a good book.

10 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

WORST NARRATION I'VE EVER EXPERIENCED

I've been an Audible member since 2001 and have over 320 books in my Library. I can honestly say that the narration of this book is the WORST I've ever experienced! So much so, that I nearly gave up on the book 20 minutes into it as I found myself focusing on the annoying narration style rather than the book. The narrator's voice would frequently swing from breathy to scratchy (as if she were pulling the last bit of air from the bottom of her lungs) several times within a sentence. Her cadence was completely off, rising and falling inappropriately, as if she were doing a newscast (and not a very good one) rather than narrating a book.

This is a shame because I find Sarah Addison Allen's books to be charming. I am frequently amazed at how in tune she is with the senses (particularly the sense of smell), nature, and the relationships between women--all the while weaving in a little magic. While Sarah's books likely won't win any awards, they are a pleasure to read and I find the content refreshing.

I gave this particular book 3 stars assuming that 3 stars is an "average" rating. I reserve 5 stars for hands-down outstanding books such as Stieg Larsson's books and "The Peach Keeper" isn't Sarah Addison Allen's best work. Don't let this deter you from reading the book though--just be sure to do it in print!

9 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars

Good story ruined by narrator

I love Sarah Addison Allen stories, so I was very disappointed that the narrator was so bad in this production. She speaks in a weird sing-song voice with odd pauses. Her delivery really interferes with the story. For the first time ever with an Audible book, I ended up buying the print version so I could finish the story.

6 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars

The story is better than the reader........

I love this author and have read a few of her books, this is the first one I have listened to........very annoying!!
The enunciation was extreme and sing songy, sort of mono-tone. I really thought about not listening and then I eventually got used to it, but this was not the usual standard of Audible.

6 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Listen at 1.5x speed

Lovely story, like all of SAA's books. A little less whimsy and more mystery which I actually enjoyed a lot. The narration is awful but if you listen at 1.5 speed it makes the halting, weird reading much more bearable.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Wonderful !!!

Love Sarah Addison Allen ! Great story always light ,fun and a little mysterious mixed with love :) cant wait for her next book
all of her books are magical

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

GREAT LISTEN!!

This is the first book that I've reads from SAA, but I plans to read more. I started listening to this and just couldn't stop listening. I so believe that we find what we need when we need it, and friends come into ours lives at different times for a reason. Remember we shouldn't always judge the book by the cover(or the person). Great book!! Nice that it's based around North Carolina.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Ok, but I wasn’t as engaged as I hoped.

Womens fiction with some romance. It’s about two women (Willa and Paxton) becoming friends and finding love. The ending is feel good. There is a little mystery about a dead man buried under a tree. We learn the story about that. But overall I felt the story and plot were lacking. Maybe more interesting characters would have helped.

There are a couple sex scenes referred to no details. There is a mention that some rapes occurred in the past but no details shown.

AUDIOBOOK NARRATOR:
Karen White was awful. She used a high pitched super sweet voice like she was talking to a little baby bird. A few times when it wasn’t the baby talk voice it was a wimpy whiny voice. She has done some other books that I was fine with. I don’t know why she did this book this way.

OTHER BOOKS:
I’ve read the following books by this author.

5 stars. Garden Spells 2007
4 ½ stars. The Sugar Queen 2008
3 stars. The Girl Who Chased the Moon 2010
3 stars. The Peach Keeper 2011
2 ½ stars. Lost Lake 2014 (too much grief)
3 stars. First Frost 2015 (sequel to Garden Spells)

DATA:
Narrative mode: 3rd person. Story length: 273 pages. Swearing language: none. Sexual content: see above - references to sex but no details. Setting: current day Wall of Water, N. Carolina with a 1936 back story. Book copyright: 2011. Genre: womens fiction with some romance.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

HORRIBLE narration. Wont let me return

What would have made The Peach Keeper better?

A different narrator. This narrator is HORRIBLE. I didnt get passed the first 2 chapters. And now, it wont let me return the book.

Would you ever listen to anything by Sarah Addison Allen again?

Yes, but not from Karen White. SHE IS HORRIBLE.

What didn’t you like about Karen White’s performance?

Not one thing. Her narration is why I want to return the book and cant finish it.

You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

It may have. But I havent been able to get them because I cant stand to listen to Karen White one minute longer.

Any additional comments?

Angry that it wont let me return it.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Another tale of love

A Peach Tree once grew here. Few remember how it got here. But two old bitties do and their younger kin bond over the secret. Allen does it again with a double romance. Her characters are genuine and almost real (maybe a little too kind to be entirely real). Peaches is a mysterious stranger who changed everything then disappeared. In a small town, mysterious deaths are called accidents and no one is accused, but one woman knows what she did, and the other woman remembers that to have a friend, she really must be one. Garden Spells is my favorite Addison Allen book, but this one is a sweet and quirky tale of two young women from different "backgrounds" who are changed by their experiences, mature as women, and find true love.

1 person found this helpful