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Where the Crawdads Sing

Narrated by: Cassandra Campbell
Length: 12 hrs and 12 mins
5 out of 5 stars (19,216 ratings)
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Publisher's Summary

Number-one New York Times best seller

A Reese's Book Club + Hello Sunshine on Audible Pick

"I can't even express in words how much I love this book...the way it’s performed on Audible just took me right back to my long summers in Tennessee. This story has a special place in my heart - I didn’t want it to end." (Reese Witherspoon) 

"Painfully beautiful." (The New York Times Book Review)

"Perfect for fans of Barbara Kingsolver." (Bustle)

How long can you protect your heart?

For years, rumors of the "Marsh Girl" have haunted Barkley Cove, a quiet town on the North Carolina coast. So in late 1969, when handsome Chase Andrews is found dead, the locals immediately suspect Kya Clark, the so-called Marsh Girl. But Kya is not what they say. Sensitive and intelligent, she has survived for years alone in the marsh that she calls home, finding friends in the gulls and lessons in the sand. Then the time comes when she yearns to be touched and loved. When two young men from town become intrigued by her wild beauty, Kya opens herself to a new life - until the unthinkable happens. 

Perfect for fans of Barbara Kingsolver and Karen Russell, Where the Crawdads Sing is at once an exquisite ode to the natural world, a heartbreaking coming-of-age story, and a surprising tale of possible murder. Owens reminds us that we are forever shaped by the children we once were, and that we are all subject to the beautiful and violent secrets that nature keeps.

©2018 Delia Owens (P)2018 Penguin Audio

Critic Reviews

"Narrator Cassandra Campbell serves up a bushel of Carolina accents in this debut novel by nature writer Delia Owens. Campbell's accents give the mix of classes and regions in the story the same realistic detail Owens provides for the marsh.... Prepare to be enchanted and haunted." (AudioFile)

"A lush debut; Owens delivers her mystery wrapped in gorgeous, lyrical prose." (Alexandra Fuller, author of Don't Let's Go to the Dogs Tonight)  

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 5 out of 5 stars
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Performance

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Story

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Wonderful

This was a wonderful Audible book to listen too. Set in the 1950's, it's a tale of a young girl who is abandoned and rejected not only by her family but also by the towns people. She is known as the Marsh girl, left to fend for herself at the age of ten. She is befriended and loved by some but mostly talked about by the towns people as that Marsh trash.
Those who have befriended, cared for and loved her along the path of her loneliness and growing up, see the value and worth of her hard won self taught skills. It was a moving story that will be read and reread in my lifetime.

185 of 196 people found this review helpful

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Took my Breath Away

All I can think is "To Kill a Mockingbird". This kept me intrigued until the very last page! If you love nature, you will love this book. If you love mystery, you will love this book. If you love romance, you will love this book.

102 of 109 people found this review helpful

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Felt like I was there...

...in the lagoons and marshes of South Carolina. After a long spell of so-so books laced with gratuitous obscenities and graphic sex, this was a breath of fresh salt air beautifully written. I will not soon forget Kya’s unique story with its painful beauty. The Deep South setting was vibrantly enhanced by the narrator’s rendition of southern country accents and voices of many characters, both male and female. Highly recommended!

229 of 246 people found this review helpful

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Not my usual style

I usually go for a thriller, however after reading the reviews on this book I thought I’d give it a shot. So happy I did! It is so beautifully written and the narration was very enjoyable! Please give this book a chance!

33 of 35 people found this review helpful

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One Of The Best Ever!

This audiobook was one of the best I’ve ever listened to and I average at least 2 per month! Cassandra Campbell is outstanding and delivers the story is just one of my favorites!

54 of 58 people found this review helpful

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Beautiful

As a woman who always felt a little out of step and lonely I suggest this thoughtful most artful book.
I give all 5's because I loved it!

38 of 41 people found this review helpful

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So good. So, SO good.

Such a unique story. Such flowing words and colorful writing skills by the author. In a world full of TED Talks and self-help books, this novel was a much-needed escape. I can’t wait to read more of her books.

63 of 69 people found this review helpful

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Didn't love this!

I was all set to love this book. Living in North Carolina and being an admirer of the coastal natural environment, I thought this book would be just my thing. I see that most other reviewers loved it. But I found this book to be heavy on cliche and shallow stereotyped characters, and just couldn't buy the motivations of some of the characters in certain parts of the book. Why did the supposedly caring mother leave all her children with someone she knew to be abusive--and never contact the children again? Why was Kia "walking like a duck" when Tate spied on her? Huh? I just couldn't buy the wealthy (and predictably also arrogant and violent) man's interest in Kia either. It just did not follow. I couldn't buy the idea that someone who had never been more than a few miles from home could write a guild to seashells of the east coast. The cringe-worthy depiction of the black mammy could not have been more stereotypical--it was painful to read. She says "Lawd" all the time and calls Kia "Chile." Many characters were constantly saying "I reckon...."

The best writing in this book happened when the author was writing about nature. The writing there is honest, compelling, clear, and sometimes poetic. Wow! This person CAN write. And maybe will improve with experience? I hope so. Even though I didn't love this book, I wish I could go bird watching with the author down on the NC coast.

The other thing that I didn't like was the narration; it might be just me, but Kia's weird baby voice and Beverly Hillbillies accent grated on my nerves from the start. Probably it would be better in print.

17 of 18 people found this review helpful

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✫✫ 4 Stars ✫✫

What an interesting story! I found myself wanting to speed up this audiobook so I could see where it was going. The story of Kya's life was hard and heartbreaking but it was honest and gritty. You can't help but feel incredibly sad for her and the life she was left. Never feeling good enough, feeling abandoned and still she made the very best out of what she given. I loved that she found her way even in a unconventional way. The ending was very satisfying even if it was a little predictable. With all that, I still have to say that this book was a little slow for me. It would pick up and keep me enthralled then it would slow down and drag before it picked up again.

The narration was good. Cassandra Campbell is a great narrator but I will admit that I didn't feel her voice for Kya at all. I thought she would be a little more wild rather than wispy.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

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DO NOT MISS THIS READ/LISTEN!

I will choose my word’s carefully, so as NOT to betray the books contents. All I can say is that it was a myriad of ups and downs, captivating, thought provoking and profound. In fact, there are SO many avenues in which to provoke thought, I may have to listen again and ponder each one over and over. So many very human and real emotions as well, understanding thereof! One can’t really be disappointed with the ending, for how else could it end? Indeed, a plausibly realistic ending with applicable content throughout and within ALL walks of life. Captivating. Simply captivating.

53 of 58 people found this review helpful

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  • Claire D.
  • 09-27-18

Beautiful

A beautiful story, beautifully read. I loved this from start to finish, the narrator brought the story and characters to life, I didn’t want it to end!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 09-22-18

This book truly touched my soul.

A wonderful beautiful book which makes you feel breathtakingly lonely and ecstatic with happiness all together.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Teresa Bargallo
  • 11-08-18

One of the best reads I had by far in a long

One of the best reads I had by far in a long. What a true heroine!

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  • Mrs. G. F. Schotten
  • 10-16-18

wow

this is simply beautiful. I could not stop listening to this hauntingly sad and at the same time uplifting tale.

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  • Molly
  • 10-12-18

Haunting and gripping

Although there are some overblown descriptions of the marshes and lagoons the essence of this story is good. It interweaves well between past and present to tell the story of a murder.
You cannot help but be drawn into the lonely life of the Marsh Girl and find out whodunnit.

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  • Jo Jevons
  • 10-08-18

Amazing

My favourite book this year! Owen’s vivid depiction of marsh life and an abandoned child unraveled into this masterpiece of story telling with themes so current and ancient at the same time. I could not stop listening.

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  • Michaela Stokes-Bridgman
  • 11-07-18

Sooooo good!!!

Wow what a book! A story which will stay with you long after you finish. Fantastic narration. Such a great experience I highly recommend this book!

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  • Anonymous User
  • 10-19-18

exceeded all expectations

Along with the praise for this book in other reviews, I would add that the delicate engagement with essential ideas around nature versus nurture, biological determinism, evolution and adaptation was a wonderful surprise. What a great way this would be to introduce these concepts in the classroom, particularly where there is resistance to scientific evidence.

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  • firedog
  • 09-28-18

Remarkable, Memorable, Beautiful

Everything about this book will stay with me; the setting, the characters, the plot. As for the writing, it is superb. Also the reader brought the book to life in a quiet understated exactly right performance. Highly recommend.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 09-14-18

Outstanding

I adored this book. I couldn't put it down, it had me in tears and had my stomach in knots at times. Beautifully written and narrated. I will definitely listen again. Thank you.