Mother Land

  • by Paul Theroux
  • Narrated by Jefferson Mays
  • 23 hrs and 19 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

A richly detailed, darkly hilarious novel of a family held together and torn apart by its narcissistic matriarch.
To those in her Cape Cod town, Mother is an exemplar of piety, frugality, and hard work. To her husband and seven children, she is the selfish, petty tyrant of Mother Land. She excels at playing her offspring against each other. Her favorite, Angela, died in childbirth; only Angela really understands her, she tells the others. The others include the officious lawyer, Fred; the uproarious professor, Floyd; a pair of inseparable sisters whose devotion to Mother has consumed their lives; and JP, the narrator, a successful writer whose work she disparages. As she lives well past the age of 100, her brood struggles with and among themselves to shed her viselike hold on them.
Mother Land is a piercing portrait of how a parent's narcissism impacts a family. While the particulars of this tale are unique, Theroux encapsulates with acute clarity and wisdom a circumstance that is familiar to legions of listeners. And beyond offering the shock and comfort of recognition, Mother Land presents for everyone an engrossing, heartbreaking, and often funny saga of a vast family that bickers, colludes, connives, and ultimately overcomes the painful ties that bind them.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Caustic story. Think of them as caricatures.

Much of this story parallels the life of the author but it is so over the top mean, snarky and harsh that o finally decided to think of all of the family members as broadly drawn caricatures.
Too dysfunctional with no relief. No ones family is this horrible. I wish the narrator had put a bit of sarcasm in his voice. When I did that it seemed more
like the usual nasty sibling aside you hear from sharp tongues.
A bit like rubber necking a bad accident on the highway. It was repetitive and the main character is whiney and feels sorry for himself but I am still glad I finished it.
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Book Details

  • Release Date: 06-01-2017
  • Publisher: Recorded Books