The Good House

  • by Ann Leary
  • Narrated by Mary Beth Hurt
  • 10 hrs and 12 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Audie Award Finalist, Fiction, 2014
A riveting novel in which an engaging and wildly irreverent woman is in complete denial - about herself, her drinking, and her love for a man she's known all her life.
The Good House tells the story of Hildy Good, who lives in a small town on Boston's North Shore. Hildy is a successful real-estate broker, good neighbor, mother, and grandmother. She's also a raging alcoholic. Hildy's family held an intervention for her about a year before this story takes place - "if they invite you over for dinner, and it's not a major holiday," she advises "run for your life" - and now she feels lonely and unjustly persecuted. She has also fooled herself into thinking that moderation is the key to her drinking problem.
As if battling her demons wasn’t enough to keep her busy, Hildy soon finds herself embroiled in the underbelly of her New England town, a craggy little place that harbors secrets. There's a scandal, some mysticism, babies, old houses, drinking, and desire - and a love story between two craggy 60-somethings that's as real and sexy as you get. An exceptional novel that is at turns hilarious and sobering, The Good House asks the question: What will it take to keep Hildy Good from drinking? For good.


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Soberingly Funny

I've watched over the months as the reviews for this one came in. You see five more stars from the corner of your eye and think, "don't do know how disappointed you get when it doesn't meet your expectations." But, reviewers I watch and trust really liked this. I caved in and downloaded it, the whole while with those oh-my-god-what-have-I-done blues.
This needs to be a series.

Hildy Good is the kind of sassy smart character you love -- even when she is passed out on her cellar floor. Leary has written an engaging funny book with a robust main character that just happens to be an alcoholic, whom everyone thinks is a successful graduate of AA. The author doesn't minimize the condition at all, rather she keeps Hildy human and dimensional, making those moments of drunkenness all the more sad and pitiful. She portrays the thinking process of an alcoholic wonderfully; you don't realize how truly destructive this funny woman is until she is raging out of control.

The Good House is one of those books with atmosphere; you feel immersed in the quaint little New England town. Hildy introduces the characters, mostly by their more scandalous moments, and they become neighbors. Leary develops the characters as the story proceeds, giving them a depth and personality you don't expect. But then, I didn't expect most of this story! It's funny, it's sobering, it's surprising, it's a great choice, and Mary Beth Hurt brings Hildy to life perfectly.

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- Mel

What a great book, Hildy is a great character!

Would you consider the audio edition of The Good House to be better than the print version?

I wanted to read Leary because she is a transplanted New Englander like me (married to actor/comedian Denis Leary) and I loved her story about alchoholic Hildy, Hilda Good descendent of Sarah Good who was hanged in Salem for witchcraft back in the day. Hildy is 60 year old woman, a real successful real estate agent in small town MA who has been a serious drinker for a long time, and even though her daughters have staged an intervention, and Hildy has gone to treatment, she still finds a way to drink, quietly. What follows is a wild ride with a fix-it guy she is attracted to, weathy nutty neighbors and a great story that really pulls you in. Recommend.

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- Rhonda Morrison

Book Details

  • Release Date: 01-15-2013
  • Publisher: Macmillan Audio