The Awakening

  • by Kate Chopin
  • Narrated by Shelly Frasier
  • 5 hrs and 5 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Edna Pontellier is married, twenty-eight, and at the cross road of her life. She is passionate and artistic, but has no one who understands her deep yearnings. She jumps at the chance to spend a summer away from her husband and the heat of New Orleans at a small costal retreat.Here she is enveloped in a small circle of friends where she can begin to throw off the strictures and moires of the 1890s bourgeoisie. Stepwise Edna renounces her obligations, takes a lover, and is propelled in a course that frees, consumes, and eventually destroys her.
In what was to be her last novel, Kate Chopin shocked the readers of her day, by showing a woman fulfilled by throwing off the ties of marriage and children.


What the Critics Say

"Interesting and timely...Chopin's oracular feminism and prophetic psychology almost outweigh her estimable literary talents." (Newsweek)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Amazing Story with So-So Narration

It really struck me that for a book published in 1899, the story is still so fresh and resonates with emotion that is easily understood by the modern reader (or listener). The author excelled at both capturing elusive internal feelings and descriptions of the Louisiana coast and New Orleans of days gone by. It is a real page-turner, and although I had read it years ago, I couldn't wait to hear the story play out. The narration, however, leaves A LOT to be desired. The narrator affects a truly awful southern drawl when characters are speaking which can be extremely distracting. She also mispronounces most French place names and given names repeatedly as well as numerous english words.
Listen and love it for the story, and try to ignore the bad narration.
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- Lucy

Love Chopin and Frasier

I absolutely love Kate Chopin--everything she writes is thought provoking and intense, full of double-voice discourse. Personally, I don't think anyone can understand Edna Pontellier unless she is at least 25 and has been married. The book speaks to me each and every time I read/listen to it--in fact, as I become older, I read and react to the book differently (Bakhtin's chronotope). The Awakening is one of my all-time favorite books.

If you are into traditional romances, like Harlequin, you would likely not like this book.

Shelly Frasier is fantastic. Her laid-back rhythm and cadence really evokes the New Orlean vibe and feeling.
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Book Details

  • Release Date: 08-23-2005
  • Publisher: Tantor Audio