cover image Tales of the City

Tales of the City

Armistead Maupin, read by Frances McDormand. HarperAudio, unabridged, digital download, 7.5 hrs. $18.99 ISBN 978-0-06-225973-8

Maupin’s tale of young Mary Ann Singleton, who relocates to 28 Barbary Lane in 1970s San Francisco at a time of great upheaval, is as engaging and relevant today as it was when it was first published (in 1978). In this audio edition, Frances McDormand skillfully narrates Maupin’s classic novel—which was originally serialized in the San Francisco Chronicle and is the first in a series of eight books. Her performance is lively and theatrical, which suits the tone and style of Maupin’s prose perfectly (the book was made into a television miniseries in the 1990s). MacDormand’s pacing is excellent, her delivery is colorful and inspired, sounding controlled but not restrained. The narrator never forces the material; rather she allows the author’s work to speak for itself. (March)