- Audible Audiobook
- Listening Length: 12 hours and 6 minutes
- Program Type: Audiobook
- Version: Unabridged
- Publisher: Penguin Audio
- Audible.com Release Date: May 6, 2011
- Whispersync for Voice: Ready
- Language: English
- ASIN: B004ZLYSU8
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank:
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Caleb's Crossing Audible Audiobook – Unabridged
|New from||Used from|
Audible Audiobook, Unabridged
|Free with your Audible trial|
$14.95/mo after 30 days. Cancel anytime
Sold and delivered by Audible, an Amazon company
Customers who bought this item also bought
Would you like to tell us about a lower price?
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
In this beautifully researched novel of fiction you will meet Bethia, the daughter of one of the missionaries whose association with Caleb, a young and brilliant Indian boy teaches her of the land and its gifts around her and the acceptance of hardship as a method of education. Their friendship accompanies them through the entire novel as each of them in their own way protect one another.
The story is filled with the hardships of those early years and it takes Bethia through the cruelty of this education which is not possible for her as a girl, then a woman who, with her strength and intellect is able to learn by listening secretly to the teaches of her father and others who follow him in this mission to educate. These lessons through tragedy and ancient superstitions lead her to Harvard College where she sees her boyhood friend become the first Native American to graduate from this stronghold of universities.
Research and imagination bring you to disbelief and disgust as you learn of life and the cruelties of it in the 15th century of the colonies.
Don't let the slow pace of the beginning stop you. Follow characters who fit the tale to the end. It is an education in itself!
This novel is an education in itself. It is a fine example of the early years in our country.
So: I've read all of Geraldine Brooks's novels, and really enjoyed them. 'Year of Wonders' definitely makes it onto my top 10 of historicals (if you ignore the absurd epilogue) and I am a fussy reader! After a few recent attempts at historicals that just didn't deliver, I bought this figuring, given the author, that it was a sure bet. Unfortunately, I was wrong. This book falls into that category of novels that too many good writers seem to put out when they've become famous enough that anything goes. It's as if they feel pressured to come up with another story, and the editors check out and sign off on a mediocre offering because it's going to sell regardless...eeech.
Don't get me wrong: Brooks's prose in 'Caleb's Crossing' is still beautiful. But the story is, at best, confused, and at worst, tedious. As others have pointed out, this book has been disingenuously marketed as a story about the first native American to graduate from Harvard. In actuality, the novel skims the surface of Caleb's fascinating life, while focusing on a fictitious, oppressed-smart-girl narrator who's become a somewhat tedious stock character in Brooks's work. Which is sad, because this could have been an amazing study of parallel, marginalized lives in a colonial society if Bethia and Caleb had been given equal air-time.
Likewise, so much was suggested but left undeveloped in the plot, which could have made the novel much more interesting. The early relationship between Bethia and Caleb, for instance, suggested future romantic tension, which then entirely failed to materialize. Okay, 17th century puritan society would have precluded any serious relationship between these two; on the other hand, the relationship they DID form was equally improbable, as are a number of Bethia's actions by comparison. As in: would a girl who would willfully swallow a hallucinogenic drink pilfered from a native medicine man really never even consider the romantic possibilities with her native best friend? And then, when a love interest for Bethia does eventually happen along, he's nowhere near as interesting as Caleb. I could never quite understand why she was overcome with lust for the irritating Samuel, while apparently impervious to it with Caleb. So many interesting secondary characters remained equally, frustratingly undeveloped - Makepeace, Anne, and Joel to name a few.
So, yes, a disappointment. I wish Brooks would go back and write Caleb's story from Caleb's point of view!
The radical Pilgrim sect, secluded on an island, does not shine in glowing colors. I regret these may be some of my indoctrinated ancestors.
But a moving and compelling story of love, communication, and what people will give to maintain their own truth.