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Extended Audio Sample Angle of Repose: Modern Classic, by Wallace Stegner Click for printable size audiobook cover
4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 4.00 (21,476 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Wallace Stegner Narrator: Mark Bramhall Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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Wallace Stegner’s uniquely American classic centers on Lyman Ward, a noted historian, who relates a fictionalized biography of his pioneer grandparents at a time when he has become estranged from his own family. Through a combination of research, memory, and exaggeration, Ward voices ideas concerning the relationship between history and the present, art and life, parents and children, husbands and wives. Like other great quests in literature, Lyman Ward’s investigation leads him deep into the dark shadows of his own life. The result is a deeply moving novel that, through the prism of one family, illuminates the American present against the fascinating background of its past.

Set in many parts of the West, Angle of Repose is a story of discovery—personal, historical, and geographical—that endures as Wallace Stegner’s masterwork, an illumination of yesterday’s reality that speaks to today’s.

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Quotes & Awards

  • Angle of Repose is a novel about Time, as much as anything—about people who live through time, who believe in both a past and a future…It reveals how even the most rebellious crusades of our time follow paths that our great-grandfathers’ feet beat dusty.”

    Wallace Stegner 

  • “[A] long, intricate, deeply rewarding novel…For all [its] breadth and sweep, Angle of Repose achieves an effect of intimacy, hence of immediacy, and, though much of the material is ‘historical,’ an effect of discovery also, of experience newly minted rather than a pageant-like re-creation…Wallace Stegner has written a superb novel, with an amplitude of scale and richness of detail altogether uncommon in contemporary fiction.”

    Atlantic Monthly

  • “Mark Bramhall…leads us into the saga of intertwined generations. His pacing, his characterizations, and his convincing emotional repertoire embed us in this 1971 Pulitzer Prize winner that is in no way dated…a fine reading of a superb book.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “Narrator Mark Bramhall adroitly manipulates an array of voices in this 1971 Pulitzer Prize winner. Wheelchair-bound Lyman Ward scours the letters, novels, and illustrations of his grandmother, genteel Susan Burling Ward, to re-create her life with her pioneer husband, Oliver Ward, in the ‘crude’ American West of the 1880s. Bramhall moves effortlessly between Lyman’s own troubled life—he incessantly interrupts his characters to ramble about his failed marriage—and his grandmother’s poignant writings. Even with this production’s hefty length, Bramhall’s character interpretations, along with the author’s rich, poetic descriptions of the Western frontier, remain fully engaging.”


  • “If I were to walk into a room to meet the narrator, Mark Bramhall, I would expect to find a courageous, feisty disabled man in a wheel chair. His voice is strong and sure. He has conveyed to his listeners the gift of turning himself into Lyman Ward, the man determined to uncover, discover or recover the lives of his grandparents and settle them and him finally into an angle of rest and repose. With a slight alteration in tone and manner he easily becomes Susan or the scattered Haight-Ashbury hippie, Shelly. When I first read it, it was about the present and the past; now it is about a distant and not so distant past. If anything, this is better than I remembered, maybe because I am old enough to understand.”

    SoundCommentary.com (starred review)

  • One of SoundCommentary.com’s The Best of the Best in 2010
  • Winner of the 1972 Pulitzer Prize
  • A New York Times Bestseller
  • One of the Modern Library's 100 Best English-Language Novels of the Twentieth Century

Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Patty Kunsemiller | 2/19/2014

    " 2nd reading, this time on audible, was even better than the first. just one of the finest books i have ever had the privilege of reading. i love the west, and as willa cather so aptly does, wallace stegner amplifies the experience and feelings i have about this part of the country. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Vanessa | 2/14/2014

    " This is a great story told from an interesting perspective. I kept thinking to myself, "I can't believe this is fiction". It did get a little long at parts, especially towards the end. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 by Daniel | 2/6/2014

    " Didn't get through it.... Loved "Crossing to Safety" but this was a struggle. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Steve | 2/2/2014

    " Thoroughly enjoyed this book. At times it seemed almost biographical of my own experience in life. Perhaps my least favorite aspect of a very enjoyable book was the ending. A little bit of a let down for me; but still a favorite in fiction for me. "

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