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Extended Audio Sample Annabel, by Kathleen Winter Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (3,371 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Kathleen Winter Narrator: Tandy Cronyn Publisher: Recorded Books, LLC Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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Kathleen Winter’s luminous debut novel is a deeply affecting portrait of life in an enchanting seaside town and the trials of growing up unique in a restrictive environment.

In 1968, into the devastating, spare atmosphere of the remote coastal town of Labrador, Canada, a child is born: a baby who appears to be neither fully boy nor fully girl, but both at once. Only three people are privy to the secret—the baby’s parents, Jacinta and Treadway, and a trusted neighbor and midwife, Thomasina. Though Treadway makes the difficult decision to raise the child as a boy named Wayne, the women continue to quietly nurture the boy’s female side. And as Wayne grows into adulthood within the hyper-masculine hunting society of his father, his shadow-self, a girl he thinks of as “Annabel,” is never entirely extinguished.

Kathleen Winter has crafted a literary gem about the urge to unveil mysterious truth in a culture that shuns contradiction, and the body’s insistence on coming home. A daringly unusual debut full of unforgettable beauty, Annabel introduces a remarkable new voice to American readers.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “[Winter’s] lyrical voice and her crystalline landscape are enchanting.”

    New Yorker

  • “Affecting…Winter possesses a rare blend of lyrical brilliance, descriptive power, and psychological and philosophical insight. Her way with fate and sadness recalls The World According to Garp, without the cute irony. A compelling, gracefully written novel about mixed gender that sheds insight as surely as it rejects sensationalism. This book announces the arrival of a major writer.”

    Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

  • “Sincere…The novel’s moral of acceptance and understanding is sure to win Winter many fans.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • Annabel is a beautiful book, brimming with heart and uncommon wisdom. Life is ambiguity and flux and mystery and Winter has written a gorgeous, searing love letter to the possibilities that lie just below the surface of the everyday.”

    Michael Crummey, author of River Thieves

Listener Opinions

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 by Jenni French | 2/19/2014

    " I really wanted to like this story. Wayne/Annabel is an intersex child whose parents choose to raise as a boy. Wayne occasionally expresses desires for feminine things, desires that are quashed by a dad who wants a very masculine son. All of that is well and good, but this story is told in third person, so we never get inside Wayne's head. Added to that are all the numerous passages describing the landscape or some history of the town where he lives, and this book lost my attention. I wanted to learn about Wayne, not about Canada. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Justine | 2/16/2014

    " i wasn't really sure why the principal was able to just get his medical forms that easily (isn't that a breach of patient confidentiality?) and I am just chalking up the fact that the doctors who performed Wayne's initial surgery as an infant were doing so because they thought it was medically the safest thing to do (and possibly a result of lack of information in the region in which they were living/lack of information about the condition overall), since all of the stuff about the trapped menstrual fluid and the fetus struck me as something that could have been easily avoided. However, it was quite a pageturner. I would give it a 3.5. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Holly | 2/8/2014

    " Again, another book with a really great premise, but not executed exactly the way I'd hoped. It's not a bad book by any means; parts are very well written and struck a chord with me, but I was really disappointed with the ending because I felt it was incomplete. The story just kind of strayed off... "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Nancy Oakes | 2/6/2014

    " Review coming soon -- my friend borrowed my book! "

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About the Author
Author Kathleen Winter

Kathleen Winter was born in the industrial northeast of England, spent many years in Newfoundland, and now lives in Montreal with her husband and daughters. Winter’s novel Annabel became a #1 bestseller in Canada and was a finalist for the Scotiabank Giller Prize, the Governor General’s Award for Fiction, the Rogers Writers’ Trust Award, and the Orange Prize. It won the 2011 Thomas Head Raddall Award for Atlantic Fiction. Worldwide translations include Italian, Hebrew, Swedish, French, German, Dutch, and Chinese.