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Extended Audio Sample Barefoot: A Novel Audiobook, by Elin Hilderbrand Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (19,891 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Elin Hilderbrand Narrator: Katie Hale Publisher: Hachette Book Group Format: Abridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: June 2008 ISBN: 9781600242359
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It’s summer on Nantucket, and as the season begins, three women arrive at the airport, observed by Josh, a local boy who is home from college. Burdened with small children, unwieldy straw hats, and some obvious emotional issues, the women—two sisters and one friend—make their way to the sisters’ tiny cottage, inherited from an aunt. They’re all trying to escape from something: Melanie, after seven failed in-vitro attempts, discovered her husband’s infidelity and then her own pregnancy; Brenda embarked on a passionate affair with an older student that got her fired from her prestigious job as a professor in New York; Brenda’s sister Vickie, mother of two small boys, has been diagnosed with lung cancer. Soon Josh is part of the chaotic household, acting as babysitter, confidant, and, eventually, something more, while the women confront their pasts and map out their futures.

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Quotes & Awards

  • A New York Times bestseller
  • A USA Today bestseller
  • A Washington Post bestseller
  • A Wall Street Journal bestseller
  • A Publishers Weekly bestseller
  • Winner of a 2008 Romantic Novel Award
  • Finalist for the 2008 Romantic Novel of the Year Award

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Maura | 2/14/2014

    " Just started it, good so far! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Susan Garvey | 2/8/2014

    " Summer beach book! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jana | 2/5/2014

    " Great light summertime ladies' "fluff"/beach read. It's not about changing the world, just about taking a break and being entertained. Single, married, divorced---has it all for the 30/40something woman. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Carmen | 2/2/2014

    " I picked this book off a sale shelf on my way to a Florida vacation. I knew nothing about it. I wanted a light vacation read that kept me entertained and this definitely fit the bill. I love being pleasantly surprised by a story. I had little expectations but even so, I did not expect such a nice "no-brainer" vacation read. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Rachel Nelson | 2/1/2014

    " One word. Insightful and provactive and engaging. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Christina | 1/29/2014

    " Thanks Jen for lending me this book. I'm excited to read it today! This was a very nice book for a quiet day at the pool. I enjoyed the story, even though it was easy to see where it was going next. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Cristina | 1/28/2014

    " I started off hating this book after the first few chapters. The main characters were in such terrible circumstances, I thought the story lines would be too depressing to bear. I kept reading, and then found myself not being able to put it down. I grew so attached to the "family" I had to know how it all turned out. I'm glad I gave it a chance because it was a great read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ellen Bernard | 1/28/2014

    " Learned about nantucket and cancer "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Melissa Vanawken | 1/20/2014

    " a fun summer read, enjoyed the character development "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Abby | 1/19/2014

    " I was looking for a good summer chick-lit read, but this book was disappointing. Three women spend the summer in Nantucket, each dealing with their own personal crisis. I found it dull and none of the characters that interesting. I forced myself to finish it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sherra | 1/7/2014

    " A good book has sad and happy moments. Thought it could use a little more closure at the end. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Stacey Cordes | 1/4/2014

    " Entertaining and a good fun read. A bit long. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Krisit | 12/30/2013

    " It's an interesting analyzation of life from three very doomed perspectives. It also goes to explore how love is what pulls you through. I just didn't like all the sex, I feel like that's a romantic co-op used too often in the literary and movie worlds. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Bev | 12/17/2013

    " I really enjoyed this book. Great beach read about old friends and their complicated relationships/secrets. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Mandy | 12/16/2013

    " Very well written book with a nice story. Worth reading! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lee Ann | 12/12/2013

    " A fast read. I found the characters realistic, flawed and at times very self absorbed, but that is often where people are at the point in their lives when they need to run away from everything. Each woman had a reason to escape and gain perspective. each woman did. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Keri | 12/10/2013

    " I love reading Hilderbrand's stories. Perfect summer beach reads! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Maggie | 11/23/2013

    " Perfect for the beach.... only I read it in March hoping that the warm weather would soon follow. Mindless and really nice. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Amanda Wilson | 6/16/2013

    " Great book!! I get completely lost in her books. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Nancy Rader | 6/8/2013

    " Simple. Definitely chic lit "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Patricia T. | 3/19/2013

    " I can't say it was a gentle read, too many problems in it. But I toughed it out, must be all that 'Sconset beaching they did. I ended up enjoying it, but boy - the problems those three women had! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Desirae | 2/19/2013

    " Nice easy read. It'd make a good beach book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Beth Heggan | 1/7/2013

    " Not too deep, but still a good story. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kristi | 10/4/2012

    " This author knows how to sweep the reader away to Nantucket and into the characters lives. Loved it! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Tia | 8/15/2012

    " Very good book... all the characters resonated with me in some way... was interested in the whole story "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Breanna | 6/21/2012

    " Turned out to be far more complex than I expected. So many characters and they each had different struggles. They all spend the summer at the beach to try to get through the struggles. The beach is my happy place too, so I was able to relate. I look forward to read another one by this author. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Ericapurdy | 2/27/2012

    " This book was entertaining, but a little slow for me. Its about 4 ladies getting away for the summer each with a different problem but only one womans problem was exciting enough that I couldn't wait to here more. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Meg Boese | 9/25/2011

    " Anything by this author is a good light, beachy kind of read "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Michele Thomas | 7/27/2011

    " Recently have been reading a lot from this author (The Island is still my favorite) and this one was also quite good. Didn't care for all of the characters, as my favorite was Josh. It was a fast and easy read. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Willo Radgens | 6/15/2011

    " Not the best summer boom I've read, not the worst. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Christina Spizzirri | 6/12/2011

    " Makes me want to go to back to Nantucket and wish I could stay for the WHOLE summer "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Beth | 5/14/2011

    " I started out thinking it was a flimsy plot but really ended up liking it. Had to control my sobs since I was on the train going to work on one page. I love a book where that makes and laugh and cry. Good story, easy to relate to, personal dramas. I also liked the Love Season by the same author. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Andrea | 5/10/2011

    " Loved it! Elin Hilderbrand is one of my new favorites. Both books I've read by her are great books. I feel like I've been to Nantucket (even though I haven't) just by reading her novels. The characters are very real and the story lines have been very enjoyable. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Tatiana | 5/5/2011

    " The plot is ok but this just isn't a very good book. Lots of meandering thoughts from the main characters, and as a result, I didn't care very much so I skimmed it for the plot. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Samantha | 5/4/2011

    " Such a fun story of a couple of women gettin away and follwing what happens to them. I really enjoyed it and thought it was fun. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Shelly | 5/3/2011

    " Oh, was this one depressing! Not in a good cry way... I may be being generous with 2 stars, but so many other people seemed to have enjoyed it that I will be kind. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Tina | 4/26/2011

    " a little slow needs to speed up to something happening "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Adrienne | 4/16/2011

    " This wasn't my favorite by this author but it was good. It just took a little time to get into and was somewhat predictable but still a good read.... "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lee | 4/15/2011

    " I enjoy the way Elin writes about women - their emotions, feelings, shortcomings, friendships, goals, and fears. Another great one in my estimation! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jill | 4/14/2011

    " Very nice family story however I did think it was slow at some parts. Overall I'd call it a good beach read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Krissi | 4/5/2011

    " A moving story of sisterhood. About sticking together, through the good times and bad times. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Maggie | 3/25/2011

    " Perfect for the beach.... only I read it in March hoping that the warm weather would soon follow. Mindless and really nice. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jessica | 3/21/2011

    " This book was a fast read. It was ok but I really liked getting to know the characters. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Karen | 3/20/2011

    " Loved it :) First time reading this author and I really enjoyed her. Brought a tear to my eye at one point in the story and that hasn't happened in a long time. "

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About the Author
Author Elin Hilderbrand

Elin Hilderbrand lives on Nantucket with her husband and their three young children. She grew up in Collegeville, Pennsylvania, and traveled extensively before settling on Nantucket, which has been the setting for several of her novels. She is a graduate of Johns Hopkins University and the University of Iowa’s graduate fiction workshop.

About the Narrator

Katie Hale’s friendly and upbeat delivery has been put to good use in hundreds of radio spots, website tutorials, educational projects, and industrial videos. A professional actor and singer as well, Katie is a whiz with accents, dialects, and character voices and is a critically-acclaimed audiobook narrator.