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Extended Audio Sample Beach Music: A Novel Audiobook, by Pat Conroy Click for printable size audiobook cover
4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 4.00 (19,137 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Pat Conroy Narrator: Peter MacNicol Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Abridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: July 2000 ISBN: 9780553750515
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Pat Conroy, America’s preeminent storyteller, delivers a sweeping novel of lyric intensity and searing truth–the story of Jack McCall, an American expatriate in Rome, scarred by tragedy and betrayal. His desperate desire to find peace after his wife’s suicide draws him into a painful, intimate search for the one haunting secret in his family’s past that can heal his anguished heart.

Spanning three generations and two continents, from the contemporary ruins of the American South to the ancient ruins of Rome, from the unutterable horrors of the Holocaust to the lingering trauma of Vietnam, Beach Music sings with life’s pain and glory. It is another masterpiece in Pat Conroy’s legendary list of beloved novels.

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Quotes & Awards

  • Reading PAT CONROY is like watching Michelangelo paint the Sistine Chapel. Houston Chronicle
  • Astonishing . . . stunning . . . the range of passions and subjects that brings life to every page is almost endless. The Washington Post Book World
  • Blockbuster writing at its best. Los Angeles Times Book Review
  • PAT CONROY’S writing contains
    a virtue now rare in most contemporary fiction: passion.
    The Denver Post
  • Magnificent...beach music is clearly CONROY’S best. San Francisco Chronicle

Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jeymei | 2/14/2014

    " This book was incredible. It was the right balance of humor, drama, and life lessons throughout stories of a group of friends and their parents, and their lives together. Incredible. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ms. G | 2/14/2014

    " Thank you Sharon Florin for passing this on to me. A wonderful summer saga--takes place in S.C. and Rome; brimgs up issues related to Vietnam and the Holocoust as well as saving loggerhead TURTLES from extinction--who could ask for more. Why 4, not 5, stars--some of it seemed/felt cliche--reminded me of "The Help" in that sense. Plan to read more of Conroy. Thanks again, Ms. Florin... another author to explore. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Melissa Cavanaugh | 2/8/2014

    " I like this one enough to reread it now and then, but somehow the language seems to get more purple every time. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Vicky | 2/5/2014

    " Great book! Amazing characters with intriguing histories. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Miss | 1/10/2014

    " Didnt find it worth recommending to others. Could have been a lot shorter but the author really drug it out. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Joy | 12/23/2013

    " It took a few times at starting the book, but once I did made it past the first 25 pages or so, it turned out to be very good. Glad I took the time. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Patti | 12/21/2013

    " Pat Conroy is an exceptional storyteller. He will make you cry one moment and then he will make you laugh hysterically the next. This book is beautifully written and a hard one to put down. The only complaint I have of Conroy is that he isn't a prolific writer. This book/author is on my top 10 list. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Asti | 10/21/2013

    " I think Pat Conroy has an amazing talent at word-crafting the English language (I love to savor some of the sentences he puts together), and for telling a good story. His characters are deep and his imagery is beautiful. Reader beware: excessively bad language in his books, it is incredibly oppressive, and really doesn't let up (why ruin a great book for this?). I'd like to take a sharpee and cross out all the profanity so I can keep his books in the house. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sarah Hackley | 10/14/2013

    " Full of raw emotion. Breath-taking in parts. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Sara Hansen | 10/8/2013

    " This was a beautiful story, however, I had a hard time relating with the characters. It is written from a very masculine point of view and the dialogue is not believable. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Craig Fulton | 9/12/2013

    " His worst book ever. It is simply unreadable. Try the Prince of Tides it is a great book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Leah | 8/24/2013

    " This was an amazing book! Loved everything about it. The first Pat Conroy book I've read....will definitely have to read more. His writing is very captivating. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 TJ | 8/3/2013

    " Sometimes sad, sometimes hysterical, this is among Conroy's best. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kelly Branch | 6/5/2012

    " LOVED this book! LOVE the author - I met Pat Conroy and he signed this book for me. I want to re-read it... "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Anthony | 5/27/2012

    " Entertaining ! Good read! It involved the music of my era. I read this I'm Paperback in 2003. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 M. Stafford | 4/27/2012

    " Good story. Inconsistent at times re: character development. Enjoyable...bit too long. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jenni Franz | 4/13/2012

    " I love the way Pat Conroy writes. Such vivid (and sometimes horrifying) images. Beach Music was poetry to me. Rhythmic, descriptive but always hopeful in the end. I need to read more from him, but LOVE The Prince of Tides movie depiction. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Rachel Rhodes | 4/1/2012

    " It was too long for me and jumped back and forth between time periods and story lines. I'm glad I stuck with it and finished....great ending! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Courtney Milford | 2/12/2012

    " From what I've read of Pat Conroy, this is his masterpiece. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Randolf Elias | 1/28/2012

    " Loved this book! Written so eloquently. I booked a trip to Italy soon after reading this! :) "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sara Cat | 11/23/2011

    " Highstrung, melodramatic, and overwrought, but I still really like it as a comfort read. And I'll admit it! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Clocklin locklin | 9/24/2011

    " This is one of my favorite books. I love the way he tells a story. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Donnamacauley | 9/23/2011

    " Any thing by Pat Conroy is excellent. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Cindy | 9/16/2011

    " This book was fantastic! Beautifully written. I love reading Pat Conroy. It's like a love affair with the English language! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Erika | 9/2/2011

    " Some of the scenes in this book were so brutal that I have a hard time thinking about them even know. They were balanced somehow by the idyllic world this father tried to create for his little girl. Intense if nothing else. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Leigh | 8/31/2011

    " One of the best books I have ever read, hands down. The story of a man who has escaped to Italy with his young daughter, devastated after the suicide of his beautiful wife, Shyla, a few years before. He returns to his home in coastal South Carolina and seeks healing, and may again find love. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jan | 6/29/2011

    " Probably my absolute favorite Conroy book. His writing is exquisite and lyrical. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Barbra | 5/20/2011

    " Editing Pat Conroy's books must be a massive undertaking and he can be overly dramatic at times but he has the soul od a poet and the heart of a man who has lived through good times and bad. This was a good summer read for me a few years ago. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Maureen | 5/14/2011

    " How did I miss this gem by my grammar school class mate (Blessed Sacrament, Alexandria, Va - 2 years ahead of me)....it's fabulous. The perfect read for a dank, rainy May Saturday. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Doreen | 5/10/2011

    " Conroy came through on this one. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lynne | 5/6/2011

    " Not my favorite of his, but still very good read. "

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

    " Very well written! I enjoyed it a lot and didn't want it to end... "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Tanya | 4/11/2011

    " My favorite Pat Conroy book. The one that got me reading all of the rest. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jean | 4/9/2011

    " Pat Conroy is one of my favorites [how can you not love Prince of Tides?] and while I enjoyed this parts seemed to drag. It took him a long time to get on with it. But I did like the brothers and he sure writes a great description "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 CynthiaA | 4/6/2011

    " I love the way Conroy writes. He makes me feel like I am a character in his novels. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Linda | 4/3/2011

    " If you like Pat Conroy you will LOVE this book. He makes you laugh and cry! "

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About the Author
Author Pat Conroy

Donald Patrick “Pat” Conroy (1945–2016) was an American author of acclaimed novels and memoirs, two of which made it to #1 on New York Times bestsellers list: Beach Music and South of Broad. Four of his novels were made into major motion pictures: The Prince of Tides, The Great Santini, Conrack, and The Lords of Discipline. The novel on which the movie Conrack was based, The Water Is Wide, won an NEA Human and Civil Rights Award and an Anisfield-Wolf Book Award.

About the Narrator

Peter MacNicol is an American actor. He is known in films for his roles of Janosz Poha in Ghostbusters II, Stingo in Sophie’s Choice, and David Langley in Bean. For television he is known for the roles of the eccentric lawyer John Cage in the Fox comedy-drama Ally McBeal, as Tom Lennox in the sixth season of action-thriller 24, Alan Birch in the medical drama Chicago Hope, and as physicist Dr. Larry Fleinhardt on the CBS crime drama NUMB3RS.