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Extended Audio Sample Burning Bright, by Tracy Chevalier Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (6,389 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Tracy Chevalier Narrator: Jill Tanne Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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The wonderful new novel from the much-loved author of Girl with a Pearl Earring and Falling Angels

Flames and funerals, circus feats and seduction, neighbors and nakedness—Tracy Chevalier’s new novel sparkles with drama. 

London 1792. The Kellaways move from familiar rural Dorset to the tumult of a cramped, unforgiving city. They are leaving behind a terrible loss, a blow that only a completely new life may soften. Against the backdrop of a city jittery over the increasingly bloody French Revolution, a surprising bond forms between Jem, the youngest Kellaway boy, and streetwise Londoner Maggie Butterfield. Their friendship takes a dramatic turn when they become entangled in the life of their neighbor, the printer, poet, and radical, William Blake. He is a guiding spirit as Jem and Maggie navigate the unpredictable, exhilarating passage from innocence to experience. Their journey inspires one of Blake’s most entrancing works. 

Georgian London is recreated as vividly in Burning Bright as seventeenth-century Delft was in Tracy Chevalier’s bestselling masterpiece, Girl with a Pearl Earring.

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Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Joyce McCombs | 2/20/2014

    " As with Chevalier's "Girl with Pearl Earring".. .this book is a YOU ARE THERE experience. I couldn't put it down and devoured it in a few hours one recent afternoon. Set in 18th century London, with William Blake as a main character, the story revolves around the children who live next door to him and how they experience growing up in a turbulent political time, as well as understanding their roles in society and as young adolescents. Chevalier makes it seem perfectly possible that William Blake and his wife would of COURSE come to the aid of one of the children in the story and the readers believes it utterly, also. The rich prose transports one to the market, the circus, the pea soup fog of London, the Thames River (before good sewer systems!) and the every day hardscrabble existence of those living on the fringes of society -- no middle class here, though one seems to be emerging throughout the story. Although this is the story of an ordinary family, there's nothing less than extraordinary about this writing.. another Chevalier triumph, in this reader's opinion! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Rochelle Jewel Shapiro | 2/17/2014

    " What a wonderful book, such interesting characters and one of them is William Blake! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by SmarterLilac | 2/11/2014

    " I tried to like this, I really did. The characters here just aren't as compelling as those in T.C.'s other books. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Caitlin | 1/13/2014

    " On par with most of Chevalier's books, though still not as good as "Girl with a Pearl Earring." It is similar to that story in that it's built around a historic figure - poet William Blake - who is not the main character, but who's biographical facts are an integral part of the plot. I don't write much anymore, but the style and plot patterns remind me of how I would approach a story of historical fiction, so I enjoy it and feel like it reads easily. She also strongly executes a thematic idea (maybe a little too obviously at points.) I feel like some of the characters could have been given a little more depth too, especially some on the fringe that are interesting but never addressed fully (even Blake). All in all though, it's an light and entertaining read. "

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