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Extended Audio Sample High Tide in Tucson: Essays from Now or Never, by Barbara Kingsolver Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (6,538 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Barbara Kingsolver Narrator: Barbara Kingsolver Publisher: HarperCollins Format: Abridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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Barbara Kingsolver has entertained and touched the lives of legions of readers with her critically acclaimed and bestselling novels The Bean Trees, Animal Dreams, and Pigs in Heaven.

In these twenty-five newly conceived essays, she returns once again to her favored literary terrain to explore the themes of family, community, and the natural world. With the eyes of a scientist and the vision of a poet, Kingsolver writes about notions as diverse as modern motherhood, the history of private property, and the suspended citizenship of humans in the animal kingdom. Her canny pursuit of meaning from an inscrutable world compels us to find instructions for life in surprising places: a museum of atomic bomb relics, a West African voodoo love charm, an iconographic family of paper dolls, the ethics of a wild pig who persistently invades a garden, a battle of wills with a two-year-old, or a troop of oysters who observe high tide in the middle of Illinois.

In sharing her thoughts about the urgent business of being alive, kingsolver the essayist employs the same keen eyes, persuasive tongue, and understanding heart that characterize her acclaimed fiction. Download and start listening now!


Quotes & Awards

  • “Kingsolver’s essays should be savored like quiet afternoons with a friend.... [She] speaks in a language rich with music and replete with good sense.”

    New York Times Book Review

  • “A delightful, challenging, and wonderfully informative book.”

    San Francisco Chronicle

  • “A book full of discoveries.”  

    Cleveland Plain Dealer

  • “Whether cultural, personal, or theoretical, Kingsolver’s nonfiction is a delight.”

    Seattle Times

  • “Ms. Kingsolver possesses the rare ability to see the natural world with the keenness of both the poet and the naturalist.” 

    Washington Times

  • “Brilliant...lucid, well thought-out, and remarkably sensitive. Kingsolver’s power will linger long after you’ve finished High Tide in Tucson.” 

    Kansas City Star

  • “Clever...magical...beautifully crafted. Kingsolver spins you around the philosophic world a dozen times.”

    Milwaukee Sentinel

  • “The acclaimed novelist’s extraordinary powers of observations and understanding of character serve her beautifully in this collection of essays.”

    Entertainment Weekly

  • “Admirers of Kingsolver’s novels...will relish the vibrant self-portrait these frank, bright, funny, and generous essays present...Kingsolver also writes with great verve, honesty, and humor about motherhood, housework, fashion, sports, and travel to Africa, Hawaii, and the Canary Islands.”  


  • “Twenty-five essays...grace this collection; some have been previously published, and all have been revised for this book. The title essay uses the metaphor of a hermit crab displaced from the Bahamas to Tucson to express an analogous situation in the author’s life...In between, there are musings on life in the desert, feral pigs, libraries, fidelity, childrearing, and the like, all written with a keen sensitivity to Kingsolver’s surroundings and often bringing an unusual perspective on seemingly mundane subjects...Essential.”

    Library Journal

  • “Displaying a diverse background and multiple interests, Kingsolver has written about subjects as varied as the biological clock of hermit crabs, tourist wanderings in Benin, and visiting an obsolete Titan missile site. The recurring themes here are the wonder and excitement of parenting; the respect for all creatures, religions, and points of view; and the importance of the natural world in our lives. She weaves these themes throughout her essays and presents readers with a vision of beliefs too often undervalued in our modern world.”

    School Library Journal

  • A New York Times Bestseller

Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Kathy Capps | 2/20/2014

    " This is the first, and maybe only, book of essays that was so good I couldn't put it down. Barbara Kingsolver is one of my all time favorite authors. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Leslie Hayes | 2/11/2014

    " Love, love, love this book! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Al | 2/9/2014

    " Have you ever felt that you could have someone understand you if only they'd read a particular book? While this isn't my favorite book, or my favorite Kingsolver, the varied topics in it are so agreeable to me...I feel anyone reading it could then look at me and say "oh, I see why you feel so strongly about issue X"! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Melinda | 2/8/2014

    " The essay about the crab has stayed in my mind for years "

  • > Show All
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