If Beale Street Could Talk: A Novel Audiobook, by James Baldwin Play Audiobook Sample

If Beale Street Could Talk: A Novel Audiobook

If Beale Street Could Talk: A Novel Audiobook, by James Baldwin Play Audiobook Sample
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Read By: Bahni Turpin Publisher: Blackstone Publishing Listen Time: at 1.0x Speed 4.67 hours at 1.5x Speed 3.50 hours at 2.0x Speed Release Date: February 2016 Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download ISBN: 9781504680806

Quick Stats About this Audiobook

Total Audiobook Chapters:


Longest Chapter Length:

128:52 minutes

Shortest Chapter Length:

48:30 minutes

Average Chapter Length:

106:46 minutes

Audiobooks by this Author:


Other Audiobooks Written by James Baldwin: > View All...

Publisher Description

In this honest and stunning novel, James Baldwin has given America a moving story of love in the face of injustice. Told through the eyes of Tish, a nineteen-year-old girl in love with Fonny, a young sculptor who is the father of her child, Baldwin’s story mixes the sweet and the sad.

Tish and Fonny have pledged to get married, but Fonny is falsely accused of a terrible crime and is imprisoned. Their families set out to clear his name, and as they face an uncertain future, the young lovers experience a kaleidoscope of emotions—affection, despair, and hope.

In a love story that evokes the blues, where passion and sadness are inevitably intertwined, Baldwin has created two characters so alive and profoundly realized that they are unforgettably ingrained in the American psyche.

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“James Baldwin convincingly writes from the perspective of a teenaged girl, and narrator Bahni Turpin’s delivery heightens the raw power of his storytelling…Turpin brings nineteen-year-old Tish to life, capturing all her pain and hope with edginess and unflagging energy. In actuality, Turpin offers two distinctly separate performances—that of the story’s narrator and that of the protagonist. Although both roles are tied together through Baldwin’s use of first-person narration, Turpin differentiates between the narrative and the character’s dialogue and actions through a masterful variety of tones and inflections. The result lifts Tish from the static page and brings her into the room.”

— AudioFile 


  • “A moving, painful story, so vividly human and so obviously based on reality that it strikes us as timeless.”

    — Joyce Carol Oates, New York Times bestselling author
  • “Striking and particularly haunting…[with] a beauty, especially in its rendering of youthful passion.”

    — Cosmopolitan
  • “A moving, painful story. It is so vividly human and so obviously based on reality that it strikes us as timeless.”

    — New York Times Book Review
  • “A major work of black American fiction.”

    — New Republic
  • “One of the best books Baldwin has ever written—perhaps the best of all.”

    — Philadelphia Inquirer
  • “Emotional dynamite… a powerful assault upon the cynicism that seems today to drain our determination to confront deep social problems.”

    — Library Journal
  • “Possesses a genuinely sweet and free spirit.”

    — Kirkus Reviews


  • A New York Times Bestseller
  • A Publishers Weekly Pick of the  #1 Most Anticipated Book-to-Film Adaptation of 2018

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About James Baldwin

James Baldwin (1841–1925) was a pioneer of primary education. He worked as a teacher for many years and eventually as an administrator. He also served as editor-in-chief of the American Book Company, which specialized in educational texts.

About Bahni Turpin

Bahni Turpin, winner of numerous AudioFile Earphones Awards and several prestigious Audie Awards for her narrations, was named a “Golden Voice” by AudioFile magazine in 2019. Publishers Weekly magazine named her Narrator of the Year for 2016. She is an ensemble member of the Cornerstone Theater Company in Los Angeles. She has guest starred in many television series, including NYPD Blue, Law & Order, Six Feet Under, Cold Case, What about Brian, and The Comeback. Film credits include Brokedown Palace, Crossroads, and Daughters of the Dust. She is also a member of the recording cast of The Help, which won numerous awards.