Extended Audio Sample

Download The Ballad of Tom Dooley: A Ballad Novel, Book 9 Audiobook (Unabridged)

Extended Audio Sample The Ballad of Tom Dooley: A Ballad Novel, Book 9 (Unabridged) Audiobook, by Sharyn McCrumb
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (1,071 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Sharyn McCrumb Narrator: Shannon McManus, Eric Dove Publisher: Brilliance Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: August 2011 ISBN:
Coming Soon! We're adding audiobooks daily and hope to make this one available for download very soon. Submit your vote below to let us know you really crave this title!
Vote this up! This audiobook has 0 votes

The Kingston Trio's folk song Tom Dooley tells the story of the murder of Laura Foster, a simple country girl involved with returning Confederate soldier Tom Dula. But Tom was also engaged in a passionate affair with his childhood sweetheart, the beautiful - and married - Ann Melton. One May morning in 1866, Laura Foster stole her father's horse and left home, telling a neighbor that she was eloping to Tennessee. Three months later, her body was found in a shallow grave only a few hundred yards from where she was last seen. The sensational elements in the case attracted national attention: a man and his married lover accused of murdering the other woman; the former governor of North Carolina, spearheading the defense; and a noble gesture from the condemned man on the eve of his execution, saving the woman he really loved.

With the help of Wilkes County historians and researchers, author Sharyn McCrumb visited the actual sites, studied the legal evidence, and concluded that the traditional story did not make sense. Consulting the maps, the trial transcripts, and the census records, she uncovered a missing piece of the story that will shock those who think they already know what happened.

What seemed at first to be a sordid tale of adultery and betrayal has been transformed by new discoveries into an Appalachian Wuthering Heights. The fictional retelling of the historical account became an astonishing revelation of the real motives and the real culprit in the murder of Laura Foster.

Download and start listening now!


Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Linda | 2/15/2014

    " I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed this book. Sharyn McCrumb does an excellent job of evoking the desperation of life (especially for women)in post-Civil War Appalachia. Although none of the main characters are admirable, they are compelling and McCrumb's skills move the story along nicely. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Bfz | 2/11/2014

    " I have enjoyed Sharon McCrumb since she wrote Bimbos of the Death Sun. I loved ( and sorely missed) the Elizabeth MacPherson novels. I lived with my family in West Virginia for 11 years and the people and the place seemed so much like home the ballad novels brought a feeling of nostalgia and longing for that time. Ms.McCrumb's writing made you feel as if you were back there again. Having said all that I had a hard time even giving this latest book 3 stars. The people I knew in WV were mostly the type of people you would want for friends, family and neighbors. I wouldn't want anyone in this book in the same state as me let alone in the same town. Even the people with some redeeming qualities such as James Melton and The lawyer Vance, were unsympathetic. James was a colorless wimp and Vance was an opportunistic social climber. The other characters had so little to redeem them they became wooden and soulless. it's depressing and difficult to read a book with characters you care so little about. I have loved Ms. McCrumb's books and I liked the ballad of Tom Dooley. Not anymore. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Fran | 2/1/2014

    " A good story. Fascinating to learn what was behind the ballad. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Clover White | 1/26/2014

    " Very engrossing book about Appalachia. I enjoyed it immensely, although it did get the song "Tom Dooley" stuck in my head for weeks! I did find it odd that it was considered "A Ballad Novel" as it does not contain any present day characters, as it does in the previous books. Looking at a list of the books, though, I see I haven't read the last two ballad novels, either, and it looks like one of them is solely in the past as well. Anyway, a great read for people who wonder what really happened in history, or just an interesting novel about love triangles and manipulative serving girls! "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 M | 1/24/2014

    " Just didn't hold my interest. Nasty, not credible narrator. Intriguing idea-- true story behind folk song. Author claims evidence in the trial transcripts to support every assumption she made. May have just had too much description of the beautiful locale to wade through and too little character development. No sympathetic characters, either. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Casey | 1/19/2014

    " Spins a great story, but I'm not entirely sure that the people in Wilkes County, NC will appreciate the book because it is so different than the original legend. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jim | 1/18/2014

    " Although this is necessarily historical fiction, it is based on the author's thorough research of the evidence available concerning the Tom Duly case. I heard Sharyn McCrumb talk about her new book at a book signing event just before I read it. She made a convincing case for conclusions on which she based her narrative in this very readable and enjoyable book. Having recently moved to an area close to Wilkes County, NC, I found the book especially of interest. It is a good read! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lynn Shurden | 1/16/2014

    " This is a historical fiction novel about Tom Dooley! Who knew the background? I certainly didn't, but I enjoyed every word of it. McCrumb is a talented writer who obviously enjoyed the research for this novel. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jennifer | 12/25/2013

    " It was okay. I read this for a Reader's Advisory class, and yeah just okay. The characters aren't very likable, and it just wasn't my thing, but it was an interesting tale, and not a bad story. If you like historical fiction, give it a try. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Suz | 12/24/2013

    " McCrumb is back to the murder ballad books that I love best! Cool choice of narrators (although I found the lawyer's narration to be a little repetitive at times). Fascinating take on the classic Tom Dooley tale.i "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jacqueline Seewald | 12/19/2013

    " A grim tale but well-written. McCrumb tells the story from the point of view of secondary characters in the story. Was Tom Dula a noble person who took the blame for a crime he did not commit? McCrumb believes this is the case. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Katrina | 12/5/2013

    " Love McCrumb. Loved the idea of exploring this historical murder mystery. Not one redeeming character in the whole cast. Unfortunately, that killed my enjoyment of the book. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Catherine Woodman | 7/3/2013

    " This is the back story for the ballad of Tom Dooley--set in the post-Civil War period in the Appalachia region, it is the tale of Tom Dula, a pretty man who loved women and the trouble he sewed and the reward that he reaped. Nicely done. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Teresa | 1/16/2013

    " This book was very dark. An interesting take on the Tom Dooley story. Sharyn McCrumb is the master of this area's history. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Susan Grodsky | 10/5/2012

    " The backstory behind the ballad, told by an illiterate, abused bystander who has her own agenda. Desperation breeds evil. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Sarah | 1/29/2012

    " Engrossing! Loved it..read it for a new book club I belong to "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Doreen | 1/27/2012

    " Interesting story, well told on CD. I was engrossed to learn more about this tale of love and murder. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Sara | 11/28/2011

    " I've read most of Sharyn McCrumb's ballad books and this one is similar in that she researches the history behind these old songs and writes a historical novel about them. Interesting. "

Write a Review
What is FlexPass?
  • Your first audiobook is just $5.95
  • Over 90% are at or below $12.95
  • "LOVE IT" guarantee
  • No time limits or expirations
About the Author
Author Sharyn McCrumb

Sharyn McCrumb is the New York Times bestselling author of The Rosewood Casket, She Walks These Hills, The Hangman’s Beautiful Daughter, If I Ever Return, and many more acclaimed novels. Her books have been named Notable Books of the Year by the New York Times and the Los Angeles Times, and she has been honored for Outstanding Contribution to Appalachian Literature. Her awards include Best Appalachian Novel, the Agatha, and the Anthony as well as the Edgar Award and the Nero Award. McCrumb is a graduate of the University of North Carolina, and holds an MA in English from Virginia Tech.