Download The Ninth Hour: A Novel Audiobook

The Ninth Hour: A Novel Audiobook, by Alice McDermott Extended Sample Click for printable size audiobook cover
Author: Alice McDermott Narrator: Euan Morton Publisher: Macmillan Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: September 2017 ISBN: 9781427289209
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A magnificent new audiobook from one of America’s finest writers—a powerfully affecting story spanning the twentieth century of a widow and her daughter and the nuns who serve their Irish-American community in Brooklyn.

On a dim winter afternoon, a young Irish immigrant opens the gas taps in his Brooklyn tenement. He is determined to prove—to the subway bosses who have recently fired him, to his badgering, pregnant wife—“that the hours of his life belong to himself alone.” In the aftermath of the fire that follows, Sister St. Savior, an aging nun appears, unbidden, to direct the way forward for his widow and his unborn child.

We begin deep inside Catholic Brooklyn, in the early part of the twentieth century. Decorum, superstition, and shame collude to erase the man’s brief existence. Yet his suicide, although never spoken of, reverberates through many lives and over the decades testing the limits and the demands of love and sacrifice, of forgiveness and forgetfulness, even through multiple generations.

The characters we meet—from Sally, the unborn baby at the beginning of the book who becomes the center of the story, to the nuns whose personalities we come to know and love, to the neighborhood families with whose lives they are entwined—are all rendered with extraordinary sympathy and McDermott’s trademark lucidity and intelligence.

The Ninth Hour is a crowning achievement by one of the premiere writers at work in America today, and the audio edition is truly unforgettable.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Euan Morton narrates as Annie and her daughter, Sally…His steady, gentle delivery allows McDermott’s elegant prose to shine. It’s a quiet story about love and sacrifice that manages to be extremely moving without becoming sentimental or maudlin. Morton’s performance similarly brims with emotion but never overflows.”


  • “A haunting and vivid portrait of an Irish Catholic clan in early twentieth century America.”

    Associated Press

  • “In this enveloping, emotionally intricate, suspenseful drama, McDermott lures readers into her latest meticulously rendered Irish American enclave.”

    Booklist (starred review)

  • “Asks how much we owe others, how much we owe ourselves, and, of course, McDermott’s consistent attention to the Catholic faith, how much we owe God.”

    Library Journal (starred review)

  • Longlisted for the Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction
  • A New York Times Book Review Notable Books of the Year selection
  • A NPR Best Book of the Year pick
  • A Library Journal Best Books of the Year choice
  • A Wall Street Journal Best Books of the Year pick
  • A Time Magazine Top 10 Books of the Year selection
  • A Barnes and Noble Best New Books of the Year selection
  • Finalist for the Indies Choice Book Award for Best Audiobook of 2018
  • Finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award for Fiction
  • One of Kirkus Reviews’ Best Books of 2017

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About the Author

Alice McDermott is the author of several novels, including Charming Billy, winner of the 1998 National Book Award, and three books that were finalists for the Pulitzer Prize. Her stories and essays have appeared in the New York Times, Washington Post, New Yorker, Harper’s Magazine, and elsewhere. She is the Richard A. Macksey Professor of the Humanities at Johns Hopkins University.

About the Narrator

Euan Morton is an Earphones Award–winning narrator. As an actor and singer, he is best known for his role as Boy George in the musical Taboo, which earned him a Laurence Olivier Award nomination. He reprised the role on Broadway, earning him the Theatre World Award for Outstanding Broadway Debut, as well as nominations for the ony, Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle, and Drama League awards. His other stage performances include Leaves of Glass, Sondheim on Sondheim, and Cyrano De Bergerac.