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Download The Rehearsal: A Novel Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample The Rehearsal: A Novel Audiobook, by Eleanor Catton Click for printable size audiobook cover
0 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 5 0.00 (0 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Eleanor Catton Narrator: Nicole Arumugum, Nicole Arumugam Publisher: Hachette Book Group Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: October 2014 ISBN: 9781478954668
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The entire world is a stage—and nowhere is that more true than at an all-girls high school where a scandal has just erupted. A teacher has had an affair with his underage student, and though her friends pretend to be dismayed, they are secretly curious and jealous. They obsessively examine the details of the affair under the watchful eye of their stern and enigmatic saxophone teacher, whose focus may not be as strictly on their upcoming recital as she implies.

When the local drama school turns the story of the scandal into their year-end show, the real world and the world of the theater are forced to meet. With both performances—the musicians’ and the acting students’—approaching, the boundaries between dramas real and staged, private and public, begin to dissolve.

The Rehearsal is a tender portrait of teenage yearning and adult regret, an exhilarating, darkly funny, provocative novel about the complications of human desire.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “A wildly brilliant and precocious first novel…This young writer is astonishingly talented, and her writing can steal any scene.”

    New York Times Book Review

  • “Uncommonly witty and bold…[The Rehearsal has] a real knack for narrative and a cast of painfully familiar teenage characters who are all desperate to be as confident, cool, charismatic, and funny as possible. These are qualities that the extraordinary Eleanor Catton has in spades.”

    Times (London)

  • “Dazzling…This astonishing debut novel is a cause for surprise and celebration: smart, playful, and self-possessed, it has the glitter and mystery of the true literary original…Wherever the book falls open, it’s nearly impossible to put down.”

    Guardian (London)

  • “The novel’s real subject is the performance of human life, and in this respect, Catton’s choice of adolescent girls and drama students is apt…It’s a good piece of writing.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • "The Rehearsal is a tour de force that tells two stories simultaneously while delighting in doubles, parallels, and couples…The combination of beautiful writing and inventive, nontraditional structure still make it a dazzling debut.”

    Booklist (starred)

  • “A vibrant novel that tests its readers, both in terms of context and form…Daring and lush…a most beguiling read.”


  • “This is a novel about performance—dialogue, inner dialogue, and imagined dialogue—making it perfect for audio. Narrator Nicole Arumugum’s lovely voice is both languid and lively. The plot weaves between two simultaneous stories and jumps back in forth in time—which is difficult to follow on audio. But somehow this complication suits a book that is full of ambiguity, interchangeable characters, and the questionable use of authority. At the center of the novel is a saxophone teacher who grills her students on a school sex scandal, learns their secrets, and engineers relationships between the girls. Arumugum captures the manipulations of the teacher as well as the insecure tones of the teenagers and the college students next door. Eleanor Catton may want us to think about adolescence as a rehearsal for adulthood, but Arumugum’s performance is the real thing.”


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About the Author

Eleanor Catton, winner of the 2013 Man Booker Prize for her novel, The Luminaries, was born in Canada and raised in New Zealand. She won the 2009 Betty Trask Award and the Adam Prize in Creative Writing for The Rehearsal, which was also long-listed for the Orange Prize and short-listed for the Dylan Thomas Prize. She holds an MFA from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and an MA in fiction writing from the International Institute of Modern Letters. She lives in New Zealand.

About the Narrator

Nicole Arumugam is a British actress best known for her roll on the hit BBC series EastEnders as well as other BBC television programs.