Queen Sugar: A Novel

Written by:
Natalie Baszile
Narrated by:
Miriam Hyman

Unabridged Audiobook

Release Date
February 2014
13 hours 42 minutes
A mother-daughter story of reinvention—about an African American woman who unexpectedly inherits a sugarcane farm in Louisiana

Why exactly Charley Bordelon’s late father left her eight hundred sprawling acres of sugarcane land in rural Louisiana is as mysterious as it was generous. Recognizing this as a chance to start over, Charley and her eleven-year-old daughter, Micah, say good-bye to Los Angeles.

They arrive just in time for growing season but no amount of planning can prepare Charley for a Louisiana that’s mired in the past: as her judgmental but big-hearted grandmother tells her, cane farming is always going to be a white man’s business. As the sweltering summer unfolds, Charley must balance the overwhelming challenges of her farm with the demands of a homesick daughter, a bitter and troubled brother, and the startling desires of her own heart.

Penguin has a rich tradition of publishing strong Southern debut fiction—from Sue Monk Kidd to Kathryn Stockett to Beth Hoffman. In Queen Sugar, we now have a debut from the African American point of view. Stirring in its storytelling of one woman against the odds and initimate in its exploration of the complexities of contemporary southern life, Queen Sugar is an unforgettable tale of endurance and hope.
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great listen

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I had a lot of problems with this book. While I enjoyed the descriptions of sugarcane farming, I found the writing as a whole overly descriptive, too heavy on the synonyms, and weak characterization. It was hard for me to really root for Charley, Ms. Honey was a sweet grandmother one minute, and the next she would turn petty, downright mean and spiteful without warning or any real explanation. And Ralph Angel was just insufferable. He had no redeeming qualities whatsoever! He was selfish, entitled, coddled by Ms. Honey for some reason, couldn't get along with anyone, and couldn't do anything right. He made poor decision after poor decision but blamed everyone else for his problems. The author writes as if we're supposed to feel sorry for him, but I had zero sympathy. This was a frustrating read for me, and for once I actually feel the screen adaptation is a lot better than the book.

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Nadia R.

Loved this book. Really would love to see a movie made from this book, exactly as it was written.

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Joseph G

great book, honestly better than the TV show. I highly recommend it if you have watched the TV show on Oprahs's network.

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This was a good book. The narrator was amazing and made the book so enjoyable.

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Alicia Allen

Amazing book and narrarator! I can't wait to see the television series!

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