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A Tree Grows in Brooklyn
Cover of A Tree Grows in Brooklyn
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn

A PBS Great American Read Top 100 Pick

The beloved American classic about a young girl's coming-of-age at the turn of the twentieth century.

From the moment she entered the world, Francie Nolan needed to be made of stern stuff, for growing up in the Williamsburg slums of Brooklyn, New York demanded fortitude, precocity, and strength of spirit. Often scorned by neighbors for her family's erratic and eccentric behavior—such as her father Johnny's taste for alcohol and Aunt Sissy's habit of marrying serially without the formality of divorce—no one, least of all Francie, could say that the Nolans' life lacked drama.

By turns heartbreaking and uplifting, the Nolans' daily experiences are raw with honestly and tenderly threaded with family connectedness. Betty Smith has, in the pages of A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, captured the joys of humble Williamsburg life—from "junk day" on Saturdays, when the children traded their weekly take for pennies, to the special excitement of holidays, bringing cause for celebration and revelry. Smith has created a work of literary art that brilliantly captures a unique time and place as well as deeply resonant moments of universal experience. Here is an American classic that "cuts right to the heart of life," hails the New York Times. "If you miss A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, you will deny yourself a rich experience."

A PBS Great American Read Top 100 Pick

The beloved American classic about a young girl's coming-of-age at the turn of the twentieth century.

From the moment she entered the world, Francie Nolan needed to be made of stern stuff, for growing up in the Williamsburg slums of Brooklyn, New York demanded fortitude, precocity, and strength of spirit. Often scorned by neighbors for her family's erratic and eccentric behavior—such as her father Johnny's taste for alcohol and Aunt Sissy's habit of marrying serially without the formality of divorce—no one, least of all Francie, could say that the Nolans' life lacked drama.

By turns heartbreaking and uplifting, the Nolans' daily experiences are raw with honestly and tenderly threaded with family connectedness. Betty Smith has, in the pages of A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, captured the joys of humble Williamsburg life—from "junk day" on Saturdays, when the children traded their weekly take for pennies, to the special excitement of holidays, bringing cause for celebration and revelry. Smith has created a work of literary art that brilliantly captures a unique time and place as well as deeply resonant moments of universal experience. Here is an American classic that "cuts right to the heart of life," hails the New York Times. "If you miss A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, you will deny yourself a rich experience."

Available formats-
  • OverDrive Listen
  • OverDrive MP3 Audiobook
Languages:-
Copies-
  • Available:
    0
  • Library copies:
    1
Levels-
  • ATOS:
    5.8
  • Lexile:
    810
  • Interest Level:
    UG
  • Text Difficulty:
    3 - 4

Recommended for you

 
Awards-
About the Author-
  • Betty Smith (1896–1972) was a native of Brooklyn, New York. Her novels A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, Tomorrow Will Be Better, Joy in the Morning, and Maggie-Now continue to capture the hearts and imaginations of millions of readers worldwide.

Reviews-
  • AudioFile Magazine Betty Smith's sentimental favorite documents Francie Nolan's childhood and coming-of-age in a poor but loving family in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, in the first half of the twentieth century. Kate Burton's narration makes the story feel more dated than timeless, and her accents push the boundaries of authenticity. Still, she communicates the universality of Francie's childhood dreams, and the image of young Francie, sitting out on the fire escape, so close to a growing tree that she feels as if she is nestled in its branches, with a pillow and a glass of ice water, "at peace with the world and happy as only a little girl could be with a fine book and a little bowl of candies, and all alone in the house," rings true and somehow familiar. There's a reason this tale remains beloved after almost 50 years, and it stands with memoirs like ANGELA'S ASHES for its happy-ending triumph over a bad childhood. J.M.D 2002 Audie Award Finalist (c) AudioFile 2002, Portland, Maine
  • AudioFile Magazine Anyone who missed reading A Tree Grows in Brooklyn or who wants to know this moving story again should run, not walk, to the nearest source of this outstanding audiobook. The novel richly merits its status as a "classic." Francie, the protagonist, grows up in the slums of Brooklyn during the early part of the twentieth century, and life treats her badly. Less favored in her dysfunctional family than her brother, forced to leave school early, maltreated by fate and by people--she plunges forward, indomitable, courageous. What makes the listening experience so fine is the compelling and convincing narration by Bernadette Dunne, who not only has Francie down pat, but also captures the assorted other characters. She feels Francie's pain at the setbacks, her joy at the triumphs. And, as Francie matures, so does Dunne's presentation. Clearly Dunne was committed to creating something fine and, like Francie herself, she has. T.H. Winner of AUDIOFILE Earphones Award (c) AudioFile 2001, Portland, Maine
Title Information+
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    Caedmon
  • OverDrive Listen
    Release date:
  • OverDrive MP3 Audiobook
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  • OverDrive MP3 Audiobook
    Burn to CD: 
    Permitted
    Transfer to device: 
    Permitted
    Transfer to Apple® device: 
    Permitted
    Public performance: 
    Not permitted
    File-sharing: 
    Not permitted
    Peer-to-peer usage: 
    Not permitted
    All copies of this title, including those transferred to portable devices and other media, must be deleted/destroyed at the end of the lending period.

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A Tree Grows in Brooklyn
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn
Betty Smith
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