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The Cows

Length: 11 hrs and 41 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (127 ratings)
Non-member price: $25.82
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Publisher's Summary

Shortlisted for best audiobook in the Specsavers National Book Awards 2018.

The Sunday Times best seller.

Fearlessly frank and funny, the debut adult novel from Dawn O’Porter needs to be talked about. 

This audiobook contains an audio exclusive Q&A with author Dawn O’Porter.

COW [n.] /kaʊ/ A piece of meat; born to breed; past its sell-by-date; one of the herd.

Women don’t have to fall into a stereotype.

The Cows is a powerful novel about three women. In all the noise of modern life, each needs to find their own voice.

It’s about friendship and being female.

It’s bold and brilliant.

It’s searingly perceptive.

It's about never following the herd.

And everyone is going to be talking about it.

©2017 Dawn O'Porter (P)2017 HarperCollins Publishers Limited

Critic Reviews

"A funny, smart, kind, incredibly truthful book about women...all the shame, judgement, envy and love that being alive and female entails." (Polly Vernon)

"Smart and insightful." (RED)   

"Dawn's writing is addictive - fearless, beyond feisty and seriously funny." (Mel Giedroyc)   

"Funny and excruciating. You'll think about it for weeks!" (Kristen Wiig)   

"I loved it. Funny, moving, twisty.... Wow! I couldn't stop reading it." (Jill Mansell) 

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What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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Incredible

I'm sad I've finished it and I can't wait to read more from Dawn O'Porter.

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Binge worthy. Surprising. Thoroughly enjoyable.

Already ordered mutliple copies as Christmas presents. Lovely to actually relate to these characters. Thank you to the Guilty Feminist Podcast for plugging the book and well done Dawn.

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Brilliant - loved it

Love love love .... worth reading - love Dawn O’porter - very enjoyable and great narration - great hearing Dawns voice

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First review after reading 100s of books

I just had to review this!! I listened to this as an audio book and I’m so glad I did. Absolutely fantastic, did not want it to end. First book I have genuinely laughed out loud. Feel good book that makes you realise how amazing women really are without being too feministic.

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New favourite!

Exciting, funny, modern and relatable- it’s brilliant
A must read and I will read again and again

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Really enjoyable read

One of the narrators pronounces says as "say-s" (rather than sez) . Quite off putting! But otherwise really good.

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READ THIS BOOK!!

OMG, this is brilliant- I recommend the audiobook however I’m sure that any version will resonate, make you laugh, teary & grateful for who or whatever your ‘herd’ may be. Cheers Dawn.

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The novel of my generation.

Every woman, whether she is single or couple, a mother or childless, should read - or listen to - this book. The intwined storyline draws you into the world of Camilla, Tara and Stella. The storyline is happy and sad, funny and heartbreaking all at the same time. I laughed out loud, cringed uncomfortably and cried hysterically.

To me, this book is the novel of my generation - the way it tells the story of females in a modern world is worthy of all the praise I can conjure.

I loved it.

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LOVED it!!!!!

Highly recommend this book. Audio was amazing and really made the whole experience for me.

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Loved it!

From cover to cover I loved every minute of this book! I laughed, cried, cringed and blushed. I'd never read anything from Dawn O'Porter before but i will be eagerly awaiting her next book!

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  • Mark
  • 05-11-2017

Smart, funny, feminist

I learned about this one after the author was on The Guilty Feminist podcast. Like that show, the book is smart and funny and examines the hypocrisies and insecurities that undermine efforts to be feminist. The writing operates in the vicinity of “Bridget Jones” and Liane Moriarty. The book revolves mostly around the idea of whether society allows 42-year-old moms to be sexual beings, after a main character’s private moment is caught on video and becomes a viral sensation. I’d read some reviews that things went too far, and I'll admit I was yelling “no, no, no!” when one of the characters did something seemingly unforgivable. But the power-of-sisterhood ending was perfect. Grade: A-

P.S. The audio version has three different narrators, including the author, and all are great.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • PollyAnna2
  • 12-01-2018

Absolutely Loved it!!!

Really fantastic writing! Witty, relatable and totally engaging.
The narration was stellar by all three characters as well.
Will definitely be looking forward to more from this author!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • ROBIN
  • 20-04-2017

I listened to it anyway...

One of the reviews I read for this book said "cringe-worthy", and shortly into the story I realized it absolutely IS cringe-worthy... but I am SO glad I listened to it anyway! This book is unlike any I have ever read or listened to, and I am so glad that I didn't miss out. I cringed, I laughed out loud more than once, I found myself almost in tears at one point, and now I'm sad that it's over, but happy that I read it. Easily 5 stars

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Michael
  • 06-08-2018

Don't judge a book by the title!

This book is enlightening and interesting. The characters are incredibly deep and their intersectionality is subtle and well done. This is a story of feminism thru and thru. The title is explained in the beginning, but not necessarily does the theme come to fruition. I highly recommend you get it despite the title. Oh, and I usually don't like authors narrating, but in this case I couldn't tell you which character was hers -- they were all of high caliber and talented!

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  • Stefanie
  • 13-03-2018

So much love and resonance I have goose flesh!

Such a wonderfully current reflection on feminism, media, judgement, life.. I am a big fan of surprises, so I won't say anything about the plot because it's full of little twists and turns that kept me gasping, laughing, and crying "no!" The narrators are all fantastic. I can't believe I had never heard of this book before. I will be sure to make sure my loved ones aren't left in the dark - this is a must read! I feel entertained, uplifted, and empowered.

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  • K80
  • 27-07-2017

Fabulous

This is the most riveting book I've read in ages! Well done! Thought it was wonderful.

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  • Amazon34678
  • 31-05-2017

Highly recommend, one of my favorites

Fantastic plot and character development, important messages in the content. Really loved this book! Go for it!

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Ruth F. Greenberg
  • 21-04-2017

Light yet poignant and completely engaging

A really good read that is well written and well-narrated. I highly recommend this very contemporary, funny, a little bit outrageous, engaging read that seems like a light "chick-flick" in book form but is actually an edgy feminist tale.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Hippynat
  • 24-05-2017

Awesome

Feminism how it should be, honest and gory in its detail ( but not in a horrid way!) it was really well written and (key) really well read by different actors and Dawn - I haven't been able to stop listening! I've enjoyed it immensely and cannot wait for more by Dawn. I loved her other books (though I'm definitely not a teenager) but this was more realistic and I felt really connected to the characters.Such a gem of a book I'd recommend it to women and men such a breathe a fresh air from chick lit. Go read it 😊

16 of 17 people found this review helpful

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  • Sue Two
  • 09-07-2017

Fantastic book well done Dawn

Gripping and full of amazing insight , absolutely loved it and the honesty she writes with. Great female characters bring the story to life and tackle some very real issues facing all modern women today.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • MISS
  • 03-05-2017

Best book I've listened to for years!

This book had me gripped right from the start. The characters are all likeable and have their own very different stories which end up cleverly interwoven. Every woman should read this book - can't wait for her to write another!

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

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  • Mrs Hannah
  • 07-06-2017

Good all round.

Good book but a little long in places. I would recommend this book how ever it's a little to far fetched in places. But worth a read.

9 of 11 people found this review helpful

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  • Mel Chambers
  • 02-06-2017

Totally fab, listen now!

Great, you'll love it. Readers/voices are excellent. Unexpected twists, very funny too. Definitely worth it.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • N
  • 19-05-2017

Brilliant book, I couldn't turn it off

This is a great, funny intimate companion of a book. I'm recommending it to all my femal friends.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Beth Jones
  • 07-07-2017

My favourite Audible listen so far! By a mile!

And there have been loads, trust me! Truly excellent and delivered on every level. A must listen for anyone.

6 of 8 people found this review helpful

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  • hollye
  • 19-04-2017

Fantastic!

I have been telling everyone I know about this fantastic book! I laughed, I wept, and above all I thought: this book is a wonderful window into the idiosyncrasies of womanhood, and the complex relationships we have with each other and ourselves. One of the best books I've picked up in a very long time. Dawn O'Porter's writing is witty, moving, and thought-provoking, and the narration is perfectly suited to the story. If in doubt, definitely give this a listen.

6 of 8 people found this review helpful

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  • Sara Mitchell
  • 22-09-2017

Unintelligent

I found this book quite an interesting read, not least as its content and lack of any intelligent input completely were not in accordance with the descriptions of it as a best seller.
I think I wrote something on an equally intellectual scale at the appx age of 14 for my English homework which my mother promptly tore up when she read it.
I think pizza smelling farts and masturbation just about sums it up!
I feel sad for the women this is supposed to appeal to as makes them look totally stupid!
Maybe I'm just getting old.

10 of 14 people found this review helpful

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  • Isobel
  • 15-08-2018

Surprised I enjoyed this book!

This was not a promising book for me, as there is not a lot of modern fiction that impresses me, I do not like swearing, and probably due to my advanced age I do not particularly revel in discussing sexual matters. Having said all of which, I think this book was enjoyable, very well-written and communicated the dilemmas, feelings and lives of its main characters very well indeed. I forgave it the liberal use of bad language as I do appreciate that it has its place and the context carried it off. There were one or two elements that were a bit difficult to accept such as the public revelation of Camilla's condition, the use by Stella of her "public" work email address for her nefarious purposes and the forwarding of Stella's fatal email by Camilla - I found these slightly irritating as none of them is likely to have occurred, but then these things were all needed to knit the plot together and the story was otherwise beautifully constructed. Let's face it - the ending was what we all hoped which may be a bit cheesy but after you have suffered so much with these characters through the development of the plot you really do deserve the gift of a satisfying ending! I did not always admire the feminist outpourings as they were sometimes a little trite and less than fully thought out but since they fitted the character who was responsible for them I tried not to examine the quality of the philosophy too closely. The book did deal with some very genuine women's issues and some very human ones. I found the examination of female friendships particularly fascinating, touching and well done.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful