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The Weekend

Narrated by: Taylor Owynns
Length: 7 hrs and 45 mins
Categories: Fiction, Literary
3.5 out of 5 stars (118 ratings)

Non-member price: $25.82

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Publisher's Summary

From the Winner of the 2016 Stella Prize for The Natural Way of Things.   

Four older women have a lifelong friendship of the best kind: loving, practical, frank and steadfast. But when Sylvie dies, the ground shifts dangerously for the remaining three. Can they survive together without her? They are Jude, a once-famous restaurateur, Wendy, an acclaimed public intellectual, and Adele, a renowned actress now mostly out of work. 

Struggling to recall exactly why they've remained close all these years, the grieving women gather for Christmas at Sylvie's old beach house - not for festivities but to clean the place out before it is sold. Without Sylvie to maintain the group's delicate equilibrium, frustrations build and painful memories press in. 

Fraying tempers, an elderly dog, unwelcome guests and too much wine collide in a storm that brings long-buried hurts to the surface - and threatens to sweep away their friendship for good. 

The Weekend explores growing old and growing up and what happens when we're forced to uncover the lies we tell ourselves. Sharply observed and excruciatingly funny, this is a jewel of a book: a celebration of tenderness and friendship that is nothing short of a masterpiece.

©2019 Charlotte Wood (P)2019 W. F. Howes Ltd

Critic Reviews

“A compelling and vivid look at the friendships we make as women. Honest, unsettling and, like all good literature, had me asking questions about life and myself.” (Heather Rose, author of The Museum of Modern Love, winner of the 2017 Stella Prize) 

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

A great read!

Loved this story from beginning to end. Will make you re-think friends and friendships, aging and dying, life and living.

1 person found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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The weekend

Very disappointing read. I wish I hadn’t read it at all really. Dull dull dull. Won’t be reading anything of Charlotte woods again. Give me a murder anytime.

3 people found this helpful

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Not bad

Thought the story was a bit jumpy and kept "losing" what was happening. Failed to hold my interest so took a while to finish. The last part of the book was probably better and way more interesting than the beginning.

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    1 out of 5 stars
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Wake me up when it’s finished.

Most boring book I have ever listened to. Can’t believe this author won the Stella Prize.

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The weekend - review

Loved this book, what a wonderful story hope there is a sequel, thank you! Charlotte

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The Weekend

A great story with strong female characters. So good to listen to a story about older female relationships with all their flaws.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Could not quite believe

I found it very slow and could not believe these three women were life long friends. I love that there is a book about women's friendships, so I wanted to love it, but was sadly disappointed.

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Too much talk about the dog

I was really hoping to have insight into these valuable women but my god it was all about the old dog.
I got 3.5 hours in but couldn't take it anymore, not sure if it took a turn after that maybe I've missed the best part.
fingers crossed.

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Nice concept but surprisingly hollow

Excellent narration, strong premise let down by a resolution that felt as old and tired as the dog the author spends more time describing than the central characters. This book set out to to explore insights into ageing, the lies we tell ourselves, self growth, but failed to deliver anything new or fresh on these topics. Cliched and disappointing.

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Disappointing

I found this story disappointing. I think the depiction of older women was not accurate and a bit cliched. The friendships seemed to be based on friendships in a younger group and just transposed to the older group. Overall I think it was well intentioned but not well executed.

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  • Earnest
  • 16-12-2019

Potential not reached

I really welcomed the appearance of 4 different seeming characters in their final years. But then. So little. Perhaps because each person represented only a “one trick pony” the plot fell down a deeply repetitive hole.
If the old dog walked up and down once more I felt I would be moved to euthanize it myself and perhaps, well, all of them! And perhaps worst of all, the already irritating, paper thin characters didn’t hold to their given form so the final sections felt really unconvincing and melodramatic.
And the actor doing the reading. Clear diction but so much so much same, that it was often unclear when a different character was speaking/thinking/doing.