Friday, December 2, 2016

Audio Book Review ~ The Egg and I (Betty MacDonald Memoirs #1) by Betty MacDonald, Heather Henderson (Narrator)

The Egg and I
(Betty MacDonald Memoirs #1)
by Betty MacDonald, 
Narrator:  Heather Henderson
Publisher:  Post Hypnotic Press
Length:  9 hours (unabridged)
Audio Release Date:  May 28, 2015

When Betty MacDonald married a marine and moved to a small chicken farm on the Olympic Peninsula in Washington State, she was largely unprepared for the rigors of life in the wild. With no running water, no electricity, a house in need of constant repair, and days that ran from four in the morning to nine at night, the MacDonalds had barely a moment to put their feet up and relax. And then came the children. Yet through every trial and pitfall - through chaos and catastrophe - this indomitable family somehow, mercifully, never lost its sense of humor.

A beloved literary treasure for more than half a century, Betty MacDonald's The Egg and I is a heartwarming and uproarious account of adventure and survival on the American frontier.

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The Egg and I, written by Betty MacDonald, is entertaining, witty, heartening, and uplifting.  Ms. MacDonald took difficult times in her life and made them appear fun by utilizing witty and dry humor throughout. The good, the bad, and the ugly of married life on a chicken farm in the late 1920’s is written with such flare that even today I think some people will relate to some of the situations.

The Egg and I is narrated by Heather Henderson and she performed the story so well that I thought Betty MacDonald herself was sitting in my living room telling the story. Henderson’s voice is soothing and hypnotic and took an already great book to an utterly outstanding book! The ‘voice’ of Pa Kettle was perhaps my favorite, but the ‘voices’ of all the characters were distinctive and enjoyable to listen to. Ms. Henderson is a new narrator for me, but I will definitely search out more titles narrated by her in the future - especially the other books written by Betty MacDonald.

Overall, this was a fun book to listen to and I found myself laughing out loud throughout. The Egg and I is extremely well-written with charming and delightful characters and is one audio book that I will listen to again and again. 

Story – 4 stars
Performance – 5 stars
Overall – 4.5 stars

I received this audiobook as part of my participation in a blog tour with Audiobookworm Promotions. The tour is being sponsored by Post Hypnotic Press, Inc. The gifting of this audiobook did not affect my opinion of it.

Click HERE to listen to an Excerpt

Betty Bard MacDonald (1907–1958), the best-selling author of The Egg and I and the classic Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle children’s books, burst onto the literary scene shortly after the end of World War II. Readers embraced her memoir of her years as a young bride operating a chicken ranch on Washington’s Olympic Peninsula, andThe Egg and I sold its first million copies in less than a year. The public was drawn to MacDonald’s vivacity, her offbeat humor, and her irreverent take on life. In 1947, the book was made into a movie starring Fred MacMurray and Claudette Colbert, and spawned a series of films featuring MacDonald’s Ma and Pa Kettle characters.
MacDonald followed up the success of The Egg and I with the creation of Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle, a magical woman who cures children of their bad habits, and with three additional memoirs: The Plague and I (chronicling her time in a tuberculosis sanitarium just outside Seattle), Anybody Can Do Anything (recounting her madcap attempts to find work during the Great Depression), and Onions in the Stew (about her life raising two teenage daughters on Vashon Island).
Author Paula Becker was granted full access to Betty MacDonald’s archives, including materials never before seen by any researcher. Looking for Betty MacDonald, the first biography of this endearing Northwest storyteller, reveals the story behind the memoirs and the difference between the real Betty MacDonald and her literary persona.

Heather Henderson is a voice actress and audiobook narrator with a 20-year career in literary and performing arts.  Her narrations include the NYT bestseller (now also a feature film) Brain on Fire;  and Sharon Creech’s The Boy on the Porch, which won her an Earphones award and was named one of the Best Children’s Audiobooks for 2013 by Audiofile Magazine.   She earned her Doctor of Fine Arts degree at the Yale School of Drama, and is co-curator of, a pronunciation research site for the audiobook industry.  In 2015, Heather was a finalist for a Voice Arts Award (Outstanding Narration, Audiobook Classics), for her narration of Betty MacDonald’s The Egg and I

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