The Country of the Pointed Firs

Read by LibriVox Volunteers

(4.3 stars; 15 reviews)

The Country of the Pointed Firs (1896) is considered Jewett’s finest work, described by Henry James as her “beautiful little quantum of achievement.” Despite James’s diminutives, the novel remains a classic. Because it is loosely structured, many critics view the book not as a novel, but a series of sketches; however, its structure is unified through both setting and theme. Jewett herself felt that her strengths as a writer lay not in plot development or dramatic tension, but in character development. Indeed, she determined early in her career to preserve a disappearing way of life, and her novel can be read as a study of the effects of isolation and hardship on the inhabitants who lived in the decaying fishing villages along the Maine coast.
(summary from Gutenberg e-text) (4 hr 25 min)


The Return / Mrs. Todd 11:20 Read by Betsie Bush
The Schoolhouse 5:35 Read by Kara Shallenberg (1969-2023)
At the Schoolhouse Window 6:43 Read by Kara Shallenberg (1969-2023)
Captain Littlepage 14:19 Read by James Smith
The Waiting Place 13:56 Read by Frank
The Outer Island 6:57 Read by Stephan Gambke
Green Island 21:58 Read by Chip
William 6:58 Read by Michael Shook
Where Pennyroyal Grew 10:50 Read by Kara Shallenberg (1969-2023)
The Old Singers 8:04 Read by Patricia Oakley
A Strange Sail 13:44 Read by Marian Brown
Poor Joanna 20:15 Read by Marian Brown
The Hermitage 14:14 Read by Marian Brown
On Shell-heap Island 7:58 Read by Marian Brown
The Great Expedition 12:40 Read by Patricia Oakley
A Country Road 13:42 Read by Marian Brown
The Bowden Reunion 26:28 Read by Michael Shook
The Feast’s End 11:51 Read by Marian Brown
Along Shore 28:31 Read by Betsie Bush
The Backward View 9:20 Read by Betsie Bush


(3 stars)

Chapter 6 was inaudible at highest volume setting. Chapter 7 was read by a person with a heavy accent and was difficult to follow. Test of the readers were great.

(5 stars)

I love the descriptions of nature, the sea, family, and the passage of time. What makes life full? The people.

A summer vacation in a Maine coast town.

(3 stars)