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No Walls and the Recurring Dream

A Memoir
Written by: Ani DiFranco
Narrated by: Ani DiFranco
Length: 11 hrs and 26 mins
5 out of 5 stars (16 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

A NEW YORK TIMES BEST SELLER

"A memoir as fierce, freewheeling, and passionate as her music." (O, The Oprah Magazine

A memoir by the celebrated singer-songwriter and social activist Ani DiFranco

In her new memoir, No Walls and the Recurring Dream, Ani DiFranco recounts her early life from a place of hard-won wisdom, combining personal expression, the power of music, feminism, political activism, storytelling, philanthropy, entrepreneurship, and much more into an inspiring whole. In these frank, honest, passionate, and often funny stories is the tale of one woman's eventful and radical journey to the age of 30. Ani's coming of age story is defined by her ethos of fierce independence - from being an emancipated minor sleeping in a Buffalo bus station, to unwaveringly building a career through appearances at small clubs and festivals, to releasing her first album at the age of 18, to consciously rejecting the mainstream recording industry and creating her own label, Righteous Babe Records. In this audiobook, as in life, she never hesitates to question established rules and expectations, maintaining a level of artistic integrity that has inspired and challenged more than a few. Ani continues to be a major touring and recording artist as well as a celebrated activist and feminist, standing as living proof that you can overcome all personal and societal obstacles to be who you are and to follow your dreams.

©2019 Ani DiFranco (P)2019 Penguin Audio

What the critics say

"The Grammy-winning [Ani DiFranco] recounts the eventful story of her life as a musician and feminist political activist.... Interspersed throughout with feminist/political musings and anecdotes about such music legends as Pete Seeger, Prince, and Bob Dylan, DiFranco's tale celebrates both independent music and an unconventional life daringly lived. A refreshingly frank and free-spirited memoir from a feminist icon." (Kirkus Reviews)

"[DiFranco] makes her literary debut in this powerful reflection on her life and career.... Throughout, DiFranco writes of her self-doubts and romantic hardships.... Honest and passionate, DiFranco's memoir will resonate with her many fans." (Publishers Weekly)

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  • Overall
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  • Tobin
  • 2019-05-14

A lovely peek under the hood

I've been a fan of Ani D's music since 1996 when I was just 16. Like, bigly. It was a treat and a pleasure to get to hear about her life, out of song and poem form. I loved learning about her life as a child, her parents, her friendships, and her relationship to her music, her songwriting process, her touring support and the friendships that flowed forth. Her perspective is one I treasure and I found myself smiling throughout. One thing that I did find offputting was that she sorta left us hangin', choosing, for her own reasons, I'm sure, to stop at something like 2001, what, wha?! So much has happened in her life and music since then, it felt strange to be left there. Ahh well, Ani, as a photographer who captured a dozen of your shows and a deeply devoted fan, you eluded me every time I thought "this will finally be the time I get to meet her" and so you've eluded me here, again, too. Enjoy!

4 people found this helpful

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  • KnA
  • 2019-05-14

Lyrical behind the scenes honesty

Ani has been my travelling companion in life for over 20 years. I so loved the opportunity to sit down and almost feel like I'm having coffee and deep conversation with a good friend. It was lovely to know her mind better in her own voice.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Andrew Hampton
  • 2019-07-14

Beware: Only covers her life until 2001

I was disappointed that Ani didn’t include the last ~17 years of her life. Evolving tech, two decades of politics plus her becoming a parent were some of the things I highly anticipated with this book.

If you’ve been listening to Ani since the early days, you’ll know most of this book as she was so honest in her songwriting. This book adds a bit more depth on the songs, the tours and the people who helped her make it all happen up to 2001. But don’t expect to learn how she’s been evolving since.

2 people found this helpful

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  • minsley
  • 2019-05-07

Phenomenal audio book. I'm touched by her story. .

Her delivery is amazing. Highly recommended. Should be a best seller. Award worthy. I'll listen again.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 2020-02-10

Lovely truth

Ani seduces you in like her music and story telling. This time of who she really is. I love to get real accounts and learn alongside her recap of what she has become, and where she is going. Lovely. Thank you for sharing! Buy it.

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  • Robin Lilly
  • 2020-01-08

if I hadn't loved her already

I loved learning more about this artist I have followed lovingly since 1993. Hearing it from her own mouth, in her own voice, made it even more special. Thank you for sharing a bit more of your life, goddess!

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  • Jess C.
  • 2019-11-30

Thought provoking and inspiring

Loved this book and hearing Ani’s voice narrate her stories. What a treat. So insightful and comforting and also a call to action. I loved every minute of it.

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  • A. Glynn
  • 2019-11-27

Insightful into her perspective

Ani Defranco is usually characterized by her feminist and “damn the man” ideology, but this deep and intimate glimpse of the world behind her eyes solidifies her place in the world of poetry and unassuming leadership. I feel more connected to her true self than ever, and her voice carried me through the “making of” the public and private persona of this rebel with a cause. She is ultimately human and her female strength makes her an author of a unique and thoughtful human experience. (Thank you, Ani, for your truth.)

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  • Anonymous User
  • 2019-10-15

always an inspiration

Thank you Ani for yet another wonderful and inspiring piece of work. I look forward to the next.

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  • Kirsten M Johnson
  • 2019-10-04

A beautiful journey

Ani's music was the soundtrack to my life for nearly two decades. What a gift to hear the stories behind the songs in this open hearted and honest memoir.