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The Dutch House

A Novel
Written by: Ann Patchett
Narrated by: Tom Hanks
Length: 9 hrs and 53 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (383 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Audiobook performed by Tom Hanks.

From the New York Times best-selling author of Commonwealth and State of Wonder comes Ann Patchett’s most powerful novel to date: a richly moving story that explores the indelible bond between two siblings, the house of their childhood, and a past that will not let them go. The Dutch House is the story of a paradise lost, a tour de force that digs deeply into questions of inheritance, love, and forgiveness, of how we want to see ourselves, and of who we really are.

At the end of the Second World War, Cyril Conroy combines luck and a single canny investment to begin an enormous real estate empire, propelling his family from poverty to enormous wealth. His first order of business is to buy the Dutch House, a lavish estate in the suburbs outside of Philadelphia. Meant as a surprise for his wife, the house sets in motion the undoing of everyone he loves.

The story is told by Cyril’s son Danny, as he and his older sister, the brilliantly acerbic and self-assured Maeve, are exiled from the house where they grew up by their stepmother. The two wealthy siblings are thrown back into the poverty their parents had escaped from and find that all they have to count on is one another. It is this unshakable bond between them that both saves their lives and thwarts their futures.

Set over the course of five decades, The Dutch House is a dark fairy tale about two smart people who cannot overcome their past. Despite every outward sign of success, Danny and Maeve are only truly comfortable when they’re together. Throughout their lives, they return to the well-worn story of what they’ve lost with humor and rage. But when at last they’re forced to confront the people who left them behind, the relationship between an indulged brother and his ever-protective sister is finally tested.

©2019 Ann Patchett (P)2019 HarperCollins Publishers

What the critics say

"Tom Hanks narrates this novel about Danny and Maeve, and their beloved childhood home, The Dutch House, with a restraint that admirably captures the writing's surface calm and buried tension.... Hanks takes his narrative cue from Danny, who tells the story in a mix of bemusement, wonder, and nostalgia. It's not a dramatic performance but is, instead, a sensitive and warm reading of a fine novel about love, loyalty, redemption, forgiveness, and what we will do to make the world the way we want it to be." (AudioFile Magazine)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

My heart could just burst!!!!

If you are scrolling through the reviews deciding if you want to use a credit for this novel, I’m telling you now this story is worth 3 credits.

It will be the book I give all my friends this Christmas.

I hope you love it like I have!! Xx

11 of 11 people found this review helpful

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  • BDC
  • 2019-10-13

Such a well written and developed story

I grew to love these characters, all of them, even the evil step mother at the end. Maeve and Danny are the main characters, the story starts with them as children in a wondrous architectural marvel of a house - The Dutch House, named for the wealthy Dutch family that designed and built it. The house ultimately holds all the secrets to this family's undoing, it affects every person differently, not in any mystical way, just because of its opulence and lavish appeal. Not everyone sees it the same or feels the same. Maeve is a strong and loyal sister to Danny but a force not many others can handle. Danny clings to Maeve like a life raft but starts to find his own way. It's so well written and descriptive, I felt very connected to the characters, right down to what they might wear. A lot of sadness throughout that affects you as the reader, right to your core because is relatable sadness - divorce, illness, broken relationships, generational apathy.

I wasn't sure I would like Tom Hanks as the single narrator but he has found a way to the top of my list of narrators. It is a pleasure to listen to. I genuinely hope he narrates more.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

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It felt like Ann wrote this story for Tom Hanks to read!

I love Ann Patchett’s writing and I was waiting for this novel. I bought it yesterday and just finished listening! I was pleased to realize Tom Hanks was the narrator and he did a wonderful job! I feel sorry for anyone who reads this book the conventional; way he was that good. I could tell that he really enjoyed reading it and I think he must be an admirer of Ann’s. As he should be!!!

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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loved every minute

Ann has such a wonderful imagination. Tom Hanks was perfect. I highly recommend this book.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Disappointed

I waited and waited for a climax or a plot twist... it was just a story about a brother a sister and a house. It was underwhelming. Hopefully I can return it and get my credit back. Tom Hanks is a good narrator.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Wonderful Storyteller

Enjoyed the story, the strong characters, the unique setting, elaborate detail and powerful emotions. Ann Patchett is a wonderful storyteller. Tom Hanks is an excellent narrator.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Do yourself a favour

It's been a long time since I loved a book.
Honestly I think Tom Hanks' performance on this one really makes it. The story is really not about the house but all the people in it. Love, forgiveness, understanding, and identity are underlying themes in a story told by the brilliant Hanx.
I could visualize the whole story. It wasn't long winded. Every detail mattered. Bravo!
Ive finished today and I don't think I'll stop thinking about this for a while...

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Not my typical read but I Loved it!

This was actually something different for me- a fiction novel that wasn't about anything in particular, just the characters' lives. I ended up SO attached to all of them by the end though! Fantastic story! I'd also like to request that Tom Hanks reads all my bedtime stories from now on.

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I love the storyteller!

I wasnt sure Id like it at first but it drew me in quickly. I love Tom's voice and I quickly couldnt put it down.
The story of a generation of a family, well told.

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Loved the performance

I just kept on listening mesmerized by the voice
The story was like a normal day in any bodies life.
Like peeking through a key hole, watching these lives just tugging along. But I kept on reading,knowing what the end would be. The strangest book I have ever read.

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  • Penny Mann
  • 2019-09-25

Tom Hanks Should Read Every Book

Turns out there is only one way to make a Patchett book even better - have Tom Hanks read it. Wonderful story, endearing in and of itself... made more alive with the mastery of Hanks’ delivery.

75 of 81 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2019-09-26

Magnificent

Tom Hanks’ narration takes this beautiful story to the next level. I honestly don’t know what I’m going to download next as this has spoiled me....

63 of 68 people found this review helpful

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  • teaman
  • 2019-09-26

Amazing

I listened in one sitting. One of my favorite authors, narrated by one of the best living actors. How can you go wrong?

47 of 51 people found this review helpful

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  • J A Darby
  • 2019-09-25

Easy listening

This is the perfect story for Tom Hank's voice. can not image anyone else doing it. Found this to be a well paced story with interesting people. Highly recommended.

59 of 65 people found this review helpful

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  • Robert
  • 2019-10-03

Wonderful listen

The book was moving. The reading warm and comforting.

Great novel. I’m going to read the novel now and simply enjoy it once again.

46 of 51 people found this review helpful

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  • Lillian Holsenback
  • 2019-10-04

Great story, awesome narrator

Thoroughly enjoyed this novel. Very well written and a captivating story. The narrator, Tom Hanks, brought this story to life and kept my attention even through the slower moments.

44 of 49 people found this review helpful

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  • Colleen
  • 2019-10-06

Excellent!

I just spent a few days with Tom Hanks and he read me this great story. I always wanted a younger brother and now I wish he was it, or at least the character of Danny was it! This was an excellent story, one that I hated to see end.

54 of 61 people found this review helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 2019-10-03

Just WOW!

This is such an amazing book. And if you dont know all ready its narrated by Tom Hanks who does a great job.

I normally listen to my audiobooks a few hours b4 bed but this one I stayed up until I couldnt stay awake any longer. As quick as I opened my eyes I popped in my earbuds and began again. You will giggle and get so mad and in the end, well, lets just say, have your kleenix ready!

37 of 42 people found this review helpful

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  • Carol
  • 2019-10-03

The Dutch House review

Tom Hanks was the best narrator I’ve listened to! The book was outstanding. Please consider hiring Mr. Hanks for additional books.

30 of 34 people found this review helpful

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  • k teed
  • 2019-10-03

4.37 stars

Patchett is one of my favorite authors, so I’m probably a bit biased, but I liked this audiobook a lot. That being said, if someone else had written this, I may not have liked it as much I did. I wouldn't have went in to it knowing I was going to finish whether it captured my attention or not. Luckily, that wasn't the case

It may not be her best novel, but average Patchett is still better than most (not that this novel is average). The Dutch House seems like a work for those who are already Ann Patchett fans, rather than a place to start with her work. Still, it's another great novel by a great writer, and Tom Hanks does a great job narrating it.

4.37 stars

51 of 60 people found this review helpful