Price: CDN$ 42.11

Membership details Membership details
  • A 30-day free trial and your first audiobook is free
  • After trial, get 1 credit each month good for any audiobook.
  • Exchange any audiobook you don’t like
  • Keep your audiobooks, even if you cancel
  • After your free trial, Audible is just CDN$ 14.95/month
OR
In Cart

Publisher's Summary

A finalist for the Governor General's Literary Award

A transformative and necessary work - as completely unexpected as it is inspired - by the award-winning author of the best-selling novels All My Puny Sorrows and A Complicated Kindness.

The sun rises on a quiet June morning in 2009. August Epp sits alone in the hayloft of a barn, anxiously bent over his notebook. He writes quickly, aware that his solitude will soon be broken. Eight women - ordinary grandmothers, mothers, and teenagers; yet to August, each one extraordinary - will climb the ladder into the loft, and the day's true task will begin. This task will be both simple and subversive: August, like the women, is a traditional Mennonite, and he has been asked to record a secret conversation. 

Thus begins Miriam Toews' spellbinding novel. Gradually, as we hear the women's vivid voices console, tease, admonish, regale, and debate each other, we piece together the reason for the gathering: they have 48 hours to make a life-altering choice on behalf of all the women and children in the colony. And like a vast night sky coming into view behind the bright sparks of their voices, we learn of the devastating events that have led to this moment. 

Acerbic, funny, tender, sorrowful, and wise, Women Talking is composed of equal parts humane love and deep anger. It is award-winning writer Miriam Toews' most astonishing novel to date, containing within its two short days and hayloft setting an expansive, timeless universe of thinking and feeling about women - and men - in our contemporary world.

©2018 Miriam Toews (P)2018 Knopf Canada

What the critics say

Women Talking is an astonishment, a volcano of a novel with slowly and furiously mounting pressures of anguish and love and rage. No other book I’ve read in the past year has spoken so lucidly about our current moment, and yet none has felt as timeless; the always-wondrous Miriam Toews has written a book as close to a Greek tragedy as a contemporary Western novelist can come.” (Lauren Groff, author of Fates and Furies and Florida)

“Miriam Toews’s Women Talking is a flawless, ferocious work of art . . . [An] illuminating quest to comprehend the most vital contours of the human experience: what is agency, what is meaning, what is justice, what is love. This is the kind of novel that changes you. Get ready.” (Laura van den Berg, author of The Third Hotel)

“I am in awe of this novel. In Toews’s brilliant design, eight women in a Mennonite hayloft tell a story that is terrifying, joyful, gruesome, and magnetic. What a reckoning - and what a gift.” (Leni Zumas, author of Red Clocks)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    75
  • 4 Stars
    23
  • 3 Stars
    12
  • 2 Stars
    7
  • 1 Stars
    6

Performance

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    67
  • 4 Stars
    30
  • 3 Stars
    9
  • 2 Stars
    2
  • 1 Stars
    2

Story

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    66
  • 4 Stars
    21
  • 3 Stars
    16
  • 2 Stars
    4
  • 1 Stars
    7
Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Slow but appropriately so

Great listen. The narrator was fantastic. The humour, humanity, and respect he conveyed with Toews words was illustrative. I grew up near a Mennnite community and know some Menonites so I felt what was reflected in the book was realistic and insightful.

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Painful subject, frustrating to listen to..

This is based on a true story about a large group of mennonite women who drugged and raped. The are told by the men the community that they must forgive the rapists and have to make a decision in 48 hours to stay and forgive, or leave. There is a lot of philosophical discussion between an oppressed group of women in a patriarchal religion. The narrator in the story is a man , and I find this makes it very irritating to listen to.
I read for relaxation and enjoyment so this is not a book for me and had to stop listening after 2 hours.

2 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Man reads "Women Talking"??!! - worst decision!

Couldn't even get into this audio book since it's written as a first person account of a woman sharing women talking about women being abused. I couldn't get into it as a man's voice read it to me. Ughhh who made such a terrible decision? Had to shut it off it was so annoying. I want a refund!

2 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Deliver Us From Evil

Thank you Ms Toews for this brave, fierce, tender, compassionate, insightful, timely book. Such a difficult story to tell. Such a clever yet humane structure to the novel. Such an excellent ear for dialogue. Brava. I hope Women Talking wins every award available. You deserve it.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • JB
  • 2018-09-18

Toews does it again

Having read Toews’ “A Complicated Kindness” and come out the other side heavy with emotion and haunted, I was excited to undertake this topic with Toews - a former Mennonite. At first I thought the books narrator/narrative would bother me, but I quickly became spellbound because of Toews’ gift for language and designing characters. I would highly recommend this book to others and would suggest giving it your full attention so you can dig more deeply into the story she weaves and topics she tackles. #Audible1

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

A powerful story

I wasn't sure what to expect from this story, but I have enjoyed Miriam Toews' other books so I took a chance. I was captivated by the story and the performance. It was sad, heartbreaking, funny and triumphant. This book did not disappoint! #Audible1

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Wow

Really interesting storytelling. Despite being about a heavy subject, this story did not depress me. It feels hopeful and beautiful.

3 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Miriam does not disappoint

I loved this book and the narration was great. These women are so resilient Definitely a must read in these times of #metoo.

1 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

First audible

Toews is a beautiful writer, however the plot was uneventful and dull. At times I felt like wanting to yell "just leave already".

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • KN
  • 2018-10-23

Everyone should read this book.

Everyone should read this. A measured and poignant exploration of what it means to be a woman in a highly patriarchal system.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

Sort by:
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • melanie l morton
  • 2018-10-19

short and interesting

I loved how short this story was and that it spanned over just a couple of days. Enjoyable story that gives you a glimpse into a different culture.

Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Anonymous User
  • 2018-12-11

Slow but appropriately so

Great listen. The narrator was fantastic. The humour, humanity, and respect he conveyed with Toews words was illustrative. I grew up near a Mennnite community and know some Menonites so I felt what was reflected in the book was realistic and insightful.

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars
  • catherine johnston
  • 2018-11-12

Painful subject, frustrating to listen to..

This is based on a true story about a large group of mennonite women who drugged and raped. The are told by the men the community that they must forgive the rapists and have to make a decision in 48 hours to stay and forgive, or leave. There is a lot of philosophical discussion between an oppressed group of women in a patriarchal religion. The narrator in the story is a man , and I find this makes it very irritating to listen to.
I read for relaxation and enjoyment so this is not a book for me and had to stop listening after 2 hours.

2 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • renee hope
  • 2018-10-22

Man reads "Women Talking"??!! - worst decision!

Couldn't even get into this audio book since it's written as a first person account of a woman sharing women talking about women being abused. I couldn't get into it as a man's voice read it to me. Ughhh who made such a terrible decision? Had to shut it off it was so annoying. I want a refund!

2 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Donna M. McFarlane
  • 2018-09-29

Deliver Us From Evil

Thank you Ms Toews for this brave, fierce, tender, compassionate, insightful, timely book. Such a difficult story to tell. Such a clever yet humane structure to the novel. Such an excellent ear for dialogue. Brava. I hope Women Talking wins every award available. You deserve it.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • JB
  • 2018-09-18

Toews does it again

Having read Toews’ “A Complicated Kindness” and come out the other side heavy with emotion and haunted, I was excited to undertake this topic with Toews - a former Mennonite. At first I thought the books narrator/narrative would bother me, but I quickly became spellbound because of Toews’ gift for language and designing characters. I would highly recommend this book to others and would suggest giving it your full attention so you can dig more deeply into the story she weaves and topics she tackles. #Audible1

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Shea Ellingham
  • 2018-09-17

A powerful story

I wasn't sure what to expect from this story, but I have enjoyed Miriam Toews' other books so I took a chance. I was captivated by the story and the performance. It was sad, heartbreaking, funny and triumphant. This book did not disappoint! #Audible1

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Danielle Hoefele
  • 2018-09-16

Wow

Really interesting storytelling. Despite being about a heavy subject, this story did not depress me. It feels hopeful and beautiful.

3 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Kathy
  • 2018-09-22

Miriam does not disappoint

I loved this book and the narration was great. These women are so resilient Definitely a must read in these times of #metoo.

1 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Amazon Customer
  • 2018-11-05

First audible

Toews is a beautiful writer, however the plot was uneventful and dull. At times I felt like wanting to yell "just leave already".

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • KN
  • 2018-10-23

Everyone should read this book.

Everyone should read this. A measured and poignant exploration of what it means to be a woman in a highly patriarchal system.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful