Audiobook Download

Jayber Crow

Series Port William
Author Wendell Berry
Narrator Paul Michael
Runtime 15 Hrs - Unabridged
Publisher christianaudio Fiction
Downloads ZIP M4B MP3
Release Date December 29, 2006
Availability: Unrestricted (available worldwide)

From the simple setting of his own barber shop, Jayber Crow, orphan, seminarian, and native of Port William, recalls his life and the life of his community as it spends itself in the middle of the twentieth century. Surrounded by his friends and neighbors, he is both participant and witness as the community attempts to transcend its own decline.

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From the simple setting of his own barber shop, Jayber Crow, orphan, seminarian, and native of Port William, recalls his life and the life of his community as it spends itself in the middle of the twentieth century.

Surrounded by his friends and neighbors, he is both participant and witness as the community attempts to transcend its own decline. And meanwhile Jayber learns the art of devotion and that a faithful love is its own reward.

Warning, this book contains strong or potentially offensive language.

27 Reviews Add Review

Customer Reviews 27 item(s)

This is one of my new favorite books.
Review by / (Posted on 4/25/2015)
This is one of my new favorite books.
Review by / (Posted on 4/25/2015)
Dumb book
Clean book, but decidedly not Christian. Dumb premise and long, tedious reading to get to a nothing ending.
Review by / (Posted on 8/15/2014)
Too much profanity
Too much profanity and seemed to glorify sin.
Review by / (Posted on 7/28/2014)
Waste of 15 hours - not Christian
Be aware that there is mild profanity peppered through-out.

The main character's Christianity is less than luke-warm. The main theme seems to be his love for a married woman whom he cannot have. He has flings with a barmaid along the way.

Secondarily is his preference for bootlegger style of economics and strong anti-war mind set.

The author continued to introduce new characters up intil the very end of the book. He could have cut the volume in half, if he had focussed on his love for the married woman, and got rid of 3/4 of the characters.

Review by / (Posted on 6/18/2014)
This is the first book I've read by Wendell Berry. Although I am not accustomed to this sort of genre, generally being more attracted to suspense and thrillers, I found Jaber Crow to be quite a remarkable piece of work. Having said that, I recognize that it is certainly not a book for everybody. The narrative is lazy and sometimes uneventful, but intentionally so. It made me think of the film, The Straight Story.

Even though it wasn't the kind of story that evoked compelling interest in a page turning frenzy to get to the ending, I was however aroused to return, by the curious nature of the character and his musings. In the end I found myself going back and listening to the ending again and again. It literally haunted me for days to come. It caused me to consider myself and reconsider the value I place on others, especially my wife. To me, that was what was so remarkable about the whole story. All I could do was sit there and cry as I drove my semi-truck down the highway, I just couldn't help my self.

Some of the issues that are dealt with include, modernization, pacifism, love, loss and fidelity. After reading the book, I checked out the author's bio. I too was once a pacifist, but have come to reject it on the same Biblical grounds that he supports it, that being the command to love one's neighbor.

I can't say I will read more of Berry's books. It is most certainly one of those books one has to be in the mood for.
Review by / (Posted on 6/6/2014)
Pearls of Wisdom in a haystack
This book was long, drawn out, and for a great while I was even wondering why it was being offered by a Christian site. The main character was not a good model for a Christian. He asks questions that will make you wonder and doubt your own faith.

However, towards the end, there are two chapters where the author and main character answers his own faith questions and doubts in a remarkable way, there is really good theology in it, which makes it nearly worth listening to the whole rest of the book. I say 'nearly,' that is for the individual to decide if it really is worth it. You would also need either a lot of patience, curiosity and/or an interest in what life was like back 100 years ago and how it all changes with the coming of Progress. If you have that, the book is worth it in itself without the sparse theology moments.
Review by / (Posted on 1/21/2014)
once you get into it
I agree, you must be patient. But if you are patient enough, you'll get into the story and it'll just be a joy to have your thoughts set on smth completely different. it's a touching story.
Review by / (Posted on 11/30/2013)
No Excitement
I couldn't listen for that long. I gave it an hour so I gave it a chance, but it just goes on about stuff that doesn't contain much excitement. Just a lot of events that a barber talks about.
Review by / (Posted on 11/6/2013)
relaxing read
This is just a fun book to listen to.
Review by / (Posted on 10/25/2013)
Beautifully written and beautifully read. Loved every minute of it!
Review by / (Posted on 9/20/2013)
Great book
Good flowing story. The end was a little abrupt.
Review by / (Posted on 8/30/2013)
Not so good
the bad language was too much for me.
Review by / (Posted on 8/16/2013)
Pure Audio Delight
Wedell Barry's evocation of rural Kentucky life conveys a perfect combination of Thoreau and the Bible, with a ton of backwoods humor thrown in. What makes this version so enjoyable, however, is Paul Michael's reading of the text. He renders the nuances of Kentucky with a perfect cadence–deadpan humor, little colloquialisms (well!), jokes (good, good, good), and differences in character intonations. I forgot it was a book and entered completely into Jayber Crow's flow of thought.
Review by / (Posted on 8/12/2013)
Poignant and Well-Written
Don't expect your average Christian novel. There are smatterings of profanity, drinking and womanizing. BUT they are only a small part of a wonderful story of how a young orphan boy finds his way in the community of Port William, Kentucky. The book expresses Jayber's honest struggles with his faith and shows how he comes to peace with the mysteries of Christianity. Not at all preachy. A beautiful story that is narrated well by Paul Michael.
Review by / (Posted on 8/12/2013)
Too long, rambling. I would not recommend to my enemy
Review by / (Posted on 8/7/2013)
Nice and comfortable
Not a heavy or action-packed book, but a nice, comfortable read. Makes me smile.
Review by / (Posted on 8/5/2013)
Wonderfully descriptive
I thought this book was wonderfully descriptive and predictable. However, just because one has the role of disciple, does not guarantee salvation. I'm not sure why this book is part of Christian audio. If I learned anything it was to be more patient, enjoy what one has and go slower.

I guess this book just wasn't for me, I felt more for the lost woodland (because trees/woodlands are a great peace to me.)

This is my first book from Wendell Berry. From other reviews, I find that he may be a poet. I desire to find them b/c it surely shows in his descriptive powers in this book and was my main enjoyment of it.
Review by / (Posted on 8/3/2013)
A wonderful book. Well written and narrated. Recommend this book highly.
A Must Read!!!
Review by / (Posted on 7/26/2013)
A gentle work.
Jayber Crow is a slow, gentle work, much as its title character. On the surface it's the tale of one man's life who never amounted to much -- a town barber, janitor and grave digger. But deeper down it;'s a spiritual book -- a book about heaven, as Jayber puts it -- about ceasing to strive, to want, to grasp. Author Wendell Berry has a lot to say about the Bible, Jesus, salvation and the Kingdom, almost all of which I agree with. Berry often goes on wide rambles talking about farming and this personality or that from the Port William, Ky., area. But overtime, you learn to sit back and just enjoy the conversation, as though you were sitting in Jayber's barbershop with the rest of the boys. As you listen (I obtained this book through, which is offering it free in the month of July), you can't help but be amazed by Berry's attention detail and backstory. He must have a story for every person who's ever lived in the fictional port William. To illustrate, in the story about the hog slaughter, Berry names every one of the dozen or more hog killers and at least an equal number of the "Regulators" who break up the butchering, leading you to believe that he has a story to share about each one of them -- and their wives, their children and their ancestors to boot. This is my first Wendell Berry novel and I can't wait to read more. happens to be offering some other of his novels for less than $5 this month.
Review by / (Posted on 7/16/2013)
Too much cussing for me
I couldn't get past the vulgarity to appreciate the story. I saw the warning but guess I thought I could bypass it. Wondering why Christian Audio has a book with cussing to begin with.
Review by / (Posted on 7/11/2013)
Storytelling as it Should Be
Jayber Crow was my first encounter with a Wendell Berry novel, and what and encounter it was. Berry has the ability to tell stories in a way that does not merely convey information, but emotion, philosophy and faith.

The many characters are drawn so beautifully that it is hard to believe that they did not really live. They are human in every way - they are full of faults and struggles, yet they stir love in the reader/hearer because they are described with honesty and grace.

I miss the community of Port William. Finishing this book left me with an ache in my heart - both because of the beauty of the ending, and because I had to leave the town and its people.
Review by / (Posted on 7/11/2013)
Paul Michael effectively portrays Crow's complexities and contradictions
Jayber Crow, town barber in Port William, Ky., recounts his life journey, which parallels the decline of sustainable agriculture throughout rural America. The agrarian threads also run through the novel's romantic triangle, in which Crow pines for the heart of the gracious and beautiful Mattie Chapman, whose ambitious “agribusinessman” husband, Troy, embodies the antithesis of Crow's sacred devotion to nature. Veteran narrator Paul Michael effectively portrays Crow's complexities and contradictions as both an insider at the hub of community life and a self-sufficient loner who eschews the material comforts and conveniences of the modern age. As Crow and his friends feast on fried catfish and corn pone at a “water-drinking party,“ Michael's whimsical imitation of the “good, good, good” sound of a moonshine whiskey jug evokes a wistful connection to the joyous simple pleasures of a contemplative existence. Michael's deliberate pronunciation of hard consonant sounds as Crow repeatedly scoffs at the machine-like momentum of “the war” and “the economy” may seem heavy-handed. Yet Berry's activism informs his storytelling, so listeners familiar with his body of work should not be surprised by the political edge.
Review by / (Posted on 1/6/2011)
This was my first Wendell Berry...
This was my first Wendell Berry book. I grew up in a small town and have always enjoyed books that are able to capture the feel. This one does it very well. I especially liked the progression of Jayber's faith throuh the years.
Review by / (Posted on 9/1/2010)
Wendell Berry's novel is by turns...
Wendell Berry's novel is by turns funny, poignant, and thought-provoking. The performance in this audiobook by Paul Michael is wonderfully done and brings the different characters to life.
Review by / (Posted on 12/8/2009)
The celebrated novelist and poet...
The celebrated novelist and poet returns to Port William, Kentucky, to tell the story of Jayber Crow, town barber. He is wonderfully performed by the talented Paul Michael. A one-time seminary student, Jayber now sits in his barber chair and watches the changes in his once agrarian world, espousing a Christian philosophy that is both ancient and fresh. Narrator Michael goes easy on the rural accents and handles the passages of life lessons with professionalism and grace. Michael allows his voice to age as the story pulls listeners deeper and deeper into Jayber's quiet, unassuming life. Highlights include an unrequited love affair, eventually fulfilled just as life is drawing to a close. R.O. © AudioFile 2007, Portland, Maine
Review by / (Posted on 12/7/2007)
Another poignant southern masterpiece brought to...
Another poignant southern masterpiece brought to life with a lively reading by Paul Michael. Sometimes hilarious, always insightful, this is a gem of a story! Just try not to laugh when Jayber attends his first "worter dranking party" or describes the old men clearing their throats while he shaves them in the barber chair...! A good read!
Review by / (Posted on 4/11/2007)