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Publisher's Summary

The basis for the classic film starring James Dean, Elizabeth Taylor, and Rock Hudson, Giant is Pulitzer Prize-winning author Edna Ferber's sweeping generational tale of power, love, cattle barons, and oil tycoons, set in Texas during the first half of the 20th century. 

When larger-than-life cattle rancher Jordan "Bick" Benedict arrives at the family home of sharp-witted but genteel Virginia socialite Leslie Lynnton to purchase a racehorse, the two are instantly drawn to each other. But for Leslie, falling in love with a Texan was a lot simpler than falling in love with Texas. Upon their arrival at Bick's ranch, Leslie is confronted not only with the oppressive heat and vastness of Texas but also by the disturbing inequity between runaway riches and the poverty and racism suffered by the Mexican workers on the ranch. Leslie and Bick's loving union endures against all odds, but a reckoning is coming and a price will have to be paid. 

A sensational and enthralling saga, Ferber masterfully captures the essence of Texas with all its wealth and excess, cruelty and prejudice, pride and violence.

©1952 Edna Ferber (P)2019 HarperCollins Publishers

What listeners say about Giant

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Giant

Was curious about the book since I saw the movie sooo many times.I am glad to say I enjoyed the book very much.

7 people found this helpful

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Still Timely

So glad to have read this finally. The topics and issues covered and questions raised are remarkably current. Its both amazing and depressing how much has not changed and is still being fought even today. An excellent opportunity to learn and understand the many seeds that have led us to today.

6 people found this helpful

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Timeless

thus story captures society at it's best and worst. written in the 1950s it is still meaningful and poignant today.

6 people found this helpful

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Worth a read!

I was skeptical when I started this book but as it progressed I couldn’t stop thinking about it. It’s well written and gets at the heart of Texas both good and bad. Highly recommend

5 people found this helpful

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Texans Beware

Loved the movie so thought I’d try the book-always better obviously! The reader did a pretty good job with the accents and keeping one interested, however this story is based in Texas, and as a Texan I think the reader could have researched word pronunciation better rather than guessing. There should have been a list of words/names pulled from the book to study. Mispronouncing our rivers, cities and even our heroes is a big no no. For a book all about Texas land, Texas style/way, and what we call state of mind, you just would’ve thought that hearing these words and names correctly would be a given. Sadly no. I heard so many in this read. Just a few examples; Mexia, Pecos, Jim Bowie-the list goes on.. Easy mistakes-but unnerving to a Texan all the same. I might be nit picking, but don’t come to Texas if you don’t like this review, we’ll tear you apart.

Would recommend reading though!

2 people found this helpful

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Hold your breath

Edna Ferber has long been a favorite author since I first read Cimmeron 50+ years ago. I love her rich descriptive vocabulary. Her tackling of social issues influenced my response to rights of women and other prejudices.
Giant was no different. One of the few times I saw the movie before reading the book. The movie was arranged in chronological order, which is good for movies, but the impact of the book was heightened by weaving the story from the ending and then telling the story.
What did I like about the book? The dialogue especially Leslie’s is spoken like she is holding her breath and then lets it all out at once. I also like the friendship that develops between Leslie and Jordan (Bic). Too often in modern relationships this sweet metamorphosis is not achieved as modern couples move on after some tough times. I would read it again, I will talk about it with others and I would recommend it to friends.

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I kept waiting for the story to go somewhere

I realize the story was written in a different time and had a slightly different aim than many of the books I choose to read. However, and I'm one that never writes my reviews, this one was just Meandering and never really found a point nor a purpose.

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Forget the movie and you won’t be disappointed

I have watched the movie GIANT several times over the years and finally decided after watching it recently this would be a great time to listen to the novel. Although I do like the detail of the novel that of course can’t be portrayed in the movie I was disappointed in the ending. I actually felt like the ending of the movie was better. The novel is much better when it comes to the details of the characters lives and the additional characters that were actually in it. The reading was OK but I felt like the narrator had not grasped the proper inflections and nuances in the conversations.

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Compelling and Relevant Fiction

This is the first novel of Edna Ferber that I have read or listened to. The begging of the book struck me as a little trite but I'm glad I continued to listen because the book presents an interesting story in which the main characters grow and develop against a backdrop of 20th century economic and social change. The writing is vivid and helps to carry the story. The conflicts between the characters in the book are well presented and still relevant.