A delightful entangled plot that Heyer easily unravels never letting the reader/listener feel the story is being overly contrived.
Unlike previous reviewers I was quite dismayed by Sian Phillips narration. I'm sure Sian Phillips does her best but her voice is quite hoarse. It is a great pity as Sian tries to ensure the various characters have individual voices for the listener but she is hampered by her damaged vocal folds. Serena is described as having a low pitched muscial voice but instead sounds like she should be auditioning for one of the witches in Macbeth!
I suggest that prospective buyers of this book listen very closely to the sample & decide for themselves.
This audiobook was just a delight. I listened in joyful anticipation as the plot developed and I broke out in smiles too many times to count. Sean Phillips narration is one of the best I have ever experienced and the chemistry between the two leads is quite wonderful. I found it completely charming and absorbing.
GEORGETTE HEYER'S STYLE, USE OF LANGUAGE AND SUPERIOR WIT PUT HER IN A CLASS APART. I AM FAMILIAR WITH ALL HER BOOKS AND WAS NOT SURE HOW THIS COULD BE DONE SUCCESSFULLY AS AN AUDIBLE BOOK. MY APPREHENSIONS WERE IMMEDIATELY FORGOTTEN AS SOON AS SIAN PHILLIPS LAUNCHED US SMOOTHLY INTO THE STORY.
ANY OTHER BY THE SAME AUTHOR; THERE IS ALSO A TOUCH OF ANGELA THIRKELL'S BOOKS AND OCCASIONALLY A FLICKER OF DOROTHY SAYERS~~A VAST COMPLIMENT INDEED.
THE NARRATOR'S DEPICTION OF INDIVIDUAL CHARACTERS AND HER ADROIT READING SURPRISED AND DELIGHTED ME~~ SHE NEVER REACHED FOR PURELY VOCAL EFFECTS, YET EACH PERSON STOOD APART.
PROBABLY THE SAME AS THE TITLE
ANOTHER STERLING CHOICE FROM AUDIBLE; AND I AM GLAD TO SEE THAT THERE ARE MANY OTHER HEYER BOOKS IN WAITING. (AND THOSE OF ANGELA THIRKELL, TOO!)
I love Regency Romance. I spend many hours on the road and I am never happier than when I have a Georgette Heyer book to listen to.
The tangled web of mistakes and misjudgment based on silly pride and even sillier prejudices.
When Hector and Fannie discover that they love each other. They are so so surprised! And so guilty. So funny.
Her voice was perfect for this time and place.
A fun Heyer!
Not every book can be a winner and this one just didn't hit the sweet spot for me. Heyer, as always, has an excellent writing style but the heroine was a little too temperamental and hard to like for me to care who she ended up with. It may read better the second time round but it is just too long a read with too little investment in the characters for me to do that soon. The narrator was excellent, as she always is, though her smoky voice sometimes doesn't have the youthful ring to it for some characters. If temperamental heroines are your thing then give this a listen otherwise look to some of Heyer's other books for better characters.
classic film addict
In the book, Serena is described two or three times as having a "musical" voice, but Sian Phillips gave her a voice like Rosalind Russell. Yes, she is an outspoken tomboy, but is also described as graceful and I never got that impression of her from the narrator's reading.
It's very frustrating when the narrator doesn't read the parts as the author describes each character.
Great (feisty) heroine and very well read. The story and characters are well developed and believable. The narrator does a good job distinguishing characters and giving them strong personalities. Highly recommended!
Estate planning lawyer and mom to two boys. My older son liked audiobooks as an infant, and I've listened to a lot since then.
Not one of my favorite Heyers, though I enjoyed it on audio more than ever before. I just couldn’t warm to the heroine and I liked the B story couple better. The hero is a typical Heyer type and I liked him a lot, but he is offstage for much of the story.
One aspect I really liked is the closeness between the heroine and her younger stepmother. It upended the convention of the young gold-digger marrying the older man; here, the stepmother is the sweetest character in the story, and gets her own happy ending.
In listening to this audio, I liked the story much more than I had when I had read the print version in the past. The heroine (Serena) had been raised by her father to enjoy his pursuits and to be unconcerned about conventional behavior. There’s a touch of Orlando, in that she is depicted as the better heir to her father’s estate, but for being female. When her father dies unexpectedly, a cousin inherits and she is forced to remove with her stepmother to the dower house, and in essence to lose the position she had been groomed for and enjoyed. Her stepmother is happy to leave behind the world of grand parties, hunting and the like, but for Serena, it chafes terribly. While I never like Serena all that much, I could certainly sympathize with her situation.
Of course, complications ensue, when a couple of ill-advised engagements threaten to imperil the happiness of the 6 main characters. One things I liked best about the story is that is clear who does and doesn’t suit without making anyone a villain. The two central couples belong with their partners but are all characters worthy of a happy resolution. The only downside to me was in making that happen, Heyer emphasizes the class differences between the nobility and mere gentlemen, as a shorthand of lack of suitability. My guess is that’s more realistic than current novels in which everyone is a Duke, but it was a bit jarring to modern ears.