These are bang-up good stories - MacNeal even has me talking like a WWWII Brit these days!
However, I wish that before I purchased this book and the third in the series, that I had noticed that the narrator was not the excellent Wanda McCaddon from the first book in the series. This narrator ends most phrases and sentences with an upward lilt. It becomes quite annoying, quite quickly, and seriously affects my ability to enjoy the performance.
I would absolutely recommend this book. I don't write many reviews but I enjoyed this series so much, I felt that it was important to tell others about it.
I don't know that there is another female heroine that is as intelligent, determined and "real."
This book is intriguing. It makes you want to turn the page to hear what will happen next. Many times you read a spy novel and the spy is just there, you don't put much thought into how they became a spy, what training was necessary, what thought processes the person goes through - I have no idea if the information is 100% accurate in the novel but it really, doesn't matter, it gets you thinking about a spy novel from a completely different - completely enjoyable angle.
If you are a fan of the spy/mystery/1920's era novels, this series is a must. I appreciate the intelligence of the characters and did not feel that that the novel slowed as some do when over describing technical details. I bought the first audible book in the series because it was recommended to me based off other purchases. After the first read, I quickly purchased the other 2 and I am certainly glad that I did.
I'm not sure I can finish listening to this book.
The narrator sounds like a hysterical 9 year old, not like a woman who would be working as a spy. You can never tell when she finishes a sentence. There is little intonation, unless she is squealing.
I enjoyed the first book in this series very much. I am extremely disappointed in the seconds narration.
I would, but the narrator drove me crazy. Every sentence she said was as if it was a tagline for a movie.
She said every sentence with a downturn at the end, turning it into a movie tagline. Just imagine: "In 2014, there was an event. An event that changed... the world." Except for the entire book.
The narrator is the worst I've heard. Breathy, whispering narrative, though her dialogue is fine and her character differentiation is good.
I loved Winston Churchill and David Green equally.
The narrator from MR. Churchill's Secretary was wonderful and her characterization of Maggie was excellent, not the little girl, baby-voice of this narrator.
I would have loved to listen through if there had been a different, less annoying narration. I listen to audio books while walking my dogs for an hour or more, then, if the audio is great, I keep on after I get home.
Overall I love these books, maybe should have gone whispersync.
Utter disappointment. The reader's irritating "up speak" distracted so much from the author's words that I found myself cringing as the end of each sentence approached. This, together with the delivery of every line with the same plodding lack of emotion, ruined the book for me. I enjoyed Mr. Churchill's Secretary and couldn't wait to listen to the next in the series. Regrettably, I didn't pay attention to the fact that there was a different reader or read the reviews before purchasing.
This should be a pleasant light read, but the narration is so distracting that I almost had to stop listening.
Pretty similar to the Rhys Bowen series.
There are problems with the narration. The weird breathiness was the first thing that I noticed. It sounded like she was narrating a dream sequence. It wasn't long before I noticed the very strange cadence that marked every sentence of the third person narration. It was kind of like she was a BBC newsreader. Very strange and distracting to the point that I almost stopped listening. But I paid for the download and I felt compelled to finish. The other very annoying thing was her interpretation of Maggie's voice. There is a tendency for some British actors to make their Americans sound like idiots, but this one was over the top. It sounded much like the voice of the "Barbie" doll in the Toy Story animated movies. Maggie is a mathematics genius, not a bimbo. It made me laugh when she would say something technical, because it was so ridiculous to hear that voice citing math theory. I thought maybe I was being hard on Ms. Duerden, thinking she was directed to have her voice have the weird monotone, breathy cadence,so I went and listened to a sample of some of her other books. Unfortunately, they were the same. So, if I want to read the rest of the series, I will probably get the books from the library.
Avoid Susan Duerden narrations.
I like historical mysteries, but I found this predictable and not very engaging. The narration was so irritating I almost quit part way through and returned it. So listen carefully before you invest.
Honestly, I could not tell you anything about this book because the narrator was sooo horrible. I loved the first Maggie Hope book, and was really looking forward to this one but could not make it through the first hour of the book. The narrator had a habit of ending sentences on a higher note almost like she was asking a question or announcing an award. This is really ineffective when you are try to talk about a serious or sombre subject. She was terrible with the different voices, and listening to her was .....painful. I am normally not so negative, and have suffered through so-so and below par narration because the story was good. This however, was intolerable.
I'm going to listen to Firebird but can't wait for My Heart's Own Blood and the Century Trilogy Book #3.
Couldn't tell - the narration was too bad to get that far.
I loved the first book and the narrator was fantastic. I should have taken a closer look at the reviews and just bought the second book instead of buying the audiobook. I am having a difficult time not being overwhelmingly distracted by Susan Duerden's manner of speaking. While I was listening to this audiobook, my 12 year old daughter walked in the house with no prior knowledge of this book or my opinion of the narrator and said "What's wrong with her voice? Why is she talking like that?" Wanda McCaddon, the narrator of the first book, does a terrific job of bringing Maggie Hope into my living room. The version of Maggie Hope I discovered in Book 2 seemed flighty, breathless, insecure, and overly "girlish." I don't believe that Maggie actually changed between Books 1 and 2, but it did illustrate to me how very different a character might seem depending on the narrator.