Interesting insight into the rural high class pre-revolution China, both in their every day lives and their strict cultural structure.
Started confusing but engaging, getting to know the different characters and personalities.
Madame Wu started as a wise, kind head of the household, only to turn into an overly exaggerated fountain of goodness and wisdom. Could not understand the origin of such deep love for Andre, considering the limited time the novel puts them together. Andre is another over the top wise and generous soul. Her constant thoughts of him ended up boring me and couldn't wait for the book to end.
The narration was fine, but I might have enjoyed it more narrated by a woman.
Given all the five stars to this book, I'm a little afraid to give my opinion. I still have 4 hours to go, and I can't wait to finish it. First of all, the slow cadence of the narrator almost puts me to sleep every time, combined with the slow pace of the story. The subject is most interesting and I've read several books about this fascinating people. I had trouble accepting the almost "holiness" of all the characters, the utopian life to be destroyed by the "bearded ones". I don't deny and I abhor the barbaric treatment of American Indians by the white invaders, but this story does not reflect the reality of human beings, warts and all. It reads more like a lyrical bedtime story. I'll find out what the last 4 hours have to offer.
The perfect novel narrated by the perfect voice. Sissy Spacek makes it alive and touches your heart. I'll listen to it again and probably again.
No need to say more.
I've loved the series, reading and listening to it more than once. Gabaldon does an exceptional job researching and creating. This time, though, it felt like repetition of other books. Long, boring, uninteresting dialogs, scenes and characters. Too many story lines which serve only to add pages and confuse the listener. (sometimes I took notes to remember who was who). "Passing through the stones" used to be fascinating, now, it's just like a revolving door. I couldn't wait to finish the book. Unfortunately, I'm sure I'll listen to the next one...
Davina Porter was the star, even more than in previous books. I felt I kept on listening just to enjoy her voice.
I have read all of Rutherfurd's books and so far, my favorites are Sarum and Russka.
(this is the first time I listen to one).
Yes, the characters are difficult to keep track of, and for that reason, I keep notes of who is whose son, etc. It has always been a great help.
The first half of the book I found fascinating, however, by the last 8 or so hours, I had lost interest, mainly because of all the political detail and couldn't wait for it to end. The story at times gets extremely slow and excessively detailed. I love History and I love Ireland and Mr. Rutherfurd is truly a master, but this was a little bit too much for me.
The narrator does a great job.
As a foreign born and English not being my native language, I'm having a hard time following the narration because of the use of vocabulary and accent of the times. I'm half way done and I'm now taking a break. I read mostly Historical Fiction and love the British accent, but this is a bit too much for me. The same happened with Niccolo Rising, which I returned because it was almost painful to listen to. Oh, welll...!!!
If History has ever seem boring and dry to you, this is a truly incredible opportunity to find out what you have been missing. Extremely well researched, easy to follow, fun to listen at times, painful at others, but never dull. Professor Garland makes it so clear and human. He is the teacher that makes you love History. I will listen to it again...and probably again...
I've been reading Anne Perry for years, always enjoying her books. With audiobooks now, Davina Porter makes them more alive and addictive.
A very touching, human account of an event that has no contemporary writers.
Mary is a mother, above all. Her son is taken away from her, she has no power over him.
His actions and companions get him in trouble with the law.
Divine ?...Human ?...it doesn't matter. Her pain, regret and guilt are real.
I'll listen to it again. It's so powerful.
Meryl Streep deserves ten stars and more. She makes Mary talk directly to you as if sharing a cup of coffee.
It didn't change my beliefs, but just the same, it gave me goose bumps.
It doesn't matter how much you have read about Henry VIII, this book makes him a real man, with desires, anger, excesses, love, lust, fear... The author makes us even empathize with him, seeing things from his selfish, sick, royal, human point of view. Some times I found myself agreeing with his twisted reasoning, scary, but the mark of an excellent writer.
Out of all the books I've listened to, this is by far my favorite.
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