Shallow and vapid characters and a storyline without any plot or point. I really tried to give Girls in White Dresses a chance - I listened for over 6 hours (the entire thing is 8 hours 3 minutes) before deleting it from my library. Nothing sympathetic about the snotty characters and nothing interesting about the novel. PASS.
I'm so sensitive to the narration in Audio books and I'm always skeptical - both Mr. Hope and Ms. Lefkow narrated this story beautifully. What initially sounded like a hokey story line was so expertly spun into an enjoyable read. By nature of the story there are hops around in time, pay attention to the "Henry is 42; Claire is 18" headers at the beginning of each chapter. There is a certain amount of willing suspension of disbelief, but it's worth it.
Apparently this is the first book in a planned series. The story line itself is slow - I didn't love the narration that added way too much teen-aged valley-girl inflection. There are vibes of 1984 throughout the story - government of the people becomes a government against the people. Order above common sense, etc.
Some reviewers mentioned Harry Potter currents - which I really didn't find to be true - perhaps only because Harry Potter also uses the terms "witch and wizard"? In my opinion, that's about where the similarity ends. Like some other reviewers I nearly stopped listening half-way through because I just wasn't getting into the story, I persisted and it did get better - but never to the level that I expect of a James Patterson novel.
I think the series has some good potential to get better and to develop the characters further (and I hope they do). The end of the this book doesn't offer any closure though. I'll read the next book in the series when it comes out - but I'm not at all "hooked" on the concept or the series yet.
On a whim I downloaded The Secret Garden for a road trip. I read it 20 years ago and loved the story, but like all things over time I had forgotten the context of the story. It was such a joy of re-discovery to go back to the Yorkshire Moors and the secret garden. The narration was superb which added to the magic of the classic story.
I read this book as a youngster but that was at least 20 years ago. I'm on this childhood literature kick (previously to this title I listened to The Secret Garden). Anyhow, I didn't get any sense of magic that I remember from my childhood. The characters were flat and the accents were forced at best. The narrator stumbled over words enough that I found the flaws to be distracting and annoying. There were sounds of pages turning and awkward pauses. All of these things were obvious within the first 15 minutes of the story and if I hadn't purchased the book I wouldn't have forced my way through the entire five and a half hours. I'd suggest passing on this title or perhaps one of the other versions available on audible is better narrated. I rate two stars because despite the bad narration the story is a classic that every child should read (or have read to them).
Report Inappropriate Content
If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.