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Rosalind Britton

ratings
28
REVIEWS
3
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
0
HELPFUL VOTES
6

  • Smiley's People: A George Smiley Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By John le Carré
    • Narrated By Michael Jayston
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (633)
    Performance
    (586)
    Story
    (585)

    A very junior agent answers Vladimir's call, but it could have been the Chief of the Circus himself. No one at the British Secret Service considers the old spy to be anything except a senile has-been who can't give up the game - until he's shot in the face at point-blank range. Although George Smiley (code-name: Max) is officially retired, he's summoned to identify the body now bearing Moscow Centre's bloody imprimatur. As he works to unearth his friend's fatal secrets, Smiley heads inexorably toward one final reckoning.

    Darwin8u says: "NEAR Perfect Ending for One Best Trilogies Ever"
    "extraordinary reading"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about Smiley's People?

    Michael Jayston has a remarkable way with subtle changes to his voice; I have been familiar with his acting work since I lived in England in the 1960s. I watched him in the original BBC production of Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, where he played Guillam. In this reading of Smiley's People, his vocal work as the excitable Pole Toby Esterhaze is memorable. He gets JUST the right amount of twisted English to reflect the man's origins even though he has lived in England for many years. And his voice for George Smiley is perfect. One can see Alec Guiness's face (the original Smiley of the BBC classic) as Jayston speaks his lines.


    What does Michael Jayston bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    The VOICES which are perfect!!


    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Secret Pilgrim: A George Smiley Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By John le Carré
    • Narrated By Michael Jayston
    Overall
    (235)
    Performance
    (216)
    Story
    (213)

    Nothing is as it was. Old enemies embrace. The dark staging grounds of the Cold War, whose shadows barely obscured the endless games of espionage, are flooded with light; the rules are rewritten, the stakes changed, the future unfathomable. John le Carre seized this momentous turning point in history to give us the most disturbing experience we have yet had of the frail and brutal world of spydom. The man called Ned speaks to us. All his adult life he has been in British Intelligence - the Circus - a loyal, shrewd, wily officer of the Cold War....

    Leonard says: "A Classic That Only Gets Better"
    "Pure Brit"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does The Secret Pilgrim rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    I cannot really rank this since I am a huge fan of Le Carre. Suffice to say it is excellent.


    Have you listened to any of Michael Jayston’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    Jayston is a fine actor, whom I saw often in BBC dramas. He gets the nuances and idiosyncrasies of British upper class speech perfectly, as well as the other characters that Le Carre creates so vividly.


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Confusion

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Elizabeth Jane Howard
    • Narrated By Jill Balcon
    Overall
    (95)
    Performance
    (78)
    Story
    (76)

    This, the third volume of the best-selling The Cazalet Chronicles, takes up the story of the Cazalet family in the spring of 1942 and follows them through the war to VE Day. Polly and Clary have left Home Place for London where Archie Lestrange keeps a close eye on them; Louise, surprisingly, has married; Polly makes a painful discovery; Zoe, despairing of Rupert's return, stumbles on solace; and Edward's duplicity demands a reckoning.

    Jane says: "Just so very good "
    "Takes Me Home"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to Confusion again? Why?

    The reading is extraordinary. Jill Balcom is a fine actress; I watched her on the BBC when I was growing up in London. She manages to differentiate between characters with just slight inflections and changes to her voice. She gets the accents and intonations SO well.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    I don't have a favorite character. They are all so finely drawn and developed from the first of the chronicles and grow up or age wonderfully.


    What does Jill Balcon bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    I mentioned this attribute in the first section: her ability to give each character a personality. One gets to know the people by their voices.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    So much of the series reminds me of my growing up in London during the 50s, and from what my mother told me, of life during the war in England. So many of the things in the book, from food to specifically British things like Harrington squares (terry cloth outer diapers) bring back my childhood. Even the streets where they lived are in my neighborhood! And musicians are mentioned that I knew. Extraordinary.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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