I LOVE this novel! Probably my favorite of all times. HOWEVER.... sadly, Emilia Fox's reading of it is completely unlistenable. I find this surprising, as I loved her screen performances in the BBC adaptations of Pride and Prejudice (in which she played Georgiana Darcy) and Rebecca (where she reprised her mother's role as Mrs. Dewinter). Her performance in this audio is strained, over-acted, and goes from dreary to dreadful within seconds as she shifts from one character to another. The simple narrative parts are dull, and actually tend to make me zone out entirely, or drift to sleep if I'm in bed. Her reading of the character dialogue leaves me disliking every character in the novel. And as this is my favorite novel, that's quite a spectacular feat.
I got through the first 2.5 hours of listening to this, and finally gave it up as a bad job. I LOVE the version read by Nadia May (have listened to that version over and over), and wanted a new version to listen to, so bought this one, as Emilia Fox's name was one I knew from her acting. I have now bought the Irene Sutcliffe version, and am enjoying that one instead.
I really enjoyed this book. I read the other reviews before purchasing it, and had braced myself for some kind of unsatisfying ending. However, I loved the ending. And the beginning. And the middle. I listened to it all in one day, while doing yard work. I've read and listened to all of Jane Austen's books, and as a 21st century working woman, I completely related to the main character, and laughed out loud several times during the book. Five stars from me. I loved it. I'll certainly be listening to it again, as one of my favorites.
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