I'm a great fan of T.C. Boyle. I enjoyed the tale and probably would have given it 4 stars, but for the narrator. I find Heald's voice and tone grating, but that actually worked with this somewhat grating subject matter and not very sympathetic characters. However, using that tone of voice when mispronouncing words like "quay" and "dais" just makes him sound pompous and undereducated. Not a good quality in a professional narrator. (Pretty easy to check pronunciation these days with online dictionaries.)
The story was fascinating and the narration actually very good - EXCEPT, that a well-educated, British woman should know how to pronounce "etcetera" and that it's "Johns Hopkins" not "John Hopkins" - sorry, but mistakes like this detract from the credibility and are disengaging.
The narrator reads it in an such a simpy, "ironic" tone, that I can't believe it's supposed to be taken seriously as a crime/mystery novel. Maybe he's using that tone because of all the generic cliches. I'm in the second hour of listening right now. As soon as I finish writing this, I'll be on to trying something else. What a disappointment!
..the narrator hadn't been so boring, and researched how to pronounce certain words which she'd obviously never heard.
...the plot hadn't disintegrated to a luke-warm pot-boiler by hour 3.
...trusted "critics" hadn't led me to believe this was worth at least a light-summer-listen...
...then I might not be so disappointed!
...especially Emily's connection with architecture.
She was not a trend-follower, but a trend-setter who believed that "etiquette" was all about making others feel comfortable.
The narrator was good, but mispronounced some names and words which she should have looked up if she was unfamiliar with them.
That whiney, cutesy voice just isn’t right for telling this interesting tale. Who chooses the narrator, anyway? Doesn’t the author have any say? Especially when it’s a first-person narrative?
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