I have always liked PD James' mysteries, and love Jane Austen, so I had high hopes for this combination of author and characters. Unfortunately, this book is just silly. The ponderous narration doesn't help a weak story and minor mystery. The original characters are not much amplified except what would be easily predicted. The many extractions of Austen's glowing phrases for those unfortunates who have not read Pride and Prejudice are not enough to rescue this book.
I don't especially like Georgette Heyer's early works compared to her more mature books, and I hesitated to buy this one when it became available. My low expectations were met. I might have liked it better, but I took an instant dislike to the narrator's reading, and it took me several attempts to get beyond the first couple of pages. My favorite character in the book is the twin's father, and unfortunately the narrator turned him into the buffoon. The narrator overall was annoying -- a little too sticky sweet, and actually hard to differentiate among the characters.
In fairness, I rank Heyer's mystery/adventure romance books like this one, Talisman Ring, The Toll Gate and others below her character-driven romances like Cotillion, Friday's Child, and The Unknown Ajax. But if you like a heavy dash of implausible adventure mixed with romance but with less depth of character and humor, this may be the book for you.
Fake British accent, harsh voices, made this novel almost impossible to finish. I cannot give an unbiased review of the story because the narration was so distracting.
Found it hard to listen because of the terrible sound quality. Although I liked Marsden as the Inspector on the tv series, he's a little monotonous as a narrator. Otherwise, typical PD James -- which is pretty good.
Stephen Crossley has been a great narrator of other books, but is totally miscast in this Italian venue. Where is David Colacci when we need him?! Story is typically cynical Donna Leon--but interesting, nonetheless.
I have always enjoyed Donna Leon's books, but this is short on plot, and an unsuccessful attempt at suspense and sex.
Although the author has created a wildly imaginative universe, this book was difficult to follow because characters and situations carried over from previous works.
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