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Annie Allerton

DIY critic

ratings
3
REVIEWS
3
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
0
HELPFUL VOTES
2

  • Swimming Home

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By Deborah Levy
    • Narrated By Juliet Aubrey
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (5)
    Performance
    (4)
    Story
    (4)

    As he arrives with his family at the villa in the hills above Nice, Joe sees a body in the swimming pool. But the girl is very much alive. She is Kitty Finch: a self-proclaimed botanist with green-painted fingernails, walking naked out of the water and into their holiday. Why is she there? What does she want from them? And why does Joe’s wife allow her to remain?

    Annie Allerton says: "Absorbing story"
    "Absorbing story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does Swimming Home rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Absorbing story with believable characters, dexterous inter-weaving of plot and the lives of the characters. I found the characters irritating, particularly the central figure of Kitty, the disturbed unwanted guest. The build-up to the suicide (although was there a suggestion of murder by Kitty?) of a central character provided tension and unexpected denouement. The moral might be ‘don’t trust strange young women’, or ‘how helpless we are as human beings’, the latter referring to the failings of almost all the characters, even the apparently strong female war correspondent, although she was the most resourceful. The inclusion of a teenage daughter helped to build the plot elements, but ultimately the reliance on a happy-ever after ending for her was weak, although it did tend to resolve the sense of the negativity of life engendered in the characters and the plot. Did I read it on a bad day?


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Rachel Joyce
    • Narrated By Jim Broadbent
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (222)
    Performance
    (199)
    Story
    (196)

    When Harold Fry nips out one morning to post a letter, leaving his wife hoovering upstairs, he has no idea that he is about to walk from one end of the country to the other. He has no hiking boots or map, let alone a compass, waterproof, or mobile phone. All he knows is that he must keep walking - to save someone else's life.

    Carol says: "What a wonderful story!"
    "Superb perceptive, well-constructed story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry again? Why?

    "For years they had been in a place where language had no significance" This quote epitomizes the breath-taking originality of the imagery in this novel. Astoundingly well-written (first published novel), with characters beautifully explored and delineated in meaningful ways. The journey takes us through ordinary towns and people, but each presented fully as recognisable individuals, but again with originality. The nature and deterioration of Harold’s marriage to Maureen (“she liked her toast thin and cold” is beautifully told from the startling moments of Harold’s brief early happiness, through the destruction from Maureen’s grating bitterness and daily life to the final tragedy that clamped shut any giving between them, forms the background to the detail of his long walk. A death is described with beauty and believable meaning. People’s weakness and pettiness, and attempts at goodness are lovingly developed. Rachel Joyce must have a superb love and understanding of her fellow humanity.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Stoner

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By John Williams
    • Narrated By Robin Field
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (345)
    Performance
    (272)
    Story
    (277)

    William Stoner is born at the end of the 19th century into a dirt-poor Missouri farming family. Sent to the state university to study agronomy, he instead falls in love with English literature and embraces a scholar's life, far different from the hardscrabble existence he has known. And yet as the years pass, Stoner encounters a succession of disappointments.

    Jessica says: "Incredible story with ALMOST perfect narration"
    "Stoicism rather than communicating"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I found it moving and some beautiful writing, but so bleak, so frustrating that he was unable to be more assertive and express his needs, and he was such a withered character in himself – depicted powerfully by the writer. However my sympathy was engaged with him and the other unfulfilled characters – his bitter wife, his destroyed daughter, the envious, revengeful and bitter academic rivals, and his briefly involved parents - like scarecrows in themselves.


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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