I would recommend this to someone who enjoys classic "cozy" mysteries, ala Agatha Christie.
The suspense of the last few chapters.
Miss Silver ~ but overall, Diana Bishop is an excellent reader of all characters, with enough differentiation to make the characters recognizable and enjoyable.
All the Miss Silver mysteries have a similar "heroine in jeopardy" plot, and some can be quite dated in terms of the social roles of the 1930s to 1950s. However, the heroine of "Lonesome Road" was strong and interesting, as was the heroine's love interest. Miss Silver is the hero!
Josephine Tey's mystery/detective stories are extremely well written, with interesting plots. This new series, which uses Tey as a fictional character, are also well written and plotted, and quite enjoyable as the reader imagines the real Tey involved in these fictional situations.
The books are narrated by the always excellent Davina Porter. I have listened to only the first book in the series so far, and am looking forward to the next two (I believe another has been written but not yet recorded). I am also eager for more of Tey's books to be presented on audio, as right now there are only two available ("Brat Farrar" and "The Daughter of Time.")
This novel started out a little slowly, and I was not sure how it would all come together. It is a charming story of the people running a marriage bureau and their clients, somewhat along the lines of Alexander McCall Smith's "No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency" series. After the first hour or so I was completely enthralled, and I was disappointed that the story had to end. The reader switched between an English accent for the narration, and Indian-accented English for the characters. I can't judge the accuracy of the Indian accent, but to an American listener, it sounded like what we are used to hearing. The characters were well delineated and it was easy to picture each one of them as they spoke. I thoroughly enjoyed this book.
I enjoyed this story mainly for the details about vintage clothing. I did not find the heroine particularly admirable, although some of the other characters were interesting.
The narrator had some difficulty with male voices. Her American accents were terrible. She seemed to think that speakers from California produce wandering /r/ sounds at the ends of words - "Californier"; "idear"; "sor" for "saw" - or add them in the middle, as in "farther" for "father" and "tort" for "taught" - or eliminate final /r/ as in "sista" and "brotha." The reader seemed to be trying so hard, speaking very slowly for accents (as she did with male voices), but there was no accuracy or consistency, so those parts of the narration were quite annoying.
This is vintage Agatha Christie, well written and plotted, interesting characters - but the choice of narrator was very strange. The book was read by Joan Hickson, who played Miss Marple on one of the BBC series - a poor choice, as the novel is narrated by a man, with Miss Marple coming in for a short time near the end of the story. In addition, Ms. Hickson's articulation was very slushy and hard to understand; I don't think it was just the age of the recording. She also has some strange (to an American listener) habits, such as producing a one-syllable word at the end of the sentence with four syllables (ta - a- a- alk). This may have been typical of a certain class and/or region of speakers in England but it was very distracting and reduced intelligibility even more.
I bought this book in a hurry; for once, I did not listen to a sample of the narration. Although the story was enjoyable, I would not knowingly have purchased the book with this narrator.
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