Bay Area, CA United States | Member Since 2012
History, family, society
Porchie's affairs, the scandal with Almina' second husband/his ex-wife.
Catherine's second marriage.
While I did enjoy this book, I found it just a tiny bit less compelling than Lady Almina and the Real Downton Abbey.
I did truly enjoy this book, though I did occasionally find the narration a bit annoying (unexpected pauses, shifting/inconsistent accents, male voices not as realistic and an uplift at the ends of declaratory sentences) and there were a couple of plot points that seemed out of character for Honor.
That being said, as a quilter and armchair historian of American slavery I found the subject matter, characters and overall storytelling engrossing and I am sure I will listen to it again. It is a quick listen and a very welcome escape on my commute. I especially enjoyed the quilting bits, which seemed very natural/appropriate to the plot and were accurately rendered (a huge pet peeve of mine is supposedly crafty fiction that is hardly crafty at all or just pasted on). If you like quilts or quilting, I think you will appreciate this book.
Though Honor is the main character, she is supported by two great characters in particular: Belle and Mrs. Reed, both of whom give dimension to the story and a bit of a reality check to Honor when required.
Number 1! I loved this book and the narrators. I very nearly started over again as soon as it ended.
Possession by A.S. Byatt or Corelli's Mandolin by Louis de Bernieres in terms of the forbidden love aspect. Corelli's Mandolin in particular for the wartime setting, themes of separation, time passing and how the characters grapple with these issues. I would also say it reminded me a little bit of Edward Rutherfurd's books: even without the multi-generational aspect, The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet is just as ambitious and sweeping (and successfully so).
I really enjoyed having a male and female reader to handle the various voices. It added to the realism of the story and helped keep the characters/dialogue straight. They both did a great job voicing the characters and capturing just the right feelings in a given situation.
Yes, I found it thoroughly engrossing and felt very involved in the story and characters. I definitely had strong loves and hates among the characters. And I did cry (on the train, during my commute)!
The events described seemed so immediate and real. The action and emotion were evident in the writing. I felt like the author was telling me the story in my living room.
Anything by Frederick Forsyth because if the similar themes of espionage, statecraft, geopolitical issues and the like.
Hearing the story read made it so much more immediate and real.
history family service
There are many, but one that struck me was how generous Lady Almina was to her secretary when she married, setting them up in a house, and lending them the Lake House at Highclere for their honeymoon.
Again -- they were all so perfectly portrayed, but one of my favorites was Aubrey, the Earl's younger brother.
The sweep of history through the lens of one of Britain's great families. Or something like that. :)
I absolutely loved this book and wanted to listen in one sitting! Obviously, the war years are just shatteringly sad, but Lady Almina and her family's, friends' and colleagues' sacrifices are ultimately so hopeful. I also loved Wanda McCaddon's narration and have already added two more of hers to my library, one of which was written by the Countess of Carnarvon.
Samantha Bond read the book beautifully. Her voicing of the characters was spot on. I loved the story and honestly wasn't totally expecting to after reading reviews elsewhere (disappointment at certain elements of the plot). However, I found the story to be very honest and emotionally authentic. Bridget is as funny and scattered as ever. As ever, she manages to pull everything off with aplomb. At the same time, she had endured one of the worst things a person can endure in life, and her reflections on that are equally honest and all the more powerful. She seemed to feel what I think I would feel in the same circumstances, which left me tearful at certain plot points. I would definitely listen to it again.
Bridget of course! She is always very candid about the way daily life can drive you mad, and in this third book of the series, equally candid about the things in her life that make it worth muddling through the worst bits.
I haven't; not applicable.
Not sure; I don't think the title was totally applicable though.
Exciting, adventurous escape.
Alfred Molina brought this story to life as only he could. Each character was so distinctly and perfectly rendered, I felt like I was actually there witnessing the events as they unfolded.
I wouldn't. Alfred Molina's rendering was so perfect, I wouldn't even consider watching a movie of this book. It wouldn't be as good. :)
I bought this book on the recommendation of a friend. I normally do not go in for adventure/pirate/seafaring tales. But on the strength of her recommendation and Alfred Molina as the narrator, I did, and I loved every second of it. I do think the story is slightly predictable and otherwise would not interest me that much. But Alfred Molina's telling of it made it breathlessly compelling. Bravo!
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