Bryce Courtenay and Humphrey Bower are sheer genius together. I can't imagine one without the other. Although the writing is truly extraordinary, Mr. Bower's narration makes The Potato Factory come to life for over 23 much-anticipated hours. Just the Dickensian settings and names of the characters alone are worth the read but there's SO much more. All of the listener's senses are piqued as the characters and story richly unfold. I'd actually find myself tightly closing my eyes to keep out the especially nasty parts only to realize that it's the magic of the narrator that has made them come so alive. PLEASE get this book. Enjoy each and every word. I've listened to dozens of Audible books (and read hundreds more) and this is without a doubt, the best of the best.
This is just my HUMBLE opinion, but this book seriously needed a good editor. By part three, I was getting rather sick of the unbearably long scenes and ticked off that a lazy or incompetent editor was unwilling to move paragraphs/chapters around to make a tighter, more compelling story. At 15 hours, I longed for it to wrap up. Since I had put in the time to listen to parts one and two, I felt I needed to see it to the end. Hence, fast forward worked nicely. I don't think I missed anything critical for several hours of listening that way. And I managed to get to the rather predictable ending. Don't waste your credit even if you love Eileen Goudge.
I have been an Audible customer for quite a few years now - I have purchased and listened to well over a hundred books. Harlen Coben is one of my favorite authors. But his publisher should have known better than to hire Scott Brick to narrate his book. I couldn't listen to more than an hour of this overly, intensely, continuously dramatic reading. It wore me out, ticked me off, and made me forget to listen to the story. I'll never download another Scott Brick narration. I'm sorry I wasted the credit on this one. Two stars because Coben is such a great writer. I'm off to buy the paperback.
Until the last page I was prepared to give this book 4.5 stars. The narrator (excellent) got a few of the words wrong and her version of the name "Eleanor" was a bit different from what I have known. But those are like typos. No big deal. The BIG deal was the ending. I didn't get it at all. If any of you can clarify for me, please email me. HELP! What did I miss? Did I skip a chapter, or fall asleep for 5 minutes while the story was playing? Is there a sequel???
This is the BEST Shopaholic ever. Rosalyn Landor is the perfect narrator for this book, and should be on a very short list for narrating the (hopefully) NEXT in the series. If you love the Shopaholic books, this one is FAB! Get it today!
"Closing Costs" is one of those books that you simply can't shut off. It's one of the best written, most perfectly narrated, cleverly plotted, funny, sad, uplifting, enlightening, PERFECT books I have ever read. If this extraordinary novel isn't snapped up by a movie studio, I'm going to build one and produce it myself ;-))). It's a slam dunk for a blockbuster. READ IT! You won't be disappointed.
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