©2000 Dodie Smith; (P)2014 Audible, Inc.
"A good story, flourishing characters, and the most persuasive narrative voice." (Guardian [London])
"This book has one of the most charismatic narrators I've ever met." (J.K. Rowling)
I loved this book ! Have you ever read a novel that was so enjoyable and so vivid that, even while wanting to find out what will happen, you try not to read it too fast because you don't want it to end ? That's how I felt about these characters and the story. It is a book to savor for its unique setting, quirky characters, and observations. Quite wonderful !
Newly retired, I am a reading fiend! I like many types of books, both fiction and non-fiction, with the exception of romance and fantasy
This book was a daily deal and it was Matthew's review that clinched it for me to take a chance. I am so glad I did. It certainly is not a genre I usually would pick as a listen, but maybe I should rethink that.
I really enjoyed this book--it was pure easy going fun for me. I didn't have a moment of boredom and I really liked the story line. Agutter is a very good narrator and captured the voice of the younger teen sister, Cassandra, perfectly. Cassandra is the speaker, the story taken from her journals which are ongoing and a constant in her life.
In summary, Cassandra and her slightly older, very pretty sister, Rose, live on an estate in England. The family should be paying rent to the estate owner but are sinking into serious poverty having been arrears in rent for a long time. Their father, who had fabulous success with his first book, has taken to reading novels, doing puzzles, daydreaming, and hasn't worked or written a thing in years. The estate falls under ownership of two dashing and very pleasant young men, brothers, who were raised in separate households in the US. It seems the girls' romantic dreams may be answered. Or maybe not . . . ?
If this sounds at all interesting, look at some of the other many positive reviews and dive in. Hopefully you will find it as fun as I did!
I loved the reader but was disappointed in the book. It started slow but then picked up and just when I was excited it fizzled out. Not happy with the ending as I am not a fan of open ended books.
Probably not, it got my hopes up and then didn't deliver.
Simon and Cassandra at his house listening to music.
It has been made into a movie.
I get these moments where I can't go by without an audiobook! I am irrevocably in love with books!
This screams Jane Austen and it's no secret; the narrator even tells us herself!
Overall, the book has a peaceful tone to it, but isn't really exciting or unique.
The story is narrated through the pages of an English girl's journal. It explores the different entries that describe how the girl and her family go by their daily routines in the boring monotonic life of poverty. Although, in fairness, the writer's description of poverty is interesting and allows the reader to understand the narrator's point of view.Nothing interesting seems to ever happen to the family until two rich boys come to town. That's where she and her sister (The entire household really) gets overexcited as these two young men become the centre of the family's drama (Pride & Prejudice Much?)
Mildly entertaining if you have exhausted most of your other options.
I read this for book club without knowing anything about it. I was determined not to look ahead or be tempted to know anything in advance & I must admit, the story is beautiful in the classic sense of Romanticism. The tortured artist, desperation of poverty, the worship of art & creation, innocence, and unrequited love. The examination of love- what it means, the many forms it takes, and its elusiveness are drawn out in the various characters storylines from the perspective of a young girl, just beginning to understand the sacrifice and pains of love- in family, friendships, and marriage. It's surprisingly well crafted and beautifully woven without drowning in sentimentality or stooping. The surprises are natural and unpredictable and startlingly realistic. Strongly recommend.
Reading is Sexy...Enough said!
Although it was more of a character study and no big storyline, the quality of the writing kept attention and the progression and development of the characters was slow but kind of beautiful...like a beautiful Sunday afternoon lazy river ride.
Audiobooks are my favorite commuting companions. I listen to them while cleaning or anything that doesn't require full attention.
I can't believe I'd never heard of this book before. Cassandra is such an incredible character. The prose are lovely and the narrator is wonderful. So glad I discovered this story!
I think this book would have been better not as an audio book. Several of my friends loved this book and I liked it fine, but didn't find it as charming as they did.
There were a few little laugh out loud moments. The way the story was told was also enjoyable.
Her American accent wasn't stellar and I got confused which character was talking.
The Story of My Sister and Me
A crumbling castle purchased by a one hit wonder author.. Story by his young daughter who is full of enjoyment of life even though they are out of money and eating from the garden
Love longing choosing love over overly thing else love triangles. Settling and not settling. This story speaks to all of us as who we can love is chosen for us.
"I love it!"
I love this book, and the audio version is a delight - I've just finished listening to it for the second time. It is often described as a coming-of-age story, and Jenny Agutter captures perfectly Cassandra's transition from 'consciously naive' childhood to young womanhood. It's funny, it's poignant, and it's deeply evocative of a largely lost English countryside: all crumbling castles and rusty iron bedsteads with weeds growing out of them, 'motoring' to the seaside for a picnic and a cherry brandy from a country pub. Dodie Smith apparently wrote it in America hankering after England, and I think the book is coloured with a loving nostalgia. I would highly recommend this to young and old readers alike: if you like Cold Comfort Farm by Stella Gibbons or any of the Persephone books like Miss Pettigrew Lives For A Day, I think you would like this.
Beautifully read by jenny agutter. Really bought the era to life. A gentle story well worth a listen
"Interesting and insightful"
This is a very class conscious story that really gives insight into the necessity of keeping up appearances - and not minding whether you are successful at it! Social attitudes are illustrated but it is not a history lesson - it is a charming story of a family brought to poverty because the father has writers' block all described by the developing diary of one of the daughters. Jenny Agutter is the perfect choice as narrator.
Slow moving (a bit dull in parts), but entertaining nonetheless with a few funny moments.
"I am yet to find a better non fiction masterpiece."
Such a delightful, profound and enjoyable book.
Dodie Smith is the perfect wordsmith in this book about an eccentric lifestyle.
Cassandra is wonderful, as she captures life around her in her note-book.
The film is just as enchanting.
I enjoyed this book, but at times there was too much talk about writing & not enough plot. It was quite nice to let it wash over you as it was very well read, but at times I was frustrated with too much description & the characters were too "clever" and discussed literature too much. I like a book to have a little bit more story.
"Classic and brilliant"
This is a wonderful book read by a narrator who I think could not be improved on. It's a gem, and I can't recommend it highly enough.
One of the best books I`ve heard for some time! Jenny Agutter`s rendition draws you in and sets the scene to such an extent you can almost 'feel' the story. Highly recommended
Captivating story and narration. The essence of the period well captured. The characters well drawn and observed. While the first half was excellent , for me the second half got a bit mawkish but overall definitely recommmended
"I Capture the Castle"
An all time favourite beautifully read by Jenny Agutter. She really brings the characters to life. It was a pity the story came to an end, I was left wanting more.
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