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Cocktail Hour Under the Tree of Forgetfulness Audiobook
Cocktail Hour Under the Tree of Forgetfulness
Written by: 
Alexandra Fuller
Narrated by: 
Bianca Amato
Cocktail Hour Under the Tree of Forgetfulness Audiobook

Cocktail Hour Under the Tree of Forgetfulness

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Publisher's Summary

Alexandra Fuller won worldwide attention, popular acclaim, and critical accolades for her memoir of her childhood in Africa, Don’t Let’s Go to the Dogs Tonight. This engaging follow-up explores Fuller’s parents’ childhoods and charts the trajectories of their lives through all the British couple’s experiences in war-torn Africa.

Fuller braids a multilayered narrative around the perfectly lit, Happy Valley-era Africa of her mother's childhood; the boiled cabbage grimness of her father's English childhood; and the darker, civil war- torn Africa of her own childhood. At its heart, this is the story of Fuller's mother, Nicola. Born on the Scottish Isle of Skye and raised in Kenya, Nicola holds dear the kinds of values most likely to get you hurt or killed in Africa: loyalty to blood, passion for land, and a holy belief in the restorative power of all animals. Fuller interviewed her mother at length and has captured her inimitable voice with remarkable precision. Cocktail Hour Under the Tree of Forgetfulness is as funny, terrifying, exotic, and unselfconscious as Nicola herself.

©2011 Alexandra Fuller (P)2011 Recorded Books, LLC

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (445 )
5 star
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Overall
4.2 (392 )
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Story
4.4 (388 )
5 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Patricia Clarkesville, GA, United States 01-05-12
    Patricia Clarkesville, GA, United States 01-05-12 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
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    3
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    "A fascinating life well written."
    What made the experience of listening to Cocktail Hour Under the Tree of Forgetfulness the most enjoyable?

    Nothing ordinary in this woman's life, funny and poignant.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Nicola Fuller of Central Africa was both ridiculous with her snobbery and admirable for her strong core.


    What does Bianca Amato bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    I like Amato's plain reading. Too many readers feel compelled to over dramatize, rather than give a plain, strong delivery. Her accent added location, but didn't interfere with understanding the story.


    Any additional comments?

    This book is well and tightly written.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    amy bahrain, Bahrain 03-19-16
    amy bahrain, Bahrain 03-19-16 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    13
    13
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    0
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    Story
    "Is it just me or..."

    Is this just too annoying to listen to?!

    I admit I should probably listen to more than just a few chapters before reviewing this, but goodness it was a challenge to continue, and allowing myself to give up is a 2016 resolution....

    Some stories and characters feel very familiar, but not in a novel or endearing way. That was kind of the case for me with this book. Anyone seeking a supposedly 'achingly' colonial slice of life with 'eccentric' English folk behaving in 'outrageous' ways might enjoy this. As an English person I just wasn't convinced by the people or the dialogue - the word contrived springs to mind.

    In the end I couldn't quite imagine myself caring enough about the characters to persevere. I might be entirely wrong and the whole thing sparks into 'arresting brilliance' shortly after where I left off... I'm going to give the story a 3 as I will assume perhaps my experience of it is at least partially blighted by the unconvincingly plummy, ponderous and obvious narration.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    lisa 01-15-16
    lisa 01-15-16 Member Since 2015
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    27
    3
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Africa as palette"

    The beauty and despair of Central Africa captured through the life stories of a white settler.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Elisabeth Durham, NC, United States 01-08-16
    Elisabeth Durham, NC, United States 01-08-16 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
    346
    ratings
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    530
    96
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    24
    3
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    Story
    "I was disappointed"

    I adored Don't Let's Go To The Dogs Tonight and suppose I expected the same. While Cocktail Hour is perfectly fine, it just did not grip me the way Dogs did. I also found the bits when the mother sang (which was many times) annoying rather than additive.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mary Lou Skowronski Newport Beach, CA, United States 10-12-15
    Mary Lou Skowronski Newport Beach, CA, United States 10-12-15 Member Since 2012

    Realtor, Newport Beach Homes, Foreclosure and Short Sale Specialist

    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    24
    5
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    1
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    "Delightfully Entertaining Perseverance in Africa"

    If you want to get out of your world and into another's - sit back and enjoy. Struggles, conflicts and loss keep this family coming back for the love and beauty that is only unique to Africa.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Andi 04-28-15
    Andi 04-28-15 Member Since 2012

    Reading is the cheapest ticket to a journey in another place and time. Where you can observe peoples deepest thoughts and aspirations.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
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    78
    14
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    "Not much difference from last book"

    Fuller picks up from her prior book and elaborates on her mother gritty mother who is displeased with how the family is portrayed in the book. Nicolette faced many hardships, and was defiantly a colorful person. I just felt like there was a lot recycled material from the prior book, and I was kind of tired of it all. On to West With Night ;)

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gardengirl 03-02-15
    Gardengirl 03-02-15 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
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    17
    5
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    0
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    "Singing"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Cocktail Hour Under the Tree of Forgetfulness to be better than the print version?

    An interesting, well-read book EXCEPT for the singing. Why, oh why, did the publishers require -- if require they did -- the reader to sing the songs in the text? It's utterly painful.


    What other book might you compare Cocktail Hour Under the Tree of Forgetfulness to and why?

    When The Crocodile Swallowed The Sun.


    What three words best describe Bianca Amato’s voice?

    Fine except for the singing.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    No


    Any additional comments?

    No

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Judy Bowna via Albury, Australia 10-05-13
    Judy Bowna via Albury, Australia 10-05-13 Member Since 2011

    Photographer's Moll, Chicken breeder, school administrator and owned by four dogs. Busy life, Happy life!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    24
    ratings
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    13
    13
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    1
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    "Just Lovely"

    A well written, well narrated story that describes a family history that is at once difficult and heartwarming. Beautiful descriptions of life in a different era of Africa.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Connie 07-18-13
    Connie 07-18-13 Member Since 2012

    Connie

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "never grabbed me"

    A good friend recommended this book to me so I wanted to like it. I do generally like the ex-pats in Africa topic. This book however never developed a character I cared much about, and I was glad it wasn't that long.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Blue Wren 05-17-13
    Blue Wren 05-17-13
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    15
    6
    Overall
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    Story
    "Just can't take any more!"

    Tried again to listen to this book but it's so trite and seems to have no plot. Managed to listen to 45 minutes on the train but it was too painful, especially the singing. Best avoided.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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