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Tess of the D'Urbervilles | [Thomas Hardy]

Tess of the D'Urbervilles

When John Durbeyfield discovers a family connection to the ancient Norman family, the D'Urbervilles, the fate of daughter Tess is transformed. Sent by her ambitious parents to visit her wealthy D'Urberville cousins, Tess attracts the attention of the unscrupulous Alec. Seduced and discarded by him and alone in the world, she finds work as a milkmaid, and the love of Angel Clare. Yet his love cannot accept the truth about Tess's past.
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Publisher's Summary

When John Durbeyfield discovers a family connection to the ancient Norman family, the D'Urbervilles, the fate of daughter Tess is transformed.

Sent by her ambitious parents to visit her wealthy D'Urberville cousins, Tess attracts the attention of the unscrupulous Alec. Seduced and discarded by him and alone in the world, she finds work as a milkmaid, and the love of Angel Clare. Yet his love cannot accept the truth about Tess's past.

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What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (130 )
5 star
 (67)
4 star
 (40)
3 star
 (10)
2 star
 (9)
1 star
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Overall
4.2 (94 )
5 star
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3 star
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Story
4.2 (92 )
5 star
 (43)
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 (37)
3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Claire Claremont, CA, USA 04-11-10
    Claire Claremont, CA, USA 04-11-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
    12
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    5
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    "Peter Firth gets this book"

    Peter Firth played Angel Clare in Polanski's film version of this novel. His reading demonstrates great affection for Hardy's characters, and an understanding of the many nuances of the story. Don't worry if it seems slow to begin with, if you let the plot unfold, there is plenty of excitement and tragedy in store. Originally published as a serial, each phase builds up to its own climax, which makes for pleasant and interesting listening. Definitely not a "boring 19th century novel."

    12 of 12 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ron New York, NY, United States 02-13-10
    Ron New York, NY, United States 02-13-10 Member Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
    252
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    646
    46
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    FOLLOWING
    13
    1
    Overall
    "Luscious"

    A heartbreaking story possesses both the clarity of rural life and the confusion of the epic struggles of a human heart. Tess and Angel Clare are so beautifully realized that the frustration one feels with them becomes all-too-real. The narration of this version, by Peter Firth, is among the best in the audible.com catalog that I've encountered so far. Tess is a book to read and re-read with your ears, eyes, mind, and heart.

    10 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Melinda Olympia, WA, United States 03-09-11
    Melinda Olympia, WA, United States 03-09-11 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
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    1
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    "Ripples of either holding or releasing a grudge"

    Well written and artistically read, this book illustrates in story form the ever-enlarging circles of refusing to forgive a wrong. The beautiful contrast is seen in Tess.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kim Holahan 08-07-10
    Kim Holahan 08-07-10 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    29
    ratings
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    104
    17
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    "A wonderful classic!"

    I had read this in high school, and, even though I couldn't remember the plot, always remembered it as a story I liked it. This audible version was delightful and I truly enjoyed my listen.

    5 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    stalucia 09-02-12
    stalucia 09-02-12 Member Since 2008
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    3
    2
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Classic."
    What did you love best about Tess of the D'Urbervilles?

    the story.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Tess, of course.


    What about Peter Firth???s performance did you like?

    I enjoyed his narration. Speech was clear. I would listen to his book vocals again.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    no comment.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ila 06-30-11
    Ila 06-30-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
    33
    ratings
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    43
    35
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    "I didn't get bored"

    I didn't get bored. It was a good listen....good narrator. Too bad the story couldn't have continued with Angel Claire relationship with Tess' younger sister...that might have been a juicy tale.

    2 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kimberly 08-29-13
    Kimberly 08-29-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
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    24
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    "Depressing story"
    Would you try another book from Thomas Hardy and/or Peter Firth?

    Yes, I have read "The Mayor of Casterbridge," also by Thomas Hardy, and I really enjoyed that book. "Tess of the D'Urbervilles," though, I found to be a truly depressing story with very little redemption in the ending to overcome that view of the book.


    Which character – as performed by Peter Firth – was your favorite?

    Peter Firth performed the narration well, giving different qualities to each of the characters. His portrayal of Angel Clare was my favorite, for he had a sense of the thoughts and motives of Angel that were evident in his voice and tone.


    If this book were a movie would you go see it?

    No


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    katie GOSNELLS, Australia 03-12-10
    katie GOSNELLS, Australia 03-12-10 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
    34
    ratings
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    93
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    Overall
    "boaring"

    very boaring narrater hard to listen to didn't like this book at all

    2 of 23 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-8 of 8 results
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  • Emma
    EpsomUnited Kingdom
    5/29/09
    Overall
    "An excellent audio reading of this book"

    Peter Firth read this book beautifully. I can't wait to read more Thomas Hardy novels.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • birdie
    6/20/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Wonderful imagery"
    What made the experience of listening to Tess of the D'Urbervilles the most enjoyable?

    I first read Tess many years ago as a teenager and didn't think much of it. Having revisiting through this audiobook I am astounded at how much I missed! This is one of those reads which benefit from a few years of life experience. Wonderfully read, atmospheric and colourful.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Tess of the D'Urbervilles?

    The description of milking: a real feast for the senses. Brought the era to life and the imagery is superb.


    What does Peter Firth bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

    Well read and very consistent... Believable voices and accents. I am local to this area and found the dialect very believable.


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

    It was very easy to see things through the eyes of the characters and to empathise with them, even given the very different attitudes of the time.


    Any additional comments?

    Thomas Hardy at his best....Highly recommended.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Thames
    London, United Kingdom
    11/25/11
    Overall
    "Highly recommended!"

    After having read and adored Tess of the D'Urbervilles last year, I thought this audiobook did Hardy's novel justice. HIs rich descriptions of Wessex and his compassionate character portraits are just as alive and vivid in an audiobook format as they were for me when I first read this book.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • GK
    Watford, United Kingdom
    7/23/11
    Overall
    "Excellent"

    A wonderful story that is read beautifully in this audiobook. Peter Firth uses a wide range of voices and accents for the different characters which really brings them to life.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Mirium
    SAFFRON WALDEN, Essex, United Kingdom
    3/24/09
    Overall
    "Excellent"

    I've read the book (more than once), I've seen the film, but the story of Tess is always spellbinding, and this audio version is excellent. Peter Firth reads it beautifully; his rustic accents are quite convincing, although he does occasionally lapse into 'Oirish'. Highly recommended.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Beverley
    Newcastle Emlyn, County, United Kingdom
    11/23/08
    Overall
    "great"

    a great story and very well read. will listen over and over again

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • josie
    BRISTOL, United Kingdom
    7/19/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "great story"
    Where does Tess of the D'Urbervilles rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    not the highest, but a wonderful reintroduction to Hardy


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Tess of course. She was so human. Even the tragedy however, I felt i understood, Hardy somehow brought some peace to all the anguish.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-7 of 7 results

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