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The Moonstone [Naxos AudioBooks Edition] Audiobook

The Moonstone [Naxos AudioBooks Edition]

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Publisher's Summary

Upon inheriting the Moonstone, a huge and priceless diamond, Rachel Verinder's delight turns to dismay when the gem suddenly disappears. But this is no ordinary theft. Sergeant Cuff of Scotland Yard is called in and immediately suspects an intricate plot. However, not even his powers of detection can penetrate fully the mysteries surrounding the diamond. And as we listen to each character’s version of the events, layer upon layer of drama and suspense build to the final and astonishing denouement of this magnificent, classic English detective novel.

Download the accompanying reference guide.

Public Domain (P)2014 Naxos AudioBooks

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (87 )
5 star
 (47)
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Overall
4.2 (81 )
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Story
4.5 (79 )
5 star
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4 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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  •  
    Gary Kelly 08-14-15
    Gary Kelly 08-14-15 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
    7
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    "Be persistent"
    Would you listen to The Moonstone again? Why?

    I read this when I was a teenager. This production is excellent. You just need to get thru the first 45 minutes, which seems a little tedious at first, but sets the scene and tone for the rest of book, which becomes increasingly engaging.

    Well with the investment. Thanks to those who produced it (including Wilkie Collins :)


    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    John 11-10-16
    John 11-10-16 Member Since 2016

    St. Louis, Missouri

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "The very finest detective story ever written"

    That's not my opinion. That's Dorothy Sayers' verdict, the woman who gave us Lord Peter Wimsey. But more on that later.

    I suppose you could read this novel as a critique of British Imperialism: the fabled Indian gem, the “Jewel in the Crown” if you will, becomes the source of scandal, revenge, ruined reputations and general unhappiness. Obviously, everyone is better off without it.

    Or you could take the social justice angle. For all his faithful service, Gabriel Betteredge admits that those above stairs have the freedom to express emotions which those below stairs dare not reveal. The fisherman’s daughter, Limping Lucy, goes proto-feminist/socialist when she conceives that a young gentleman of quality has made poor Rosanna Spearman the plaything of an idle hour.

    Nah. Why ruin a good thing by going all PC/intellectual/lit-crit? Better to stick with T. S. Eliot. The Moonstone is, "the first, the longest, and the best of modern English detective novels...in a genre invented by Collins and not by Poe". Or Dorothy Sayers: "probably the very finest detective story ever written". Or me: this is one of the most delightful, engaging and engrossing books you’ll ever hear.

    As indicated by Old Possum, Poe has his partisans. But whoever wrote the Wikipedia article on Moonstone has it right. Collins introduced all the elements that would become standard fare in mystery tales until, I’m guessing, the advent of the hard-boiled school:

    A country house setting
    The inside job
    Red herrings
    Bungling local cops
    A celebrated, skilled investigator
    A large cast of false suspects
    A least likely suspect
    A reconstruction of the crime
    The final, bravura plot twist

    Because this first and best of all detective stories was written in the 1860’s, Moonstone is a fabulous composite. First, you get a full-blooded Victorian novel, with all the attractions the best of that breed of literature has to offer: elaborately crafted writing, intersecting story lines, living characters, engaging observations, wit, pathos, charm. Then, on top of all that, we have the country house, the bungling local constable, the false suspects, the red herrings and a perplexing mystery, one that I bet you’re not going to be able to crack before the final revelation.

    As usual, the Naxos recording is superb. The full cast includes some of my favorite readers. And, given the way Collin’s constructed his novels—at least the two I’m now familiar with—a full cast is essential. The story is carried along by sequential narrators each keeping strictly to what they knew at the time of which they write. Each of their narratives deserves a voice actor dedicated to that part, giving it his or her all. As these different testimonies correlate or conflict, echoing and reverberating against each other, we get multiple points of view on almost every major character. The result is three-dimensional portraits that live and breathe.

    While I don’t know a lot about Wilkie Collins I do know that he took laudanum (opium) to treat gout. Predictably, the treatment became an addiction and, after the death of his mentor Dickens in 1870, helped grease the skids of a general decline in Collins’ health and the quality of his literary output. In that light, the part laudanum plays in The Moonstone—and the descriptions of the effect of the drug on a man’s senses—make for some particularly solemn listening.

    Final note: a story this long and complex is a special challenge as an audiobook. You can’t flip back through the last 300-some-odd pages to refresh your memory on details. But never fear. When previous testimony is alluded to, a note indicates the chapter in which that testimony appears. Don’t know if this was Collins’ doing or if the editors of this audiobook decided to leave us these helpful guideposts, but they are invaluable. Certainly not every point is covered, but the critical ones are.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Chris 12-10-16
    Chris 12-10-16 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great book, awful narration "

    GREAT book, but the second narrator (the old man narrating the part of the servant man) made me stop listening to this audio book, go to the Audible store, and buy the same book narrated by a different narrator. I'm sure he's a man of respect, and respectfully I say that his narration sounds like that of a drunken man. His pace and tone make it imposible to understand what he's saying 70% of the time during his narration, and his super slow pace creates a nuisance that doesn't excite the will in the reader to keep listening.
    I wish I could have it refunded...

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dr. Alan J. Smith 02-22-17 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
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    "Better read than listened to."
    What would have made The Moonstone [Naxos AudioBooks Edition] better?

    A prep course In 19th century English history, politics and culture as well as an assistant to keep track of the excessive and unnecessary detail of a literary narrator in love with the sound of his voice.


    What do you think your next listen will be?

    Maltese Falcon.... sure bet.


    What about the narrators’s performance did you like?

    The actor narrating this novel had a clear, well-paced, and articulate voice. Pleasant and understandable.


    What character would you cut from The Moonstone [Naxos AudioBooks Edition]?

    The main narrator, the character in the book, not the audio narrator.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    RapaciousReader Carlsbad, CA 01-10-17
    RapaciousReader Carlsbad, CA 01-10-17 Member Since 2012

    Say something about yourself!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Wilkie you sly fox!"

    Considered the first detective novel it delivers tenfold. Terrific cast. Exciting, frustrating, whodunit! Another winner.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    runnerpaul Shelby Twp. MI 05-25-16
    runnerpaul Shelby Twp. MI 05-25-16 Member Since 2017

    Irun2curenf

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Slow start but worth it"
    Would you listen to The Moonstone again? Why?

    Yes, as I am sure I have missed some of the character build ups.


    What did you like best about this story?

    How it ended.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    When the main character was confronted about the stealing of the jewel by his hopefully future wife.


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

    Never trust what you see.


    Any additional comments?

    Loved this book by the end.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Eveline Howells 04-04-17 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "The Moonstone by Willkie Collins."

    A facinating tale set in the time of the English reign in India. A story full of mystery and in language of the time of Charles Dickens.
    It is a long story with so many people involved it takes you into the far east and into the countryside of England and back to Dickensian London. Wikie Collins was a fine writer. This book is well worth reading. I found it intriuging , a change of pace from todays world of detective novels, which I also enjoy to the fullest.
    The readers were excellent. They really heloed draw you into the tale as it goes along.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Alida D. 03-16-17
    Alida D. 03-16-17 Member Since 2015
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    "Full Moonstone Shines!"

    The narration was well performed and suited perfectly to the form of the story. If you like a lengthy listen to a mystery set in the Victorian Era, this is your cup of tea. The plot is simple, with just enough twists to keep it interesting. however, like the era, the story drags under it˜s own weight in places,

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    roryski 03-03-17
    roryski 03-03-17 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Wonderful escape!!"

    Oh so relaxing to get lost in this other world with perfect narration. Did not want the story to end!!!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    AnielaS 02-12-17
    AnielaS 02-12-17 Member Since 2015

    I have read the massive amount of books. Listening to the books, even the same I read before is a new and captivating experience.

    ratings
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    22
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    "Good"
    Any additional comments?

    Good story, but not too captivating. I am glad I listened to it but I am ready for something more dynamic.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
Sort by:
  • Harriet Lindsay
    10/22/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Excellent and thrilling novel. Gripping from first to last."

    Extremely well narrated throughout with one very very minor error (in my opinion). Betteridge's accent was not noticeably a regional accent which makes sense given his circumstances. However, when it comes to his daughter Penelope her accent, as quoted by 2 of the narrators, is markedly Yorkshire which does not make sense! As I say a very minor objection as her words are only spoken a couple of times. Apologies for being pedantic!

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Steve Brown
    8/11/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Funny, intriguing, poignant"

    The story is absorbing, but the real joys here are wonderfully drawn characters of the different narrators - especially the obnoxious and un-self aware hypocrite Miss Clack, and the lovable and loyal Betteridge.

    Excellently read.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • annie
    orston, United Kingdom
    10/12/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "unexpected delight"
    What did you like most about The Moonstone?

    the performance - each character reading their own 'chapters' added colour and character to the story


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Each had their own qualities - though the epilogue 'policeman' was a special delight


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

    As stated - helped engage me in the story


    Any additional comments?

    Slowish start but I am now a Wilkie Collins convert!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Nana L
    1/9/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Wonderful"

    Equally as enjoyable as Woman in White. Great story, language delightful, narration perfect. Wonderful to listen to when wanting to relax.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • EFL
    12/30/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "The moonstone"

    Excellent, un-putdownable tale with fantastic performances from all readers, apart from the introduction.
    Collins is brilliant. Would highly recommend.

    3 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Roly
    3/4/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A Stately Novel"

    This is a great story - a good mystery, that maintains suspense and with typically in depth Victorian characterisations and a surprising humour . I enjoyed the changing narrations and the detail that this style of novel provides. It's unlikely I would have had the time to read this - other than while travelling and on the move - a big plus for the utility of Audible !

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Mrs M.
    7/6/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Slow to start but gets gripping"

    I found the first few dozen chapters slow-moving; I may well have skim-read a written text, but the story did draw me in nevertheless so it is worth persevering and the ending is perfect.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • David Bailey
    4/13/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Awful narration!"
    What would have made The Moonstone better?

    Better narrator for second part of story.


    Any additional comments?

    There sadly comes a time in every actors life when age adversely affects their performance. The voice becomes thin, weedy and gurgled. Diction goes from precise to floppy and in this case a terrible sense of over wetness of the mouth. I don't know if the story or other narrators were any good as I had to stop listening.

    1 of 7 people found this review helpful

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