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The Scarlet Pimpernel | [Emmuska Orczy]

The Scarlet Pimpernel

Set during the Reign of Terror following the start of the French Revolution... The title character represents the original "hero with a secret identity" that inspired subsequent literary creations such as Don Diego de la Vega (El Zorro) and Bruce Wayne (the Batman). The popularity of the novel encouraged Orczy to write a number of sequels for her "reckless daredevil" over the next 35 years. The original play was performed to great acclaim in France, Italy, Germany, and Spain, while the novel was translated into 16 languages.
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Publisher's Summary

Set during the Reign of Terror following the start of the French Revolution... The title character represents the original "hero with a secret identity" that inspired subsequent literary creations such as Don Diego de la Vega (El Zorro) and Bruce Wayne (the Batman). The popularity of the novel encouraged Orczy to write a number of sequels for her "reckless daredevil" over the next 35 years. The original play was performed to great acclaim in France, Italy, Germany, and Spain, while the novel was translated into 16 languages. Subsequently, the story has been adapted for television, film, a musical, and other media.

Public Domain (P)2012 Trout Lake Media

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.0 (26 )
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4.3 (24 )
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Story
4.0 (23 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Michael Walnut Creek, CA, United States 03-24-13
    Michael Walnut Creek, CA, United States 03-24-13 Member Since 2002

    I focus on fiction, sci-fi, fantasy, science, history, politics and read a lot. I try to review everything I read.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    Story
    "Mildly Exciting but Dated"

    This is a classic primarily because it is a very early example of the popular superhero form. While listening it occurred to me The Scarlet Pimpernel might be the very first superhero in literature. It looks like the pimpernel was number two in 1903 (Spring Heeled Jack was reportedly the first in 1867). This novel was mildly exciting but is basically like a single episode of any superhero adventure. It was also a bit odd that the story was pro-monarchy. There were a few places where ill treatment of the aristocrats was condemned (while, of course, the aristocrats’ oppression of the peasants was not even mentioned). The narration is quite good. I am happy to have listened to this, but can’t say I would recommend it to most modern listeners.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Maureen Elizabeth City, NC, United States 07-10-13
    Maureen Elizabeth City, NC, United States 07-10-13 Member Since 2008
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    "Well Worth the Money"

    Classics are that because they are timeless and hundreds of authors readapt this themes to reflect the times in which they write. Is it dated, of course, but it is also groundbreaking in it's use of a heroine rather than simply a hero to tell the story. Like so many classics that "we" never get around to actually read, Audible makes it painless to experience these books. Interestingly, I found the narration to be distracting. The reader was excellent but I found her rapid presentation somewhat distracting.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    tony TUCSON, AZ, United States 04-27-13
    tony TUCSON, AZ, United States 04-27-13
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    "fantastic!"

    fantastic great adventure. i know why this is such a famous book! very highly reccommended!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jane Shiner, TX, United States 02-04-13
    Jane Shiner, TX, United States 02-04-13 Member Since 2011
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    "Finally heard this classic"
    What did you like best about The Scarlet Pimpernel? What did you like least?

    I suppose the narrator was the best. Women narrators are generally irritating to me, but her voice was not. Least liked, I suppose, was simply that it was written in the rather overwrought drama of the times. How could I have expected otherwise? There are exceptions....


    What did you like best about this story?

    I thought I had figured it out, but then I got caught up in another part and forgot who I thought would advance the story....


    Which scene was your favorite?

    I suppose when the men were sleeping at the ball.


    Could you see The Scarlet Pimpernel being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

    A bit out of date, I think.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-4 of 4 results
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  • cath haye
    Birmingham UK
    7/7/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "atmospheric"
    What made the experience of listening to The Scarlet Pimpernel the most enjoyable?

    It rolled along very well and drew you in.


    What did you like best about this story?

    It was very engaging and atmospheric.


    Any additional comments?

    Diction was very clear and easy to listen to but pronunciation of French words was not always accurate. I'm not a French speaker but I'm sure 'cure with an accent' (for curate) is not pronounced 'cure'.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • K. A. Newton
    North West England
    6/5/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "An old favourite."

    I am not reviewing the story - it has been read by so many people for so many years.

    I enjoyed listening to the book very much but the narrator speaks very quickly with a French accent. After a while she slowed down just a little.

    I found that words ran together so much as they were being read that a person to whom English was a second language would find it difficult to comprehend as the sentences were spoken.

    The lady narrator had a nice speaking voice and did put emotion and feeling into her speech but this was spoilt by the speed she used.

    I like to do other things while my ears listen to narrators but with this book I had to concentrate hard and this book therefore was a "sitting down and just listening" audio book.

    If someone had to read this book for a project or similar it would be fine to listen to while their eyes followed the words printed on the page as we all read with our eyes faster than we normally listen.

    I will admit here that I did not listen to the sample that Audible put at our disposal perhaps I should have done.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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