For Hardy, the loves and sorrows of ordinary characters are as much the material of history as any record of emperors and generals. The present tale is founded largely on testimony; the external incidents of the plot reproduce the recollections of elders known to Hardy in his childhood. If wholly transcribed, their recollections would have filled a volume thrice the length of The Trumpet-Major.
Instead, Hardy offers a complex weave of historical fact and fiction, a genre of his own that explores the subversive effects of ordinary human desires on systematized versions of history.
(P)2009 Blackstone Audio, Inc.
I have been quite taken by the Hardy oeuvre: have both read and listened to more than ten books; have swooned over nearly all; but this one is by far the worst. I tried to get past Mr. Vance's sing-song and condescending narration but couldn't because there was not enough character draw to keep me engaged in this story. After 90 minutes, decided I'd given this enough time and deleted it from my phone..
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