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A Dance to the Music of Time: First Movement Audiobook

A Dance to the Music of Time: First Movement

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Publisher's Summary

Anthony Powell's universally acclaimed epic encompasses a four-volume panorama of twentieth century London. Hailed by Time as "brilliant literary comedy as well as a brilliant sketch of the times," A Dance to the Music of Time opens just after World War I. Amid the fever of the 1920s and the first chill of the 1930s, Nick Jenkins and his friends confront sex, society, business, and art.

In the second volume they move to London in a whirl of marriage and adulteries, fashions and frivolities, personal triumphs and failures. These books "provide an unsurpassed picture, at once gay and melancholy, of social and artistic life in Britain between the wars" (Arthur Schlesinger, Jr.).

The third volume follows Nick into army life and evokes London during the blitz. In the climactic final volume, England has won the war and must now count the losses. Four very different young men on the threshold of manhood dominate this opening volume of A Dance to the Music of Time. The narrator, Jenkinsa budding writer shares a room with Templer, already a passionate womanizer, and Stringham, aristocratic and reckless. Widermerpool, as hopelessly awkward as he is intensely ambitious, lurks on the periphery of their world. Amid the fever of the 1920s and the first chill of the 1930s, these four gain their initiations into sex, society, business, and art. Considered a masterpiece of modern fiction, Powell's epic creates a rich panorama of life in England between the wars. Includes these novels: A Question of Upbringing, A Buyer's Market, The Acceptance World.

As an added bonus, when you purchase our Audible Modern Vanguard production of Anthony Powell's book, you'll also receive an exclusive Jim Atlas interview. This interview – where James Atlas interviews Charles McGrath about the life and work of Anthony Powell – begins as soon as the audiobook ends.

This production is part of our Audible Modern Vanguard line, a collection of important works from groundbreaking authors.

©1951 Anthony Powell (P)2010 Audible, inc.

What the Critics Say

"Anthony Powell is the best living English novelist by far. His admirers are addicts, let us face it, held in thrall by a magician." (Chicago Tribune)

"A book which creates a world and explores it in depth, which ponders changing relationships and values, which creates brilliantly living and diverse characters and then watches them grow and change in their milieu. . . . Powell's world is as large and as complex as Proust's." (New York Times)

"Vance's narration captivates listeners throughout this outstanding examination of a life in progress." (AudioFile)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.3 (579 )
5 star
 (169)
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Overall
3.4 (361 )
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1 star
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Story
4.0 (368 )
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
 (26)
Performance
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  •  
    Thomas Columbus, OH, United States 11-29-11
    Thomas Columbus, OH, United States 11-29-11 Member Since 2010
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    49
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "The music's too slow"

    For those of you who are fans of Anthony Powell's Magnum Opus, I'm happy for you. I, however, so slow and tedious that I have stopped listening about half way through the first section of the first book. The narrator seems at the same time to be pretentious, boring, and withholding of information. The pace is incredibly slow. The events are trivial, and I just don't find that I care about the characters. I realize that some people find Mr. Powell's work superb and entertaining. I find myself dreading the remainder of this book, much less listening to the remaining books in this series. So I'm cutting my losses now.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jana 02-10-11
    Jana 02-10-11 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
    182
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    259
    43
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    8
    2
    Overall
    "A Wasted Credit - This is Unlistenable!"

    I don't know what I was thinking when I chose this book, because many reviews are bad and boy are they right, now that I look at them more closely after my bad experience starting this book. I am only 1 hour into this and know that I will never pick it up again. Even Simon Vance can't make this an enjoyable listen. Dull, set in a time and place that is not identified and the author writes in a way that seems meant to obfiscate for no good reason. And did I mention dull? Do yourself a favor and look elsewhere.

    1 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jeanne 09-15-13
    Jeanne 09-15-13 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    31
    12
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
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    "Utterly boring"
    Would you try another book from Anthony Powell and/or Simon Vance?

    NO! This is a book about the vapid lives of the rich need-do-wells. I've listened for 2.5 hours and am bored, bored, bored. And Simon Vance's prissy, arrogant voice makes it even more tiresome.


    What could Anthony Powell have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    write a compelling story


    What didn’t you like about Simon Vance’s performance?

    His oh-so prissy voice


    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Vicki Montpelier, VA, United States 02-11-13
    Vicki Montpelier, VA, United States 02-11-13 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
    46
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    427
    67
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    FOLLOWING
    1
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    "DULL"
    Would you try another book from Anthony Powell and/or Simon Vance?

    I tried this book twice but found it incredibly dull. There isn't one character that inspires empathy or is even the slightest bit interesting.


    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Richmond Rabinowitz 04-19-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
    12
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    108
    18
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    1
    7
    Overall
    "too slow"

    I almost never give up on books but I just couldn't do this one. Simon Vance does a good job but this is way to pointless.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    LS Encino, CA, US 04-14-11
    LS Encino, CA, US 04-14-11 Member Since 2010
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    4
    1
    Overall
    "Pretentious boring and plotless"

    How I wish I had read ALL the reviews instead of the first few - this is one of the most awful audio books - pretentious, plot-less, devoid of any characters worth connecting to - and after a few hours of struggling to find some value - I gave up. What a waste of money. And after I had just listened to Ken Follett's and Nelson De Mille's amazing books, the let-down was even worse. Not only was the book itself pointless, but the reader had this dreadful nasal snobbish upper class British accent that was hard to listen to. Sigh. What a disappointment.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Barbara Jacksonville, FL, United States 03-19-11
    Barbara Jacksonville, FL, United States 03-19-11 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    241
    11
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    FOLLOWING
    1
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    Overall
    "Dissapointed"

    I love a long listen and was excited about this book. I have never downloaded a book and then not finished it but this was the exception. I gave it 6 hours and wanted to stick a fork in my eye.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Elizabeth 01-28-11
    Elizabeth 01-28-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
    397
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    889
    46
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    13
    0
    Overall
    "Devoid of life, plotless, pointless...."

    I'll make this short: After trying repeatedly to "get into" the story and even skipping around in search of even the slightest trace of a plot or "hook" into this this book, I've officially given up. Good for insomnia, but little else.

    0 of 3 people found this review helpful

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