©2010 Lucinda Riley (P)2011 Audible Ltd
I had high hopes for the book--so many of my favourite themes were promised; few, however, were delivered. The book's greatest lack was forward momentum. Lagging behind that was succinctness.
Her style is not to my liking, so no.
Beth Chalmers has a talent for bringing characters to life. Her skill at regional accents and her dramatisation made it easy to picture the people. Unfortunately, some of her characters were grating. The sister of the protagonist, in particular, set my teeth on edge. I turned down the volume whenever her particular character was talking.
Time and time again, the motives behind even simple actions were stated and explained, giving the impression the author had little respect for her readers' intelligence. When I found myself involuntarily rolling my eyes and groaning aloud, I realised it was time to call it quits. On the positive side, I came away with a deeper appreciation of what critics and writing coaches mean when they use the descriptor "overwritten."
I had to give up on this one after several hours of listening, and it came down to a simple matter of trust. I lost all faith in the author's ability to get to the point.
Somewhat entertaining but nothing is left to the imagination. It sounded more like a script than a novel. It could have been much shorter with less boring conversation.
I enjoyed the book, but would probably not listen to it again. There were too many stories within stories, which made it feel a little dragged out in places.
This could possibley have been done over two books, or maybe settle for less is more in terms of storyline twists.
Not sure that I particularly liked the narration style.
Julia was the stand out character, with the others revolving around her in some way.
A long haul for an audio book, but overall nice story.
I enjoyed this story. I could not stand the narrator when she used her "faux" accents. Had she just read in her normal voice instead of "trying" to act, the whole experience would have been far better, but....instead it was really annoying and really bad!!!
She seems to follow the same plot as her other novel. This book left me disliking almost all of the characters.
Engaging, lovely, fascinating.
When Kit gets to fly to Thailand to settle his love to Julia at the expense and generosity of Lidia, followed by the purchase of the estate;
I have not. None the less, this was perfect.
When Julia plays the gran piano to Lidia.
The most fascinating love story I read to date.
just didn't hold my interest. Slow start - didn't make me eager to listen anymore.
Family stories of long ago. Unfortunate circumstances.
I would compare it to Kate Morton’s The Shifting Fog or the distant hours or house at Riverton to mention a few
Love her British accent and the way she changed her voice to represent each character
First Bill for his loyalty, then Olivia – she need not suffer for that long
Beautiful story. I enjoyed every moment of it. It is interesting the journey life takes each and every one of us. I wish Harry did not marry Olivia because he truly did not love her. They never had a child – the main purpose for marrying. Poor Olivia – I think when life hands you lemon, you make lemonade out of it. Why live a miserable life because of someone!
I so wanted to get into this story BUT could not stand one more minute of the nasal pompous whining accents.
"Such variety - real escapism"
Really enjoyed this audio. So many different stories in one, without the usual confusion if you get a bit distracted when listening. A heart warming love story, but also one of class and culture. Would highly recomment this and will probably listen again. Excellent audio recording and story.
"Exuberant and unsubtle"
Were the characters in this book so cliched that they verged on the surreal, or is it just that Beth Chalmers voice is really hard to listen to? There is no doubt that Beth hams up posh people's voices till they sound so savagely clipped and cold that it's hard to connect to the characters; and she hams up the romance so much that her women sound tooth clenchingly saccharine and slightly freakish....But surely it wouldn't have been so painful if she'd had less irritating dialogue to convey?
"An enchanting story of love and beauty."
A delightful story covering several generations. A tale woven around Orchids. From start to finish I was transfixed (I did a lot of house sorting out and cleaning and sewing repairs as I wanted to continue to listen).
I loved the sudden extra plot near the end of the book, very well done.
Anyone who wants a good gentle story really needs to get this book. Little bit of history too of the far east and of caring for Orchids.
Well done Lucinda Riley and beautifully read by Ruth Chalmers.
This is a sweet and romantic story.
I do not recommend listening to this book in this unabridged 18 hour version. The plot is not a dense one and does not merit such a long narrative. It bored me and I longed to be able to skip forward through pages like you can with a book. I worked out the big denouement of the plot very early on and hung on in the anticipation that I might be wrong. I wasn't. There was one minor surprise in the plot, and the end was hard to believe, but the main plot was very predictable.
I found Beth Chalmers' narration a bit tedious, as she gave many of the characters the same nasally posh voice.
A nice idea but the characters were constrained by the storyline, instead of the other way around. They should have been driving a more engrossing plot. This was predictable, for the most part, though well narrated.
Not a favourite for me.
"Utterly ridiculous "
Had to suspend belief, logic and judgement to get to the end. Annoying and unlikeable and one dimensional characters didnt help
"A good listen - in the main"
I enjoyed this audio book very much, the story moved at a good pace with lots of interesting locations, characters and storyline with twists and turns
I did however find some of the "voices" of the narrator very irritating and initially this interfered quite a lot with how I "got into" the story, so much so that I wondered whether or not to continue.
"A great "read""
Different to my usual thriller book but kept me listening. Well worth a listen with lots of little twists and turns and an essence of history and travel.
"A really nice book"
I really enjoyed this audiobook. I would have given it 5 stars but I reserve that for my fave fave books. There are twists in the story yet it has a reassuring plot that lets you empathise with the characters to make a really thoughtful good story.
"From debutantes to Thailand"
I really enjoyed this book, there were a few contrasting themes running through it but I think the author had a great empathy with them all. Narrator did a good job with such a variety of characters. Nicely tied up in the ending. Don't hesitate to download this.
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