This is the third book in the Old Filth trilogy (Old Filth, The Man in the Wooden Hat, Last Friends). Last Friends depicts the marriage of Edward Feathers and Betty as seen through the eyes of Edward’s friend and Betty's lover Terry Veneering.
©2013 Jane Gardam (P)2013 Audible, Inc.
This third book in Gardam's Old Filth trilogy is fun, yet not quite as good as the first two installments. Edward and Betty Feathers and Terry Veneering have passed on, and the story continues with the lesser characters in the series, most prominently Fiscal Smith and Dulcie, widow of Pastry Willie, the judge who was Betty's godfather. Much of the novel is flashback telling Terry Veneering's past as the son of an impoverished mother and an Odessan circus performer who ends up making it good. Recommended for fans of this series.
The biggest problem I had was the change in reader. Graeme Malcom, who read the first two installments, was perfect. Roger Watson makes the characters--especially the females--sound like caricatures.
I read this book as soon as it came out in Kindle. I loved all three of the "Old Filth" trilogy. I both read and listened to all three of them. They all had the charm and impact of old fashioned fairy tales, especially when read by their skillful and talented narrators. Lots of danger, mystery, passion and life long grudges, and somehow being funny as well.
Graeme Malcolm's reading of the first two books in the trilogy, Old Filth and The Man in the Wooden Hat, were perfect -- beautfully done. Why switch for the third? Watson makes all of Jane Gardam's wonderful characters sound whiny and bored. I put the book down.
Retired to mountains of California. Sell on eBay as Prsilla. No TV. Volunteer in wildlife rehab. Knit, sew or embroider while listening.
The book begins with the main character's funeral. And it just gets better. By all means read the books in this series in order. This is Book 3. I most enjoyed learning the background of the one character who had a warm family life, was a brilliant lawyer, and was heartily hated by Eddie, aka Old Filth. This book fills us in on his whole interesting life from his parents to the time as a very elderly man he moves in next door to Eddie, who gets locked out one lonely Christmas in a bad storm with no electricity or telephone, so the two of them have to make the best of it when Eddie knocks on Terry's door. I need to listen to all the books again because there are some women in this story that I have difficulty placing. One of them is the widowed wife of an old judge nicknamed Pastry. It seems a lot of the women admired Terry from some distance. This woman is also concerned with a smarmy old lawyer named Fred Smith. He was handy on Eddie's and Betty's wedding day, so he was grabbed in his T-shirt to serve as Best Man. He boasts for the rest of his life about being Best Man. Highlight of his life! Nobody really likes him. This hard to like character invites himself to people's houses or arrives unannounced and expects to stay a couple of weeks.
The book ends abruptly, seems to me. I was moving on in my own mind anyway. However, it's a good and enjoyable Book 3 in this trilogy. There's a different narrator, but I got used to him quickly and he reads with great poetry. I need to listen again because these are not the then-what-happened kind of story. It's about details fitting together years later. Very rich listen.
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