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Montmorency: Thief, Liar, Gentleman | [Eleanor Updale]

Montmorency: Thief, Liar, Gentleman

When a petty thief falls though a glass roof in his attempt to escape from the police, what should have been the death of him marks the beginning of a while new life. After his broken body is reconstructed by an ambitious young doctor, he is released from prison, and, with the help of Victorian London's extensive sewer system, he becomes the most elusive burglar in the city.
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Publisher's Summary

When a petty thief falls though a glass roof in his attempt to escape from the police, what should have been the death of him marks the beginning of a while new life. After his broken body is reconstructed by an ambitious young doctor, he is released from prison, and, with the help of Victorian London's extensive sewer system, he becomes the most elusive burglar in the city. He adopts a dual existence as a respectable, wealthy gentleman named Montmorency, and his degenerate servant Scarper. But Montmorency must always be on guard. The smallest mistake could reveal his secret and ruin both his lives.

Eleanor Updale's writing is witty and wholly original. With a unique perspective and a voice reminiscent of Edgar Allan Poe, Montmorency is a cleverly told, gripping adventure story.

©2003 Eleanor Updale; (P)2004 Random House, Inc. Listening Library, an imprint of the Random House Audio Publishing Group

What the Critics Say

"Montmorency's heart-pounding brushes with discovery add a palpable layer of suspense." (Booklist)
"Readers will find themselves drawn not only to Montmorency's compellingly bizarre biography, but also to his clever and mischievous nature that eventually leads him to both a realization of his past wrongs and a valid career where he can put his "best" skills to good use." (School Library Journal)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.0 (120 )
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3.8 (53 )
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4.6 (51 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Adira Torotno, ON, Canada 04-15-05
    Adira Torotno, ON, Canada 04-15-05

    Writer of YA fiction books: "Little Jane Silver" and "Little Jane and the Nameless Isle"

    HELPFUL VOTES
    17
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    "Montmorency"

    Stephen Fry is an incredible narrator of this book, making all the characters and descriptions really come alive. He does a fantastic job. Can't wait to hear him as the voice of the book in Hitchiker's movie. The story of Montmorency is fascinating too, especially at the beginning when he is plotting. I loved how all the details of the plan are explained. You really get the sense of someone taking you into their confidence and telling you delicious secrets. Too bad the ending is a considerable let down and just a set up for making this an ongoing series.

    11 of 11 people found this review helpful
  •  
    C. Conrad Oregon coast 01-03-09
    C. Conrad Oregon coast 01-03-09 Member Since 2008

    boocat

    HELPFUL VOTES
    7
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    "Splendid! Can't wait for the next three books!"

    Montmorency, read by Stephen Fry is simply wonderful. I must get the second book, Montmorency on the Rocks, also read by Stephen Fry. It is carried by the British Audible, but not by Audible.com (USA) as of yet.
    I hope Audible will pay Mr. Fry to read the third and fourth books in the series.

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Constance New York, NY, United States 08-13-10
    Constance New York, NY, United States 08-13-10 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Fun, well written escapist fiction"

    Unlike a lot of other escapist fun reading, Montmorency is very well written. Imaginative, involving plot pulls you right in to the historical era and the moral dilemmas that the protagonist encounters as he uses wit and daring to pull himself out of prison, the gutter, and near-death to the highest society. Loved this "underdog fights back" story with lots of historical color, authentic sounding dialogue and a great ending! Great narration on this audiobook adds to the enjoyment.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Roman Novosibirsk, Russia 10-03-10
    Roman Novosibirsk, Russia 10-03-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Wonderful book"

    Great stuff!!! Story is quick paced and picaresque, characters are believable and alive. Stephen Fry as usual does a marvellous job reading, no, rather performing the book. I would love to get further installments of the Montmorency series. My credit was well spent. I would recommend this book to anyone who loved classic adventure literature as a kid.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Evova 12-13-09
    Evova 12-13-09 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    80
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    "Great story, great storyteller"

    Montmorency is a great little story that is told by Stephen Fry whose voice add an extra dimension. The story is captivating on its own but Stephen Fry's beautiful voice brings it alive in a way that makes it hard to stop listening. Well worth a listen!

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Marina afton, MN, USA 09-21-08
    Marina afton, MN, USA 09-21-08
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
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    "Good story made magical by Stephen Fry"

    I try to listen to as many Stephen Fry's reading titles as I can find. I only wish Audible would have more!
    He makes every story Magical!

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Robert Clayton, NC, United States 11-17-09
    Robert Clayton, NC, United States 11-17-09 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Fabulous."

    Stephen Fry is a man of extraordinary oratory gifts and they are evident in this reading. Montmorency is not just for kids. In fact, my husband and I just finished it and were surprised that it was tagged as part of a "young readers" series. Suspenseful, witty, fun.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    DRR Olympia, WA 07-09-14
    DRR Olympia, WA 07-09-14 Member Since 2015

    DRR

    ratings
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    3
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    Performance
    Story
    "WOW!"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Montmorency to be better than the print version?

    OH for sure!


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Montmorency/Scarper. He acts so classy but in reality he is a genius thief. He acts as completely different people with different ideals, almost making you wonder about multiple personality disorder!


    Which character – as performed by Stephen Fry – was your favorite?

    Montmorency/Scarper


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    Gentleman by day, Crook by night


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ulrika 06-13-14
    Ulrika 06-13-14 Member Since 2011
    ratings
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    2
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Brilliant"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes, it's highly entertaining and Stephen Fry is a delight to listen to.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The humor in the story


    Which character – as performed by Stephen Fry – was your favorite?

    Both the thief and the gentleman were superb.


    Any additional comments?

    Stephen Fry makes this audio book into an experience which is much larger than just reading or listening to a book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kindle Customer 12-31-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Excellent story and narration"
    If you could sum up Montmorency in three words, what would they be?

    Evokes the Classics


    What other book might you compare Montmorency to and why?

    The A.J.Raffles stories, written by E.W. Hornung. Montmorency is somewhat Raffle-ish, and also not unlike an inversion of a certain Society burglar that Raffles snares.Hornung was the brother-in-law of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, whose characters lend some tang to Montmorency as well. The character development and use of coincidence also reminds one of Charles Dickens.


    What does Stephen Fry bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Mastery! One of the very best narrators there is. Impeccable narration and voices bring the story to life.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    No, I just enjoyed it.


    Any additional comments?

    This is a very smart book that provides a new and original revival to the classic London mystery genre. The splitting of one person into two characters by disguise and persona was very well done, as was the portrayal of the schism between classes. And the ending was very satisfying. As a first novel it is hard to criticize. The book could have been a little longer and still made a fast read, which would have allowed the plot events to develop at a more leisurely rate. This would also give some more space between the Dickenson-type coincidences that helped move the story along.There were a few "continuity" items, including a couple of minor language neologisms that could have been omitted, and one pervasive olfactory sensation that was conveniently omitted after the first mention, but hard to overlook in its absence, as it would have provided a pervasive and powerful clue. Perhaps the overly proper Police and perpetrated parties were just too polite to mention it.None of these impeded the enjoyment of the story, and I am sure that the sequels are to be at least as much fun!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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