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Shadow of the Moon | [M. M. Kaye]

Shadow of the Moon

The author of The Far Pavilions returns us once again to the vast, intoxicating romance of India under the British Raj. Shadow of the Moon is the story of Winter de Ballesteros, a beautiful English heiress come home to her beloved India. It is also the tale of Captain Alex Randall, her protector, who aches to possess her. Forged in the fires of a war that threatens to topple an empire, their tale is the saga of a desperate and unforgettable love that consumes all in its thrall.
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Publisher's Summary

The author of The Far Pavilions returns us once again to the vast, intoxicating romance of India under the British Raj. Shadow of the Moon is the story of Winter de Ballesteros, a beautiful English heiress come home to her beloved India. It is also the tale of Captain Alex Randall, her protector, who aches to possess her. Forged in the fires of a war that threatens to topple an empire, their tale is the saga of a desperate and unforgettable love that consumes all in its thrall. Filled with the mystery of moonlit palace gardens and the whisperings of passion and intrigue, M. M. Kaye evokes an era at once of its time, yet timeless.

©1956, 1957, 1979 M.M. Kaye (P)2012 Audible, Inc.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (70 )
5 star
 (38)
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3 star
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4.4 (61 )
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Story
4.2 (61 )
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
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Performance
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  •  
    Hike16 Connecticut 10-15-13
    Hike16 Connecticut 10-15-13 Member Since 2013

    Hike16

    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
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    "Wonderful story"
    What made the experience of listening to Shadow of the Moon the most enjoyable?

    This book is a long-time favorite. Even though I've read it multiple times, listening to an audio version makes any book new again.


    What aspect of Tara Ochs’s performance would you have changed?

    I was disappointed by her mispronunciation of words (vehemence and desultory are two examples) as well as inconsistent British accents for the same characters. Shame on the director and producer for allowing it too.


    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Evelyn Starr 04-04-15 Member Since 2012
    ratings
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    24
    2
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    Story
    "Great Epic!"

    I felt like I was in India during the Victorian age!
    A great epic book. It was fun to watch a character grow up.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Annette 03-21-15
    Annette 03-21-15 Member Since 2010
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    64
    1
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    Performance
    Story
    "Much too long for the story!"
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    No. While the storyline was very acceptable and interesting the length of the book was not.


    How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

    The book 34 hours long, excessively descriptive and the story could have been told in half the time without all the adjectives and introspection.


    Have you listened to any of Tara Ochs’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    No


    Did Shadow of the Moon inspire you to do anything?

    No


    Any additional comments?

    I am not sure if the story was based on fact, but if so it was well researched and I would read another of her books f it was shorter.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    S. Jones 03-16-15
    S. Jones 03-16-15
    HELPFUL VOTES
    110
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    79
    24
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    "Superficial Romantic Melodrama"

    "Shadow of the Moon" is strictly for fans of melodramatic romance novels. It is not a great story: it is, in fact, completely overwritten by an author who never uses one word when she can use 20, who can't introduce so much as a minor, fleeting character without providing their pointless back stories, who repeats herself over and over. You can skip chapters three at a time without missing a thing. As a book reader, the narrator is O.K., but she she accentuates its flaws by failing to bring it vibrantly to life.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    L. Johnson 02-23-15
    L. Johnson 02-23-15 Member Since 2013
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    12
    1
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    Story
    "Wonderful"

    Great narrating excellent story. I highly recommend. I couldn't stop listening even late into the night.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    K G 12-31-14
    K G 12-31-14
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
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    Performance
    Story
    "Amazing story! Disappointing reader."
    Would you try another book from M. M. Kaye and/or Tara Ochs?

    I grew up reading M.M.Kaye's books, and loved them. I own a bedraggled first-edition copy of Shadow of the Moon, and was looking forward to hearing it as an audiobook.

    I have Trade Wind also in book and audiobook form. I own The Far Pavilions in book form also. I am looking at getting that one in audiobook form, but would not consider it if it were read by Tara Ochs.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Alex Randall. He is a man of character and principle.


    How could the performance have been better?

    I am dismayed at the sheer number of mis-pronounced words and place names in the audiobook. If we have access to the internet to hear words we are not sure how to pronounce, it seems that Tara Ochs would also have that access, at the very least!


    If this book were a movie would you go see it?

    It depends on whether the movie was made by Americans or Brits.


    Any additional comments?

    Please choose your readers on the basis of their ability to read aloud, not on who they are.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer nowhere ny 06-08-14
    Amazon Customer nowhere ny 06-08-14 Member Since 2015

    sian5399

    ratings
    REVIEWS
    2
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Has always been a great story."
    Would you consider the audio edition of Shadow of the Moon to be better than the print version?

    Not necessarily. Have owned a printed copy for nearly 30 years and have always enjoyed reading it, when time permitted. In the last few years I have come to appreciate the portability of audio books, and the luxury to listen while engaged in other tasks not condusive to holding a book.


    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Tara Ochs?

    Vikas Adams who is the narrator of The Far Pavilions. His voice and characterizations were spot on for the story. He brought all of it to life.
    Tara Ochs has a good voice for nonfiction, but is far too bland for performing.


    Any additional comments?

    If possible redo the narration for this story and get Vikas Adams to it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    book worm 02-10-14
    book worm 02-10-14
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
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    "Well worth it"
    If you could sum up Shadow of the Moon in three words, what would they be?

    epic, spell-binding, earthy


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Shadow of the Moon?

    all of it


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

    I like this narrator very much. It was wonderful to hear the narrative in American English, and then the characters in British English, and the various Indian accents. Some narrators go overboard, overdo each different character. This narrator lets us know that the speaker has changed, and gives a light accent for each character.


    Any additional comments?

    Well worth it. Love the very long, epic novels that allow one to be lost in the experience. I've had a lot of problems with the heavy Brit accent in other books, ie Shogun, and some of the Wilbur Smith works which I had to return because it was just too hard to wade through the poor narration. Hard to tell when one character leaves off, and another begins, with the heavy Brit accent. Great to hear the narrative in Shadow of the Moon in non-Brit English! Still not sure if this will equal the superb Far Pavilions, but few audio books ever have.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-8 of 8 results
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  • Helene
    Brunssum, United Kingdom
    8/18/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "This is my favourite book....but oh dear!!!!"
    What made the experience of listening to Shadow of the Moon the most enjoyable?

    This is a fabulous Indian epic weaving between fact and fiction, dealing with the year prior to and the 1857 Indian Mutiny. The major characters are fictional but there is a good spattering of factual people and events in the narrative which add a modicum of true history to the story.M M Kaye spent most of her childhood and early adulthood in this wonderful sub continent, she had an innate understanding of the peoples and customs. Coupled with this, her family had a long involvement with India and one of her ancestors, Sir John Kaye, wrote a definitive account of the Indian Mutiny of 1857.


    What did you like best about this story?

    This is a work of fiction which includes a great deal of fact presented in a very undry form.


    How could the performance have been better?

    Quintessentially an Anglo-Indian story read by an American, whose regard to pronunciation and punctuation leaves a great deal to be desired. It seems to be a straight reading with a cursory attempt to use accent and tone to differentiate between the characters. The pronunciation is frankly appalling; the place (probably fictional) where all the main action takes place is Lunjore NOT Lunyo. Obviously the narrator is familiar with American- Latino pronunciation and uses that form rather than the Spanish which is intended. Ms Kaye also in the book wrote footnotes to assist in the correct way to interpret the names and places, i.e Kishan Prasad said Kishan Pra-shad not Kishane Prashade and sahib would be prounounced "sarb" by an Indian, I could carry on but you can get the gist!She also does not seem to take account of the punctuation which makes the narrative sound like it has been read only without being understood and "felt".I have read this book every couple of years for the last 30, it never fails to move me, so I feel, that even I could make a better fist of the performance. Please let me have a go?


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    No, it is a book that has to be listened to slowly in order not to miss the nuances. I listen mainly in the car or walking the dogs, so have to take my time.


    Any additional comments?

    Please, please get an English person to read this book, American English just will not do. The English also have the history with India, the Raj and the East India Company (John Company) anything else will not do!

    8 of 8 people found this review helpful
  • Amanda
    London, United Kingdom
    1/22/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Wonderful story with both action and romance"
    If you could sum up Shadow of the Moon in three words, what would they be?

    Great romantic action


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    It's hard to say which character is my favourite. Apart from the two main protagonists who we all love, Conway Barton and Lord Carlyon are great characters to hate as they are such monuments of selfishness and self-interest.


    What does Tara Ochs bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

    I love Tara's weird and wonderful English accents. It's always a mystery to me why anyone would get an American to read a story based in colonial India, but Tara valiantly struggles with a variety of English accents. Though they don't always work (some of the English officers sound a bit on the cockney side!), I got used to them and started to enjoy their effect. They are slightly annoying at first, but stick with it and they become old friends!


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    The horror and savage nature of the Indian mutiny is so well told from an English point of view. M M Kaye doesn't flinch from some pretty unpleasant details, and really gives a powerful feeling of what it might have been like to be there. I particularly liked (well, not liked, but you know what I mean) the individual deaths on the first day of the mutiny of characters who were either very minor or did not appear in the book apart from to die - their deaths were moving, horrific and helped to understand all that happens afterwards.


    Any additional comments?

    Everything you want from historical fiction - personal stories against a grand backdrop of real life-changing events, an exotic location, heroes and idiots, courage and cowardice, love and hate, life and death on a grand scale. What's not to like?

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Lisa
    Redruth, United Kingdom
    12/1/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great story, shame about the narrator"
    Where does Shadow of the Moon rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    I have loved this story for many years and it was great to be able to have it read to you, the narrator managed to get through the story, though not without mistakes both in accent and dialogue. I winced at her pronunciation of certain words, and her pitiful attempts at some of the accents; overall it sounded like an American too much.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Winter de Ballasteros - engaging, smart, loyal and resourceful.... who couldn't help but admire her


    How could the performance have been better?

    Different narrator who understands how the English accents are used; I hate to be so negative but in this case it is a must.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    The start of the mutiny, the Colonel facing his troops and them disobeying him, you could feel his pain and anguish at having lost the respect of his men.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Tina H
    2/6/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Wonderfull story"
    What did you like most about Shadow of the Moon?

    M M Kaye is a brilliant descriptive writer. She makes you feel like you are there


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Winter, she has such an interesting life


    Have you listened to any of Tara Ochs’s other performances? How does this one compare?

    no


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

    Some of it is very sad as it is set during the uprisings against the British Raj in India with very graphic descriptions of mass killings. On the happy side the romance between Winter and Alex Randell is heart-warming


    Any additional comments?

    The narrator has problems with the accents and pronunciation of many of the Indian words

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Janine
    BRACKNELL, United Kingdom
    1/15/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Magnificent saga of savagery & beauty of the Raj"

    MM Kaye has written many books, most of which are not worth reading. She has also written two books about India and the Raj: this and The Far Pavilions. These two are unbelievably brilliant.

    This book is about the first Indian Mutiny. MM Kaye beautifully describes the savagery and magnificence of India, and, while Eurocentric, still portrays a depth of understanding and love of the country.

    The story follows a young woman of Anglo-Spanish heritage, Winter, who, through a strange series of circumstances ,is born and raised until the age of 5 or so in an Indian palace. She is then sent 'Home' to England until she can return to India. She marries a dreadful slob who makes her life a miserable prison. Her love for her country makes her life tolerable, that and her hopeless love of a British administrator of her husband's district.

    Alex Randall shares her love of India. He is one of the administrators of 'John Company', the East India Company who administered India before the Mutiny and the annexation of the country by the Crown of Victoria. He has a deep love and understanding of the people of India and is one of the few who recognises the signs of the coming Mutiny. His warnings are ignored and he watches helplessly as the Mutiny sparks and explodes.

    The story is beautifully told with loving descriptions and balance. Alex and Winter's love unfolds against this backdrop.

    I'm in two minds about the narration. Many of the Indian words are not pronounced correctly but generally the accents are believable. She manages to cover Indian, Queen's English, 'common' English, even Russian accents, well. Overall, a good job. Easy to listen to and engaging.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Hilary
    WORCESTER, United Kingdom
    10/26/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Terrible narration"
    Would you try another book written by M. M. Kaye or narrated by Tara Ochs?

    Not if it's narrated by Tara Ochs.


    What didn’t you like about Tara Ochs’s performance?

    Her narration was awful - not just poor pronunciation of Indian names and words but her English let her down too. Painful listening and ruined the story for me.


    If this book were a film would you go see it?

    Possibly


    Any additional comments?

    A beautiful story spoiled by the wrong narrator.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Bedelia
    burnopfield, newcastle on tyne, United Kingdom
    3/23/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "very interesting"
    Where does Shadow of the Moon rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    enjoyed listening to story of India as good as other book Far Pavilions,


    What about Tara Ochs’s performance did you like?

    very good at character parts


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

    It made our upper crust in India to be ignorant fools and made you think about our Empire, no wonder we lost it.


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Amazon Customer
    UK
    8/24/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Fantastic book, beautifully read by Tara Ochs"
    Would you listen to Shadow of the Moon again? Why?

    This was the second time I had read this book, and I would definitely read it again. I love the slow build-up, the huge cast of characters, some of whom you love, and some you hate, the historical facts that helps you understand the bigger picture, and the amazing descriptions of India itself. The book is beautifully written and read.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Shadow of the Moon?

    Almost every scene with Winter and Alex is memorable because of the tension and chemistry between them.


    Which character – as performed by Tara Ochs – was your favourite?

    When I first read the book as an impressionable teenager, I was irritated by Winter, but I grew to like and understand her more during this reading of the book. But my favourite character was Alex Randall - principled, decisive, handsome and capable. What more could a woman want?


    Any additional comments?

    This book is well-plotted and it moves at a leisurely pace as it very gradually builds up the sense of unease and tension that explodes into the Indian mutiny. Definitely worth a read if you love well-written historical fiction.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-8 of 8 results

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