When Sylvester, the Duke of Salford, first meets Phoebe Marlow, he finds her dull and insipid. She finds him insufferably arrogant. But when a series of unforeseen events leads them to be stranded together in a lonely country inn, they are both forced to reassess their hastily formed opinions, and begin a new-found liking and respect for each other.
Sylvester calls to mind the satirical genius of a Jane Austen novel and is adored for its wit and a fast-paced plot, which ranges across a myriad of settings.
©2009 Naxos Audiobooks; (P)2009 Naxos Audiobooks
"Although this is an abridged version of Heyer's work, British actor Richard Armitage makes this exceptionally fun to listen to....Armitage's reading is warm, lively, simply brilliant. He easily voices all characters and regional and class differences with ease and captures the underlying tension and growing romantic interest between Phoebe and Sylvester. The period classical music between chapters adds wonderful, appropriate atmosphere." (Soundcommentary.com)
If you have seen any of The Hobbit movies and found yourself weirdly obsessed by a Dwarf named Thorin, it is because he is played by the fabulous Richard Armitage, who reads this audio adaptation of Georgette Heyer’s Sylvester. Armitage is one of those rare breeds of reader that, once you hear him read one thing, you promptly decide that you could listen to him read anything… a phone book, that chapter of the Bible that is only family lineage, the Apple iTunes user agreement, but most especially, any of Georgette Heyer’s excellent novels. The perfect union of Heyer’s extremely well drawn, recognisable characters and Armitage’s ability to give them each a distinct voice, makes the listener want to keep listening forever. This was an abridged version of the book, and while they did an excellent job of it, I was sort of saddened because it meant that it had to come to an end before it otherwise would have.
Even though it's abridged, I decided to listen to this book just to hear Richard Armitage and because I love Georgette Heyer. It was worth it! Armitage does a fabulous job!
This is one of the most ridiculous, ludicrous, wonderful things I have come across in a long time. Richard Armitage's performance is spot on, carrying the listener through a satirical Victorian romp.
Great fun for a few hours listening.
The story itself is not the best of Heyer, but this Audiobook version is fantastic! Because it's narrated by Richard Armitage and it's "abridged".
Heyer's novels tend to be overly long with unnecessary details, but this version eliminated these parts. And Armitage did a great job bringing each character. Especially, Sylvester. Armitage made Sylvester more likable than original.
I highly recommend this particular audio version.
Richard Armitage is a superb narrator!! I was completely captivated by the story and his performance. I would highly recommend this to my friends.
I selected this version of "Sylvester" shortly after becoming a member of Audible and did not look closely enough to notice that this was an abridged audiobook. When I listened to it, the story did not make much sense. Several years later, Audible obtained the unabridged version so I took a chance on it and loved it! In fact, it is one of my top five favorite Georgette Heyer books (Frederica, Friday's Child, Venetia, Devil's Cub and Sylvester being my favorites in both written and audiobook format). So my recommendation is that you skip this version and go for the unabridged one instead.
I don't normally go for Romance, but I do have a soft spot for Georgette Heyer. I have quite admired Richard Armitage ever since the BBC Robin Hood version. The Armitage-Heyer combination was just too compelling to resist. The narration is fabulously done and it's a terribly cute story.
My only complaint is that the novel is abridged. I'll make no grand claims about the literary merits of the Romance novel genre, but Heyer is one of the few authors in the genre who seem to possess a literary subtlety. That subtlety is entirely lost through the abridgement and all that remains is a cutesy story read by a lovely narrator. I can't help thinking that Heyer deserves better.
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