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These Old Shades Audiobook

These Old Shades

Society believes the worst of Justin Alastair, the notorious Duke of Avon who is clearly proud of his Sobriquet, Satanas. It is he who buys Leon body and soul from a scoundrel in a Paris backstreet.
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Publisher's Summary

Society believes the worst of Justin Alastair, the notorious Duke of Avon who is clearly proud of his Sobriquet, Satanas. It is he who buys Leon body and soul from a scoundrel in a Paris backstreet.

©2002 Georgette Heyer; (P)2014 Audible, Inc.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.4 (518 )
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4.6 (376 )
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4.2 (371 )
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Performance
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  •  
    MsGromit 12-17-15
    MsGromit 12-17-15
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    "One of her best! Terrible narration!"

    Fabulous story! TERRIBLE reader! So many Heyer fans favorite book and with reason! But the narrator got the Duke of Avon all wrong. Disppointing!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jane Austin 07-13-15
    Jane Austin 07-13-15 Member Since 2012
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    "Great story and it's sequel The Devil's Cub"
    Would you listen to These Old Shades again? Why?

    Yes. It is cleverly written.


    What other book might you compare These Old Shades to and why?

    The Moth and The Devil's Cub.


    Which character – as performed by Cornelius Garrett – was your favorite?

    The main character, but all were good.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Booklady1 07-12-15
    Booklady1 07-12-15 Member Since 2014

    booklady1

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    "Great story. Voices disappointing"

    My favorite GH novel is always a good read. However, the voices are wrong. The Duke is supposed to be sensual and mysterious. Instead he sounds blustering. The narrator's own voice would make a better Duke. As usual with this male narrator all the women, young and old, sound like twittering 50 year old matrons.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mary W. Spring Loves Park, IL USA 05-31-15
    Mary W. Spring Loves Park, IL USA 05-31-15 Member Since 2015

    whitstone

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    "Love the story, wished for another reader"
    What did you love best about These Old Shades?

    I'm a Georgette Heyer fan, so I am familiar with her stories. I have always enjoyed the humor she weaves into her romances. The redemption of the Duke is particularly enjoyable and satisfying.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Sometimes I get eager for the end of a story and chafe at the miscellaneous conversation and detail. But Heyer's details and conversation make a satisfying world to live in for just a little while.


    What didn’t you like about Cornelius Garrett’s performance?

    I was relieved when Mr. Garrett got rid of the lisp and affectation about one third of the way through when he was 'reading' for Justin, the Duke of Avon. When he was reading in his normal voice I enjoyed his tone, but his renderings of the voices of the other characters were jarring. Mostly my reaction was that I will avoid books read by him and dig out my old copy of These Old Shades and read it once more for myself. I will not re-listen to this audible book.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Valerie HEATH, OH, United States 04-23-15
    Valerie HEATH, OH, United States 04-23-15 Member Since 2016
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    "Spoiled by narration"

    I put off buying this book until I had all the otherr Georgette Heyers on offer, solely because of the sample audio snippet. I had grave misgivings that I wasn't going to be impressed, and so it proved.
    The voices were cartoonish caricatures and greatly distracted from the story.
    Too bad.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Terra Araluen 02-16-15
    Terra Araluen 02-16-15 Member Since 2014

    Who doesn't enjoy being transported to another world, and traveling on an unforgettable adventure? Thank you audio books! Happy dance <3

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "I adore Georgette Heyer, but..."
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    Of course! It's Georgette Heyer! The woman was a genius!


    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Cornelius Garrett?

    Anyone! Preferably someone younger. Perhaps it's just me, because I am younger, but Garrett's Avion sounded like a shrill, eccentric, 80 year old man (who is supposed to be in his early 40's). It was horrible I tried I really did but a little over an hour in, I gave up. I grant a few of his voices actually did sound quite good for their characters, but that just bothers me more because I know he could have made better choises for the characters. Some of who where possibly the worst I've ever heard. Also his accents where way off base. I'd rather just read the book, and pray I can get those voices back to a normal level in my head!~Apparently some people do not mind this. He is very animated... Perhaps to an older crowd then someone in their early 20's would find this appealing. Just NOT me!


    Was These Old Shades worth the listening time?

    The book was worth it! But not worth possibly hating the characters over because their sound is so appalling to me. I'll just read the book.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Red Diaper Baby Massachusetts USA 01-10-15
    Red Diaper Baby Massachusetts USA 01-10-15 Member Since 2013
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    "Narrator's mistake"

    This narrator seems capable of many voices. Why did he choose such an ugly and inappropriate voice for Avon, the chief character? It is high and grating, almost shouting, with little of the nuance and irony essential to the character, none of the suave drawl which is even mentioned in the text. It spoils a story which would otherwise be enchanting.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Pam West Covina, CA, United States 11-29-14
    Pam West Covina, CA, United States 11-29-14 Member Since 2014
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    "Wanted Alan Rickman, got a deaf Lady Bracknell"

    This is a favorite book of mine, and I could not listen to it. I have listened to other books narrated by Cornelius Garrett, and had no problem with his interpretation, but just could not get over his reading of His Grace, the Duke of Avon. I don't know how many times I have read this book in the last 40 years, but never have I envisioned Avon as peevish and slightly hard of hearing. I don't like giving negative reviews, but just wanted to warn other fans of this novel.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 10-21-14
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Loved the story, but not the narrator"
    What made the experience of listening to These Old Shades the most enjoyable?

    I stopped listening after awhile and just read the Kindle edition. The narrator's voice was so inappropriate to the amazing leading man, that I couldn't bear to hear it.


    What other book might you compare These Old Shades to and why?

    Probably Pride and Prejudice, because there is a gulf between the main characters that comes from their circumstances, but one hopes that they can bridge that gulf and love each other.


    Would you be willing to try another one of Cornelius Garrett’s performances?

    No.


    If you could take any character from These Old Shades out to dinner, who would it be and why?

    The Duke of Avon


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Teela 08-08-14
    Teela 08-08-14
    ratings
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    "Heyer's best. Narration is *almost* perfect."
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Of course! It's one of Georgette Heyer's best and the audiobook was done quite well. Very entertaining!


    Any additional comments?

    Cornelius Garrett does a good job voicing all of the characters, but my biggest complaint (actually, my ONLY complaint) is how he voiced the Duke, Justin Alastair. I think he was going the Anthony Andrews as Sir Percy/the Scarlet Pimpernel route for Avon's voice and for me, it just doesn't work AT ALL. He sounds absurd next to everyone else, especially as the story carries on. Kind of took away from the romance a bit. Other than that, Garrett does an excellent job.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
Sort by:
  • Lindsay
    BLAENAVON, United Kingdom
    6/6/12
    Overall
    "GREAT BOOK FOUND THE VOICE ACTING DIFFICULT"

    I found the voice given to satanas the Duke of Avon querilous when it should have been assured and sardonic. although he sees himself as a great age he is only in his forties and while life was shorter then perhaps, he was a handsome, active virile man not a papery thin elder.

    other voices were Ok to me but the romantic interest should always have the most beguiling voice. We are meant to be bewitched by him while seeing his dark side and this did not happen for me.

    7 of 7 people found this review helpful
  • HelgaCabbage
    UK
    8/7/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Awful narration, great story"
    Would you try another book written by Georgette Heyer or narrated by Cornelius Garrett?

    I love Georgette Heyer books, and own almost all of the unabridged ones.

    Would I try another narrated by Cornelius Garrett? No. His voices are all wrong for the characters, and I have only listened to this book once as a result, unlike my other Heyer audiobooks, which I enjoy over and over again.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    My favourite character is the Duke of Avon because he is so devilish and clever but is capable of great feeling.


    Who might you have cast as narrator instead of Cornelius Garrett?

    Michael Drew, who narrated Devil's Cub brilliantly (with many of the same characters) or Clifford Norgate, who did a wonderful job narrating Frederica.
    Or Phyllida Nash, who narrates many other Heyer novels wonderfully.


    Could you see These Old Shades being made into a movie or a TV series? Who would the stars be?

    I don't know because Hollywood so often messes up the original stories we love so much.
    If it was done well and stayed true to the source material, I would definitely want to see it.


    Any additional comments?

    Please, please, please, get this audiobook re-recorded with a different narrator.I listen to Devil's Cub (the sequel) a lot, and I wish I could enjoy this one as much, but the narration makes that impossible.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Scout
    12/9/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Dreadful Voice for a main character"
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    The book is great because you have your own character voices in your head.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Avon is my favourite character which makes the poor voice characterisation even worse!


    How could the performance have been better?

    A different narrator or even the same one but with a better voice for Avon!


    Any additional comments?

    Please, please, please re record this with a different voice for Avon.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Mrs
    10/12/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Absolutely AWFUL!"
    If this book wasn’t for you, who do you think might enjoy it more?

    Anyone who has read and loves this book will be appalled by the totally inappropriate voice given to the main character (the Duke of Avon) by the narrator. Other reviews have remarked on this too. I wish I had not wasted my money. Someone else suggested it should be rerecorded by Michael Drew who narrated the sequel brilliantly. I agree. I listened to the first chapter then turned it off and if I could totally delete it and get a refund I would.


    What other book might you compare These Old Shades to, and why?

    Devil's Cub, the sequel. That's a good reading!


    Would you be willing to try another one of Cornelius Garrett’s performances?

    Absolutely not, especially if he is reading Georgette Heyer.


    You didn’t love this book--but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    I DO LOVE this book. I have reread it time after time. But this audio version is DIRE!!


    Any additional comments?

    For goodness sake, get another recording of this done. One in which the narration reflects the story. I can't understand how a narrator or those doing the recording could get it so wrong! Garrett bellows a line of dialogue that ends "said the Duke softly". How can you do that if you are narrating properly?

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Kitty
    6/25/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Lovely story but distracting narration"
    What did you like best about These Old Shades? What did you like least?

    The story is lovely and one of Georgette Heyer's best.it's a lovely bit of romantic escapism. The accuracy of the regency politics, personalities and fashions brings the story to life.


    What didn’t you like about Cornelius Garrett’s performance?

    Most of his narration was lively and engaging, unfortunately the voice he gives the lead character is distracting as he makes him some sleazy and creepy which doesn't fit with the character at all.


    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Village Views
    Norfolk
    1/6/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Good story, disappointing narration"
    What did you like best about These Old Shades? What did you like least?

    Excellent storyline but narrator rather disappointing. Had a wide variety of voices but some not very credible. Duke of Avon came over as too old and too suave.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of These Old Shades?

    The building up of tension when Avon tells his story to denounce St. Vire.


    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    Didn't like his portrayal of Avon and thought Lady Fanny was a pastiche.


    Did These Old Shades inspire you to do anything?

    Go back to read the original in book form.


    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Mrs
    London, United Kingdom
    12/8/12
    Overall
    "Awful narration!"

    I have read this book several times over the years. One of the main characters, the Duke of Avon, is portrayed wonderfully by the author as somewhat sinister, cool and softly spoken. I imagine a voice similar to Alan Rickman in my head! Yet when reading his part, the narrator gives him a loud, almost shouting voice, with a strange accent that almost sounds like a speech impediment! Leon/ie has a sweet French accent, but he gives her French brother a cockney accent, totally incongruous. Such a shame, one of my favourite books of all time, but I had to stop listening after 2 chapters as I couldn't bear it anymore. I shan't be purchasing any more books read by the same narrator.

    7 of 8 people found this review helpful
  • Mrs. REP
    Midlands, UK.
    7/29/12
    Overall
    "Enjoyable, but..."

    This is one of my favourite Georgette Heyer books, slightly let down for me by the narrator - I just HATED how he pronounced "Leonie".

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Crazy
    Manchester, United Kingdom
    2/24/13
    Overall
    "These Old Shades"

    One of my all time favourite Georgette Heyer novels, but the Duke of Avon would not speak like this. He was very softly spoken, sinister even at times. Very disappointed.

    6 of 7 people found this review helpful
  • Alison
    Dudley, West Midlands, United Kingdom
    9/18/09
    Overall
    "these old shades"

    I have loved this book most of my adult life and have read it more times than I can remember. I was so exited when I downloaded this to my MP3 player only to listen to the first five minutes. The voice was so wrong for Justin and I so agree with the other comment dreary no emotion at all. Very dissapointed. Please try again with someone who has feeling and understang for the characters and portrays them as they should be.

    7 of 9 people found this review helpful

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