As war moves ever closer, the sleepy English village of Crowmarsh Priors settles into a new sort of normal: Evacuees from London are billeted in local homes. The nightly German air raids become grimly mundane. Rationing curtails every comfort. Men leave to fight and die. And five women forge a bond of friendship that will change their lives forever in this engrossing novel of loyalty, loss, and love in the shadow of World War II.
With the hardships of war intensifying every day, the women band together to defeat formidable enemies and find remarkable strength within themselves to help one another. It is a war-forged loyalty certain to endure years and distance. When four of the women return for a celebration 50 years later, their mission is not simply to commemorate or remember. They’ve returned to confront a traitor whose actions cost countless lives — and to avenge one of their own at last.
©2011 Heley Bryan (P)2012 Brilliance Audio, Inc.
I don't review every book--only books I feel strongly about--hence the many 4-5 star vs 1-2 star reviews. Just my opinions--hope they help.
This book was something that I was eager to listen to. The story may be a good one but I'll never know with the recorded version because it was so awful. I kept listening hoping it would improve but it only got worse. The accents were just appallingly terrible. Avoid!
Photographer's Moll, Chicken breeder, school administrator and owned by four dogs. Busy life, Happy life!
The story was jumbled - I gave up half way through and the narration was awful. The American accents were reasonable (I think she must be American) but the others - English upper class, German jewish and Cockney were absurd.
Even Shrek could have done a better job. The cockney was the worst rendition of an easily researched dialect that I've ever heard and the others were impossible to believe.
Anger - that I had paid for this
Sadness - that the narration was so lazy
Disappointment - Nothing like I expected
In fact it isn't James. It's Nancy, wife to James, who shares an Amazon account!
Of regional English accents should NOT narrate stories set in England. Even if I hadn't lived in London I think This would *still* be excruciating. The story isn't bad but dear God—the narration!
Proofing, the print, a different narrator, or a narrator with some acting skills
Proof her editors and find a better narrator
Audio books cost too much to be this disappointing.
I'm not sure about Helen Bryan but I know I will never buy anything that Tavia Gilbert narrates.
Terrible accents. I couldn't get through the book because of them. I spent so much time trying to figure out what she was trying to accomplish with the Creole accent that I couldn't follow the story. I gave up at that point.
The first third of the book needs work to engage the listener and make them care about the characters.
Make the characters more likable and/or more believable.
Yes. I believe she did a good job with the task she was given
Yes the last 25% and end of the book were good. It just took too long to get "hooked" into the story.
I was unable to follow the story line. Nothing distinguished one person from another.
I was so put off by the horrible narration that I am not sure if could provide a review of the story.
The setting in pre-war and WW II England. A group of women who may never have known each other otherwise end up in the English countryside to escape the Blitz. Good historical fiction.
Retired CFO, Army wife, Mom of five, Grandma of six, two sons who served in combat, love to read books that reflect my values and faith, love mysteries, historical, military stories, and books that don't waste my time . . . if it doesn't have an ending that was worth the wait, I'm not a happy camper.
Unlikely friends, Evangeline, eighteen years old and fleeing from New Orleans, Tanni, the sixteen year old Jewish girl, from Austria, sensible English Alice, Frances, English daughter of an Admiral,and Elsie, only fifteen from the poor side of town . . . all become war brides . . . and throughout the WWII and the bombing in England take care of one another and their families. The story is very different than I imagined . . . Tanni, the young, innocent Jewish girl marries Bruno, in order to flee Austria and return with him to England where Bruno is a professor at Oxford . . . her young twin sisters are to follow later on the Kindertransport . . . and live with Tanni and Bruno . . . but in war ravaged England, Tanni cannot find them . . . Each of the five women in the story are very different, from varying backgrounds and places . . . and but for the war, it is doubtful they would have been drawn together . . . that iis the wonder of the story, and the wonder of life . . . it sometimes takes hardship for us to recognize the good and beautiful things which exist under our very eyes . . . the war and hardship "grew" this girls up quickly . . . and the mysteries woven into the story are a bonus . . . the women coming back to visit the place where they all came together fifty years later and the solving of the mysteries make for an excellent ending.
I had bought the Kindle edition of War Brides a few months ago and when I started to read it recently I thought it would be fun, if decadent, to also purchase the Audible version. The two together cost under $4, and so worth the "extravagance". I did switch back and forth from listening and reading, not always a smooth transition between my Kindle Paperwhite and iPhone's Audible app. But it was a positive experience. Tavia Gilbert did the various characters' accents wonderfully, which enhanced the reading as I could sort out the many characters more easily. It was a good book, interesting and informative. We all need to learn from history and this novel is based on those who lived in England and Europe during World War II.
I would hesitate to buy both the Kindle and Audible versions of most books, but War Brides was a perfect choice for Whispersinc for Voice. I would also recommend it highly as an Audible read.
"Really enjoyable story"
I thoroughly enjoyed this story and glad I stuck with it. However, I hate to say anything derogatory about narrators because I think they do a fantastic job, but this one - oh dear, she is obbviously American and her own accent was fine. Her english accents were dreadful, so much so, that if the story had not been enjoyable I would have given up. It was a shame really if she had just read it in her own accent all the way through it would probably have been better.
"Why the terrible American narration?"
This story was set outside the USA apart from the first 20 mins or so. But we had to put up with the most dreadful attempts by an American narrator who had to master cockney, posh aristocrat, Sussex burr amongst many other accents. Truly dire. There are so many good British narrators and this narration ruined a really good story.
"A story that turns into a spy story."
Excellent book, had to re listen several times and kept thinking that bit wasn't there last time I listened!!! Not so sure about the reader, she pronounces some words most oddly. A plait of hair is not pronounced like plate but like flat. Very unusual spy story I had never thought of water as a guide to aircraft but now it is so obvious. I really recommend this book.
I loved this book.
It was really hard to put down.
I would think anyone who enjoys stories in wartime would love this.
Definitely. I am sure it will have bits I missed as the story is fairly complex and moves along.
That it is told from the women's perspective.
No. I thought it was excellent.
When Alice realised she had been dumped in favour of Evangeline.
Brilliant listen and engrossing book. Loved it!
"The readers voices"
The reader's performance let this book down. I disliked the silly voices and awful accents. The story was good
The story is interesting, easy to follow however the narrator is not great !!!
"Thoroughly enjoyed this book"
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. The writer built the characters so well and believable. Loved the end.
I've just started listening to this book (my first audio book) in my car, and it's making the daily commute a lot more pleasant. I have to echo many of the other comments about the narration though, it is pretty bad to the point of being funny. They definitely don't talk with a Bristol twang in Sussex, in fact it even sounded a bit Irish at one point today, much to my amusement. The German speaking Tanni occasionally sounds Japanese, and I wish that Americans would steer clear of cockney accents. That said, it hasn't put me off, far from it as I am enjoying the story, and now looking for more audio books to help make my journey less onerous.
"Poor Narration Good Story"
The story was good and that is the only reason I kept going, the narration was comic - simple English words like "fete" pronounced as fet amongst a host of other words poorly pronounced.
The characters were interesting and varied
I think an American trying to impersonate a cockney accent was probably too much for this narrator
It would be nice if the narrators actually researched how to pronounce basic English words, overall the narration was laughable
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