In the India of 1942, two rapes take place simultaneously - that of an English girl in Mayapore, and that of India by the British. In each, physical violence, racial animosity, the coercion of the weak by the strong all play their part, but playing a part too are love, affection, loyalty, and recognition that the last division of all to be overcome is the colour of the skin. The whole spectrum of Anglo-Indian relations is vividly evoked in a brilliant assessment of emotions, personal clashes and historical reasons that eventually prised India - the jewel in the Imperial Crown - from its setting.
©1966 N.E. Avery Scott (P)2014 Audible, Inc.
This is an engrossing story and the narrator gives a fantasic performance, with a different voice for each character. I wish he did the rest of the series but this seems to be the only volume available with him. Well worth listening to.
If you have ever wanted to read the Raj Quartet, The Jewel in the Crown narrated by Sam Dastor couldn't be better. His rendition of the characters' voices as well as their accents is so good that much of the time I forgot that this was the same narrator doing all the different voices. Now that I have listened to the first book in the Quartet, I plan to read the other three. My preference would have been to listen to the rest of the quartet as audiobooks, but unfortunately the samples of Richard Brown reading have convinced me that I would not like his narration at all. Oh, to have the rest of the Quartet read by Sam Dastor! Audible, are you listening?
I would listen to this again as it seems so rich in human experience that I expect to find more in it every time I read it.
It's often compared to A Passage To India, but Paul Scott's knowledge and interest in both India and the Raj clearly dwarfs Forster's. Forster's book is largely satire (and written long before the tragedies Scott describes), whereas Scott's much longer work feels populated with real people in serious situations.
It made me laugh and cry, in equal measure.
Sam Dastor was born to narrate this book -- his astonishing mastery of a wide range of British and Indian accents, as well as characters, is unparallelled in my experience. Please somebody persuade him to perform the last three books in the series. I cannot imagine anyone else ever coming up to his standard.
Yes, a wonderful experience.
Kumar interviewed in prison while Lady Manners watched.
See above memorable moment
Have always loved these books. A wonderful read.
"One of the best readings I have found on Audible"
This is a fantastic reading of a fantastic book. As those who have read the book will know, it is made up of various accounts and the narrator is able to portray each of them perfectly.
I haven't quite finished listening to it yet, but both the book and the narrator draw you in slowly so that you become gradually more and more invested in the story and eager to know the truth.
This book is marvellously narrated, and I wish that it could go on forever. I do hope that recordings of the rest of the Raj Quartet are planned.
"Good start - where's the rest of the Raj Quartet?"
It sets the scene well, beautifully written.
Parade's End in another era, another place.
What happened next?
I do hope you will obtain the rest of the quartet. It used to be available in cassettes.
"A Masterly Reading"
Probably the definitive account of Anglo-Indian relations during the latter days of the Raj.
I have watched, and very much enjoyed, the TV series but, as always, there is so much more to be had from the book. Having said that, it is sometimes rather wordy and there might be a tendency to skip if reading the print version but, as others have noted, Sam Dastor’s reading is masterly and makes this audiobook riveting from beginning to end. Not only is every character utterly individual but he also manages that most difficult (for a man) of tasks: presenting female characters convincingly.
I enjoyed this so much. It is beautifully and sensitively read and had me transfixed for the full 21 or so hours. It is a wonderful story, which I knew well from the TV series, and it was fascinating to listen to the book where the details of the story are fleshed out. I am so disappointed that the other three books in the quartet are not available on audio. I do hope they will be soon and that they will be read by the same superb narrator - Sam Dastor.
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