When too many jumps back to 1940 leave 21st century Oxford history student Ned Henry exhausted, a relaxing trip to Victorian England seems the perfect solution. But complexities like recalcitrant rowboats, missing cats, and love at first sight make Ned's holiday anything but restful - to say nothing of the way hideous pieces of Victorian art can jeopardize the entire course of history.
Delightfully aided by the perfect comedic timing of narrator Steven Crossley, To Say Nothing of the Dog shows once again why Connie Willis is one of the most talented writers working today.
©1998 Connie Willis; (P)2000 Recorded Books
"Willis effortlessly juggles comedy of manners, chaos theory and a wide range of literary allusions [with a] near flawlessness of plot, character and prose." (Publishers Weekly)
A delightful story, likable, well-developed characters, wonderful humor, and a clever plot that, if you don't pay attention, you'll miss because you're laughing too hard. Excellent narration.
One of the things I love about Audible is the chance to "read" books I'm sure I'd never even consider. This book is based upon an old book called Three Men and Boat. (I loved that and I had never heard of it until I listened to it from Audible.)
This book is easygoing, lighthearted but intelligent. I sure it possible to tear the plot apart but that isn't really the point. Although it seems like it a long book, it goes really fast.
And you may wonder what a bird-stump is... listen to the book.
I happen to be an admiring anglophile, and a great lover of all things Victorian (except perhaps, the furniture!). While this story has all the excitement of a day in punt, it also has all the charm. The reader in particular is superb, and adds so much to the story that I simply wouldn't have enjoyed it as much if I'd merely read it myself. I dare you to listen to this 'dear-um dear-um' story and not smile.
I really enjoyed this book. It has a light hearted style and the characters are very well written.
It is a long book but the plot's twists and turns keep it interesting all the way and I think it portrays the atmosphere of the Victorian setting very well. There are some interesting ideas about time travel, chaos theory and all sorts of things included.
The narrator is great, he gets the tone just right and paces it perfectly.
This is one of my favorite fiction/humor books. This production of it is very well-read and humorous. My kids listened along with me and asked me every evening to listen more.
This is the second title that I've read by this author, and although she has again provided an interesting tale with amusing literary references in this extended time travel tale, she again needs a good strong editor to prune down the unnecessarily extended and repetitive elements in the storyline.
Yes, I get that this is a novel about time travel, which means going back again [and again] in time to fix mistakes, but on the fourth or fifth time around with the same tone, characters and situations I found it wearisome indeed.
The characters are two dimensional, the humour at times obvious and heavy handed. It's sort of a groundhog day of a book, which is a shame, because with a paring down and a concomitant increase in pace this story would have some charm.
No, I think I've got it now.
The performance was fine.
My reaction to this story was along the lines of 'for god's sake, get on with it'.
Tell us about yourself!
What a fun time. This is the kind of book that probably is best experienced through narration, and Crossley does an amazing job of giving life to everyone from stodgy old Victorian matrons to their petulant daughters. There were moments when I checked out and didnt give it quite my full attention, but I was able to slide right back into the plot without missing a beat or feeling guilty that I should go back and relisten. In short its a good time with a good plot and excellent narration that doesnt require you to catch its every word.
This is an odd book.
I'm still not sure what I think about it.
The narrator was fine, the story progressed.
I think I came in somewhere in the middle of a series, I had trouble following the action for the first 30min-hour, then I sort of settled into it.
Perhaps this would be more exciting for someone with more interest in late 19th century England, English writers and colleges at the time?
I was happiest near the end when time travel was happening and expectations were being surprised and loose ends were finally being tied up.
This book was just fun to listen to. It's full of humor and Victorian history with a little science fiction thrown in. The reader is great. You forget that it's one person doing all the voices.
"My first Connie Willis..."
...but certainly not my last. I thoroughly enjoyed the combination of leisurely trips down the river (Jerome K Jerome style), travelling through time, and the historical depictions of various eras, not to mention the city where my father was born. The characters were great fun and I hope to meet them again in her other time-travelling historical romps. I found the narrator easy to listen to and I hope to hear more audiobooks read by him.
"Baffling in places"
The story could have been improved by removing the historical lectures which almost made me listen at double speed.However it was a good story with a twist and some romance. There was gentle humour throughout and references to Three Men in a Boat which I enjoyed.
I was baffled by some of the technical stuff - possibly I just needed to concentrate a bit harder.
I really liked the narrator and found his characters clearly defined and realistic. Princess Arjamon's voice was especially good.
"To Say Nothing of the Dog"
Utterly banal. The humour is largely based around miscommunications (i.e. people shouting unclearly). This would barely work on televsion and cetainly does not work in this format.
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