©1951 Georgette Heyer; (P)2008 BBC Audiobooks Ltd
I buy Heyer's comedies whenever Audible adds them. I hope they soon add more of her mature, best books: Frederica, The Grand Sophy, Sylvester, The Unknown Ajax, Cotillion, False Colours . . .).
That said, try Devil's Cub (good-humored dashing romance), Sprig Muslin (light-hearted comedy), or A Civil Contract (surprising twists that reverse stereotypes and expectations) before this one. Frankly, they're better books, and Michael Drew, Sian Phillips, and Phyllida Nash each give far better readings Cornelius Garrett does with The Quiet Gentleman.
Garrett's reading here is uninspired, and his shrilly over-the-top characterization of the stepmother makes the recording hard to listen to. Heyer's world is fun despite these flaws; the other recordings are just much better places to start.
I've loved Georgette Heyer's books since I first ran into them in London in the mid-60s. I still love them, and reread the ones I bought in the 60s and 70s. Some of those copies are getting quite worn! Ms Heyer's books are not demanding, not stirring, nor prickly for the conscience. They are simply good fun.
The Quiet Gentleman is one of my favorites, maybe because the heroine isn't beautiful, ultra-talented, or otherwise daunting. Mostly, it's just a book with characters I'd love to count as friends.
My review has 4 stars rather than 5 because I found the "voices" not what I expected. I suppose I "know" the voices already and no reader would quite have the right tone. I mean no disparagement - the book was very well read - I just don't think the narrator quite caught the characters.
Another great Heyer romance, though unusual because the main character is male, unlike most of her works. I really enjoy Heyer's talent for creating characters who are intelligent, dryly humorous, and kind to everyone, whether servants or peers (even to those selfish individuals who don't really deserve it). I also especially like it when a female character who isn't traditionally beautiful or a giddy girl just out of the schoolroom is able to find happiness with a man who values her above the frippery around him. Therefore, this novel was exactly to my taste. Some of the above qualities reminded me of SPRIG MUSLIN and A CIVIL CONTRACT, so if you liked those books, then you will probably enjoy those of this one, too.
I felt that the narrator did a wonderful job, despite what some other reviewers have written. Each character sounded distinct from the others, and the proper inflections for what Heyer wrote were correctly performed (meaning, that I didn't notice Garrett ever saying a passage without irony when it was obviously meant to be ironic, for example). I didn't find any female voices to be grating myself; if, for example, the stepmother seemed to some listeners to be voiced unpleasantly, that seemed fitting because she was a very selfish and unlikeable character. I think that all of the voices fit their characters, personally. His voice for the main character reminded me a little of the one he used for the Duke in THESE OLD SHADES, but I had no problem with that because I enjoyed both characters and could see some similarities in common.
One thing that surprised me was that I figured out a twist in the plot very early on, and normally, I'm not someone who does so, for the most part. However, this is the ninth Heyer novel that I've listened to, so maybe I just have figured out some of how her mind worked by now.
I hope that Audible offers more and more Heyer titles, since there are many not yet available on audio.
This reader, Cornelius Garrett did not resonate with me. The story however is one of my favorite books by Georgette Heyer.
Obsessive reader, 6-10 books a week, chosen from Member reviews. Fact & fiction, subjects from the Tudors to Tookie, Harlem to Hiroshima, Huey Long to Huey Newton. In-depth fair reviews - from front to BLACK!!!
This is the last of 23 Georgette Heyer books that I've bought here in less than 90 days. I've never read a romance novel in over 55 years as an avid reader but got hooked after falling upon "Frederica" when I couldn't find any available "real" history books to listen to. Impressed by Heyer's mastery of all things from the Regency period, along with detailed characters, I soon got over my aversion to "chick-lit". The narrator here is excellent, adding much to the story with his varied character voices. What makes this a stand-out is that it's more of a mystery story than the regular romance fare, with great suspense and plot twists. (Two of my other favorites are "Behold, Here's Poison" and "The Unfinished Clue", both mysteries. My least fave is "The Nonesuch"). Nobody can create a period gentleman's attention to his clothing like Georgette Heyer! As with all of her books, Heyer's ending here is predictable but only as it relates to who's going to fall in love. I just hate that, for me, it is the last book currently offered on here. I look forward to other titles soon. While waiting, I'll save some money - because, if there were more, I'd be buying them!
This book is slow to develop, but steadily picks up steam. A stellar performance by Garrett.
This is one of my favorite Georgette Heyer books so far! The plot thickens with twists and turns, I was glued to my ipod until I finished it, and I love how she surprises me at the end! Sprig Muslin was great too, and I can't wait for more!
When I was a teen I read many of Georgette Heyer's Regency romances and fell in love with her feisty female characters. As an adult I rediscovered Heyer and came to appreciate the range of her characters, the precision of her timing, and her deft hand with dialog. Now I am rediscovering Heyer in audio format and I have been delighted to find several of her books I hadn't yet read. The Quiet Gentleman is one I had not previously read.
I was a bit surprised the book was read by a man, since I thought of her books as primarily appealing to women, but once I got into the story I recognized how appropriate the choice was to have a male reader. Cornelius Garrett did a good job of bringing the characters off the printed page, easily distinguishing each character with a unique accent and manner of speaking, and providing the women with a creditable voice. I often marvel at various readers' abilities to speak for someone of the opposite sex without sounding silly. Heyer's books are built on dialog, so a good reader is essential.
The Quiet Gentleman is one of Heyer's more Austen-like books - its pacing provides a gradual unfolding of the characters as they are revealed through their daily interactions. But several of the characters and the situations provide the delightful satire of manners that I've come to expect in a Georgette Heyer book.
I thoroughly enjoyed this first reintroduction to Georgette Heyer's books and am looking forward to starting the next on my list.
I was extremely disappointed in the narration of this book. The narrator was so bad I couldn't even make it through the first 4 chapters. His tone was abrasive, especially for the female characters. It was truly a disappointment.
hopeless romantic and avowed anglophile
I have always delighted in reading Georgette Heyer's books, often again and again and have recently been enjoying them on audio so that I can busy my hands with knitting projects while being entertained, but Mr. Garrett's voice, especially when translating the female characters is extremely harsh to listen to. He is more often so shrill and annoying that it is hard to concentrate on the story.
Report Inappropriate Content