Standard Archer "class-clash". Stellar narration!!
I have listened to all of Jeffrey Archer's work. This is standard class-clash Archer plotline with superb character development. I already feel like I..Show More » grew up with these characters, and can't wait for the next "installment". By the way, the story is told from 1st and 3rd-person viewpoints, and from 7 separate "angles". I bow to Mr. Archer who can weave a complex story like no other (read A Prisoner of Birth and you'll agree). Incomparable two-person narration lends further authenticity to the characters. Since Mr. Archer plans 5 parts, covering 100 years, each part taking 1 year to produce, this series isn't for the faint of heart; however, die-hard Archer fans will settle in and eagerly anticipate the inevitable come-uppance that awaits the already much-hated Mr. Hugo. In the next book, I would expect a few more Archer "soap opera twists" to get us to thoroughly despise him...
Archer carries a narrative strongly and this ripping yarn is no exception. However he presents his characters descriptively -- we see their actions a..Show More »nd hear their words rather than clearly picture them or understand their (repressed) emotions. This is underscored by allowing different protagonists to take up various threads of the story. His women are somewhat cliched nineteenth / early twentieth heroines as they play their roles as martyr, lover, upholder of what is Strong and True. But that works ok -- and, after all, it is is set in the first half of last century. Archer does make us care what happens to his characters and of course he creates compelling twists and turns in the plot. The sequel will be eagerly awaited. The readers were first rate.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book..........in fact when this one came out I went back and reread the first one before starting the second..........and wa..Show More »s glad I did. The first one was just as enjoyable the second time around.
Do not understand all of the negative reviews from people who object to being left hanging at the end. The author stated from the start that this work was a series that would be produced over a period of years so if you don't like that format then don't buy the first one!!!
The reader was excellent...........there were just a few voices that grated on me (Alistair!) but for the most part they were delightful.
Highly recommend these books to anyone who likes this genre.
This is the second installment in the Clifton Chronicles. As the first one, Only Time Will Tell, it is a true page-turner – if you can say that about ..Show More »an audiobook? It’s a fast-paced read, the plot is full of twists and turns, and ends with a massive cliff hanger, and the characters are neatly divided into good guys and bad guys. And that can be very nice. It was a bit unrealistic from time to time – I won’t say how as it will reveal too much. But if you’re just looking for some good entertainment without making an effort yourself, this is the book for you.
I enjoyed the previous two books and was disappointed with this third installment. Unlike some of the other reviewers, however, my disappointment was ..Show More »not with the abrupt ending. It was with the novel itself. The story 'reads' like a plot outline -- with absolutely no character development whatsoever even by Jeffrey Archer's standards. So Character A, for example, will go from being a difficult child to a model adolescent with absolutely no explanation as to what brought the change about. Character B, besotted with his wife and willing to forsake all else at her request, is able to move on from his infatuation at the drop of a dime. Of course, the infatuation seems absurd from the start since Character C, the wife, is a cartoonish Cruella Deville without a single redeeming quality -- and the fact that Character B fell madly in love with her seems, well, out of character. In this novel, the characters are all lowercase and act however they have to at that moment in order to move The Plot along. And, believe me, The Plot moves...at dizzying speed and in all kinds of preposterous directions. It's almost like if Archer is thinking of what will happen next as he types! In fact, I am not even sure what "the Best Kept Secret" was meant to be since the story line regarding what I THOUGHT was "the secret" does not get resolved. In fact, it is not even mentioned in the last 50 or more pages of The Plot. (Could it be that the audible production did leave a section out?) If you are a Jeffrey Archer fan, by all means, download it. It's not deep, but it is kind-of entertaining. I am sure I will buy the next one.
I used to LOVE Jeffrey Archer's books. Sure, not literature, but FUN, FUN, FUN. Surprising twists that MADE SENSE. Interesting characters. Could not w..Show More »ait for his next novel...
That author is simply gone. Replaced by one who must be writing as fast as he can to make a quick million bucks. (I think I am done contributing to this particular fund.)
The previous one in this series was mediocre. This one is even worse. Absolutely meaningless plot twists (not just hard-to-believe...MEANINGLESS. The story doesn't go anywhere.) The reviewer who said, "Where is this series going?" is totally right.
There is also an annoying "love fest" with the upper class (save a handful of stereotypical Cruella Deville female characters that even the "upper class" knows to disdain). The narrator MIGHT be contributing to make their conversations DEADLY boring with his nasal inflections, but I don't think so--I think it is just ghaaastly writing.
I'm so conflicted on Mightier Than the Sword. After loving the first two novels in the Clifton Chronicles I felt there was a major drop off in books t..Show More »hree and four. To keep things as simple as possible I didn't understand why this was such a long series. Harry and Emma have always been the draw for me into these novels and as the cast expanded and contracted I just began to lose interest. However since I'm already four books invested I felt like I had to continue my trek into this series.
The good news is, Mightier Than the Sword is a much better novel then books three and four and yet it still isn't anywhere near the drama of the first two. The big issue I have had with this book and the last two are the conflicts. They feel forced. Characters in The Clifton Chronicles are far either good or evil. There's no room for nuance. No grey areas. You have characters you're told to like and others that are the epitome of evil. This makes the story feel a little too clean.
I've also gotten to the point where I wonder if Harry and Emma are just too good for their own good? There's a scene where Harry follows his conscious to help another and I kept wondering what person would ever do this? And yet for all of its faults, and there are many, I still really enjoyed Mightier Than the Sword. The pacing was much better in this one then the previous two. More happens and what happens seems at least slightly more plausible then the last two books.
I will continue down the windy road that is The Clifton Chronicles. Although I think reading all this Jeffrey Archer makes me excited for what he writes after this series as its starting to get long in the tooth.