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A Damsel in Distress

Narrated by: Frederick Davidson
Length: 7 hrs and 43 mins
Categories: Fiction, Humor
4 out of 5 stars (227 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Strange things are happening at Belpher Castle. For starters, the Earl's sister is intent on pairing off her stepson, Reggie, and niece, Lady Patricia (known as Maud). Maud, however, is in hot pursuit of Geoffrey Raymond, and she is also being pursued by the unacceptable composer, George Bevan.

"Reggie was a troubled spirit these days. He was in love, and he had developed a bad slice with his mid-iron. He was practically a soul in torment."

Public Domain (P)1993 Blackstone Audiobooks

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4 out of 5 stars
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Performance

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    16
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    8
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Story

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

Very Entertaining!

This was my first by the author. I loved it! Very english, and very entertaining. Not so much a laugh outloud comedy, but lots of ironic humor. And attention-holding to the end! I'd definitely recommend it.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Megan
  • Salinas, CA, United States
  • 08-04-05

Driving trouble

Reggie's trouble on the driving range was comparable to mine in my car,as I had to pull over due to hysterical laughter. This classic bedroom farce kept me in stitches.
The British Accent took a bit of getting used to, but once acclimated it was great. I will be listening to this one again and again.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Susan C.
  • Madison, WI United States
  • 03-18-04

Splendid all around

I've read and loved P.G. for years, but never more than in this delicious reading. Bravo!

10 of 11 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

The pursuit of Maude

This book was written in 1919. English life has changed since then but the comedy of courtship would make a great movie today. The narration was great except for one area that was jumpy.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

The Master at Work...Again

Evelyn Waugh said Wodehouse created a world for us to delight in, and he was about right. Get enough of Sir Pelham's stories under your belt and they have a cumulative effect, not unlike dry martinis, of making you think life isn't so bad after all. Yes, he can make you laugh. But even more importantly, he can make you smile.

Take Damsel in Distress. Aristocratic English girl falls for penniless American stranger. Defying her family, she slips off to London to meet him. Unexpectedly encountering her older brother in the street, girl ducks into a cab. At the moment this cab belongs to an American who falls in love with her on the spot...and who the family now believe, based on the older brother's outraged report, is the penniless young American. But I digress. To go any further would ruin the plot, and in Wodehouse plots--twisting, turning, surprising and always comic--are of the essence.

Beyond crazy plots and characters, Wodehouse is fun to listen to because he's such a good writer. It's pleasurable to follow the shape of his sentences, especially with a superb reader like Frederick Davidson who gets every drop of irony, sarcasm or comedy out of just about every line.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Mazen
  • North Brunswick, NJ, USA
  • 04-22-05

Fun and imaginative

This is my first book by P. G. Wodehouse and I'm looking forward to another. The story was interesting and the author has some insighteful comments every now and then. My only cristicism is that the story was sometimes predictable, but in a comedy this is not much of a problem. Quite enjoyable.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

A Sweep Stikes? (Great Narration!)

There are Wodehouse people and then all the others. Not just the characters in his books, but people who get Wodehouse and people who don't. My Audible library has almost every Wodehouse title, some simply read aloud, but a few brought to life by nimble talents who *get* Wodehouse. Frederick Davidson, who ably narrates Tolstoy, Hugo, Dickens, and Verne in my Audible library, does a terrific comic turn. From the repressed Lord Marshmoreton and his insufferable priggish son Percy to the obsequious/domineering Kegs the butler and young blighted Albert the pageboy, Davidson shines. His American accents are a bit flat for their purported regions of origin, but they are there as contrast to the upstairs/downstairs English country cast. I've listened to it many times and it never fails to amuse and fill a few hours with delightful distraction. #Clever #BritishHumor #HumanNature #Tagsgiving #Sweepstakes

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Love the story

The story is great, I liked the narrator, but in the second half the recording got very choppy and hard to listen to. I backed up and it was rough in the same places, leading me to believe it's the copy and not my headphones or device.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Early Wodehouse

This reads like an early Blandings Castle tale in many ways. Great fun. With Wodehouse, it isn't so much the tale as the TELLING of the tale. His phrasing, his tone are the key, and that makes him perfect for audio books.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Funny voices, misread lines

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

No. The narrator mis-read too many sentences and mis-pronounced too many words.

What other book might you compare A Damsel in Distress to and why?

This novel seems to be a precursor to the Blandings Castle series by the same author.

How could the performance have been better?

I would have preferred that the narrator keep the funny voices to the dialog. Reading the entire book with a fake upper-class accent is not only unnecessary it is intensely irritating. It sounds like a bad Tim Curry impersonation.

Apart from which, the narrator seems incapable of reading more than a few words ahead. Given the unpredictable nature of Wodehouse's long sentences, this failing produces many inappropriate pauses and meaningless fragmentary phrases. I don't know what to suggest to remedy this - learn to read, perhaps?

Did A Damsel in Distress inspire you to do anything?

Throw a boot at the stereo.

Any additional comments?

Grrrr!