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A Dark-Adapted Eye  By  cover art

A Dark-Adapted Eye

By: Barbara Vine
Narrated by: Harriet Walter
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Publisher's summary

Like most families, they had their secrets...

...and they hid them under a genteelly respectable veneer. No onlooker would guess that prim Vera Hillyard and her beautiful, adored younger sister, Eden, were locked in a dark and bitter combat over one of those secrets. England in the '50s was not kind to women who erred, so they had to use every means necessary to keep the truth hidden behind closed doors - even murder.

©1986 Kingsmarkham Enterprises Ltd (P)2014 Audible, Inc.

What listeners say about A Dark-Adapted Eye

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Even better in audio form

This has long been one of my favorite books. I've read it many times and recommended it to many other people. But it has been a few years since I last read it, and the narration, which I listened to while driving to and from NYC is wonderfully excellent.

This book requires a lot of thought, and is a perfect match for the audio format. Having the extra time to really appreciate the subtleties, mysteries, and deep character development is the strength of this format. You'd miss much of this when only reading. The narrator is top knotch, nailing the nuances and exploring the maturation of the main character over time. I can't recommend this one enough.

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22 people found this helpful

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

Well-written, absorbing psychological mystery

I bought this on the basis of audible reviews and was not disappointed. This is not an edge-of-your-seat mystery. It unfolds slowly and moves deeper and deeper into the characters, their histories and their motivations. It is beautifully narrated by Harriet Walter. If you're looking for something to lose yourself in and spend some time with, I recommend it.

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9 people found this helpful

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

Family secrets and lies

And shocking revelations! Really, what more could you want? This book was fantastic, the story twisty and gripping, and the narration lively. Absolutely recommended!

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4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Performance Outshines the Story

Story is drawn out and the mystery or twist is easy to surmise. Overly detailed at times, especially when describing clothes or interior design elements. If Jane Austen had written a politely "shocking" novel, it would be this one.

However, it is well read and performed. The performance was the only thing that kept me listening.

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4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • J
  • 07-07-15

Great story, fabulous narration!

I wasn't sure about this story for the first couple of chapters but any book narrated by Harriet Walter's is worth a listen so I carried on and I'm so glad I did. This mystery is so cleverly written and the characters are brought to life so perfectly by the narrator. This is my first Barbara Vine novel but it certainly won't be my last.

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3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Psychological obervations

of repressed women, different generations. Every family has a secret (if not several) that is not completely known by all members within the family. I liked this story because it reads very true to life, in that things are not at all what they appear to be--that sometimes it's easier to fool someone you love than a stranger.

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3 people found this helpful

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

I finished it

I enjoyed it and the narrator was great.
I was surprised that the plot did not go in the direction I had anticipated. It seemed to give so many a hints of crimes to be uncovered that the ending was a bit of a let down for me.

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2 people found this helpful

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

Top drawer psychological novel

One of my favorite novels of all time. The writing is superb and the chosen narrator is as well. Chills and shivers are no better delivered by situations such as those that can be imagined as real, that are in a sense no more than everyday tragedies. The author also imparts a wonderful sense of time and place. Just read it!

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2 people found this helpful

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

A Few

A few mispronounced words in the performance, but otherwise a nice job at giving each character a voice that fit. The story had a lot of interesting characters, but did very little with them in either growth, or action. I like the language very much.

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2 people found this helpful

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

fascinating family intrigue

This is more an interesting and complicated look at the psychological workings of a family divided than it is a mystery.......though there are and remain several mysterious parts to the whole. It takes a while to get into the story, but as it continually unrolls it is more and more intriguing, drawing the listener deeper and deeper into the family machinations. The continuing family revelations experienced by the protagonist make sense of the title....A "Dark Adapted Eye" can see things that were formerly hidden in the darkness.

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2 people found this helpful