A moving love story displaying all of Austen's signature wit and ironic narrative style....
One of Jane Austen's most popular novels. Arrogant, self-willed, and egotistical, Emma is her most unusual heroine....
When Catherine Morland, a country clergyman's daughter, is invited to spend a season in Bath with the fashionable high society, little does she imagine the delights and perils that await her....
Mrs. Dashwood is forced by an avaricious daughter-in-law to leave the family home in Sussex....
One of Jane Austen’s most beloved works, Pride and Prejudice, is vividly brought to life by Academy Award nominee Rosamund Pike (Gone Girl)....
Set in English society before the 1832 Reform Bill, Wives and Daughters centers on the story of youthful Molly Gibson, brought up from childhood by her father....
This novel provides a highly charged examination of human suffering and human sacrifice, private experience and public history, during the French Revolution....
This is Jane Austen's lighthearted lesson in what you get for reading too many gothic novels....
Charlotte Brontë's Gothic classic is an early exploration of women's independence in the mid-19th century and the pervasive societal challenges women had to endure....
Set during the time of the Napoleonic Wars, this classic gives a satirical picture of a worldly society. The novel revolves around the exploits of Becky Sharp....
"The Call of the Wild" is a novel by Jack London published in 1903. The story is set in the Yukon during the 1890s Klondike Gold Rush...
The story begins with an investigation into some strange reports of an "opera ghost", legendary for making the great Paris opera performers ill-at-ease when they sit alone in their dressing rooms....
A coming-of-age tale for the young and naïve 17-year-old Catherine Morland, Northanger Abbey takes a decidedly comical look at themes of class, family, love and literature....
This historical romance, perhaps the greatest cloak-and-sword story ever, relates the adventures of four fictional swashbuckling heroes who served the French kings Louis XIII and Louis XIV....
Set in the 12th century, Ivanhoe is the story of a young man who joins up with Richard the Lion Hearted during a dark time where England is split between the Normans and the Saxons....
Heidi is sent to live with her embittered grandfather high in the Swiss Alps. Heidi's innocent joy of life and genuine concern and love for all living things become the old man's salvation....
Famous, all-encompassing, passionate, but ultimately doomed love between Catherine Earnshaw and Heathcliff, and how this unresolved passion eventually destroys them and the people around them....
At the tender age of 10, Fanny Price is 'adopted' by her rich relations and is removed from the poverty of her home in Portsmouth to the opulence of Mansfield Park. The transplantation is not a happy one. Dependent, helpless, neglected and forgotten, Fanny struggles to come to terms with her new life until, tested almost to the limits of endurance, she assumes her rightful role....
I had read this book before but many years ago and like so many others knew Jane Austen from Pride and Prejudice and more from the tv series than reading the book. However, Jane is at her most observational in this book - characters are so real that they are recognisable from people we know today and she is also at her most cynical - the wit is brilliant. Its a fantastic book and Juliet Stevenson is masterly in her narration. If I could have given it six stars I would have done!
22 of 23 people found this review helpful
From the many reviews I've read, I know this novel isn't that popular among Jane Austen fans, most finding the heroine Fanny Price to be too much of a wallflower for a lead character. To me it seemed like she was on the contrary a young woman of conviction with a strong moral fiber, who seemed to have more depth than the leading young women in the other two novels I've read by Jane Austen (S&S and P&P), which I found too frothy for my liking. The secondary characters were very entertaining; indeed, their presence was essential in moving the story forward and providing plenty of spice and drama. Excellent performance by Juliet Stevenson, who is one of my favourite narrators.
21 of 23 people found this review helpful
If you like Jane Austen you can't do better than Juliet Stevenson. She manages all of the characters' voices, including the men' and the narrator's, providing a dramatic yet sensitive reading catching what we might imagine was Austen's own voice. Each time I listen to one of the books I hear a new line or thread in the narration that I didn't catch before. Love them all.
8 of 9 people found this review helpful
Well, it's a classic. I love this type of story so it appeals to me right up front. This narrator is the best at this type of story. Just only negative is it's so long and somewhats meanders so much that I almost quit out of boredom but then it would pick up again. Descriptions are wonderful - I like listening to it.
10 of 12 people found this review helpful
An exceptional narration and abridgement of a classic. But I bought it because of the narrator Juliette Stevenson.....superb.
8 of 10 people found this review helpful
I actually really enjoyed this book. There are a number of reviews where people harp on the frailty of Fanny Price and her timid nature. While, she is no Elizabeth Bennett... I do think there is something to be said about the true soul of Miss Price. She lives in a world where she has been told again & again that her station was beneath those around her. Wouldn't being sent away from parents and siblings to a world of fashion and elegance where people make sure you know that you are inferior and should be grateful of EVERYTHING could make one want to blend into the background? I think that Henry Crawford starting his attentions just to relieve boredom by making her fall in love with him and then falling in love with her because of her nature and how different it is to those around her. I'm ashamed to say that I watched the 1999 movie before reading the book. I like the relationship with her brother; who is not in the movie at all. But, I prefer that Edmund seems to love Fanny all along in the movie rather then the original story of disappointment in Mary showing him the benefit of Fanny. Still, it's worth the credit.
7 of 9 people found this review helpful
A well spoken narrator reads this book with the upmost perfection. "A timless classic"
9 of 13 people found this review helpful
Juliet Stevenson's narration is superb in all the audiobooks I've listened to, but even her skill cannot lift Mansfield Park to the heights of Pride and Prejudice. Fanny Price is a drip! Edmund is a doofus! The story is a treadmill of reiteration! But if you feel compelled to read Mansfield Park anyway, this edition is the best I've heard. For those not familiar with Jane Austen's works I recommend Northanger Abbey. It's goofy on purpose.
6 of 9 people found this review helpful
I loved the feeling that the narrator created when reading this classic. It transports you to a different era.
This was a surprisingly fun and addictive book, and after about the first 1/3 of the story, once Fanny had grown past her childhood miseries, I ended up looking forward to every opportunity to listen. I say "surprising" because when I read this book years ago during my English-major days, I thought I quite disliked it. Fanny is the Austen heroine most generally looked down upon by readers (even Austen fans) due to her low self-confidence, her physical weakness, and her general (as modern readers often judge it) insipidity. The professor of our Austen seminar described the novel as Austen's most experimental, a kind of Rorschach test in which Fanny serves as a "blank center" around which all other characters swirl, and upon whom they each project their own ideas of what Fanny is, or what she ought to be.
This listen, I came up with a new theory. I think this is Austen's Cinderella story, a cynical and biting portrayal of a plausible (for its time) rags-to-riches tale. And I think Austen fleshes out this story, and makes it so much more than a fairy tale, by incorporating a deep exploration of the theme of the ultimate loneliness of the individual--the way in which no one human being ever fully knows (or, often, even understands the first thing about) another person's mind, urges, motivations, true thoughts or feelings.
For all of you Harry Potter fans out there, an unexpected benefit to reading/listening to this book is that you will finally come to understand why nasty, nosey and insinuating Hogwarts caretaker Filch named his borderline-evil cat "Mrs. Norris."
Juliet Stevenson's more than sublime reading makes this an A+ listen.
3 of 7 people found this review helpful
Brilliant a joy to listen too, the characters are portraied so well, I could listen to it over and over again
4 of 4 people found this review helpful
I was what you might call a reluctant Janeite. I suspect there are a lot of us out there, especially among us men. From being force-fed ‘Emma’ in sixth-form I was in denial - I recognised the writer’s quality without properly seeing that her stories are more than just tales of closed societies of young idle people wasting their time before being married off. I’ve begun to see to what extent I was wrong, and Mansfield Park has helped greatly with that process.
Even some quite ardent lovers of Jane Austen have trouble with Mansfield Park, or, more particularly, they have trouble with Fanny Price. She’s not “feisty”; she lacks heroic quality; she’s weak. Broadly, she commits the sin of not being Elizabeth Bennett. These criticisms are true as far as they go, but here’s the thing: the book tells us exactly why and how she’s all this, how she copes with and ultimately overcomes her troubled upbringing and ends the book as a fully-rounded & admirable person.
Here’s a girl, less than healthy, certainly neglected and conceivably abused at home, taken as an act of charity from her parents and placed in a high-class environment already packed with well-to-do, self-assured older children and adults who, with one exception, treat her with anything raging from condescension to disdain to simple ignoring, so that she almost always feels she is only at Mansfield Park on sufferance. Should she ever show “ingratitude” or independence of spirit, there is Mrs Norris to tell her how lucky she is to be among such superior society at all. If at any time she receives what seems to be preferential treatment there is always someone to remind her of her lowly status. The only adult who appreciates her is too idle and self-absorbed to be any help, and the only one of the children who supports her becomes neglectful when he falls in love. Is it any wonder that Fanny is less than self-confident?
The story of the book for me is how she acquires her inner strength: as others fail and show their feet of clay she consistently increases in power without ever losing that essential eighteenth and nineteenth century attribute, modesty. And this rise comes organically and feels true, and through this I cannot be one of the anti-Fanny crowd.
For me any weakness in the book comes late. The inevitable marriage feels contrived and even possibly objectionable: maybe another outcome would have been too difficult to pull off without upsetting conservative readers, but this somewhat bolted-on happy ending, while it doesn’t spoil a marvellous book, feels unwanted.
This is a copy of my Goodreads review. I only need to add here that it is read superbly. Oh and that Edmund is what PG Wodehouse would call "a pill"!
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
Any additional comments?
This was my first audiobook after being introduced to audible, and I was not disappointed. Juliet Stevenson reads wonderfully well, and clearly distinguishes between characters. It really brought the book to life. This is not my favourite Austen, as I find the protagonist Fanny Price, a little annoying, but the usual wit and genius shines through nonetheless.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?
I would recommend this very highly. Jane Austen's characterisation and dialogue are, as always, brilliant, and seem to be particularly effective when read aloud.Since reading circles were a common social activity in J.A.'s time, perhaps she intended this. Juliet Stevenson does full justice to the text. She uses different voices for different characters, which bring out their character beautifully, yet sound quite natural. I am pleasantly surprised, because this is one of the cheapest versions of Mansfield Park, and yet it must be one of the best (I haven't tried the others, but other people's reviews seem to indicate some are not as good).
What other book might you compare Mansfield Park to, and why?
Just as good as Jane Austen's other novels.
Which character – as performed by Juliet Stevenson – was your favourite?
Lady Bertram -I can just picture her laid out on the chaise longue,so outrageously self-absorbed and indolent that she becomes comic..
Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?
Yes, but I rationed myself, so I would have it to look forward to.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Ah, the wit and wonder of Jane Austen is second to none - many an acerbic observation made me gasp or laugh out loud throughout this, one of my favourite of her books. I think Fanny Price is such a gentle natured girl that she may be in danger of getting overlooked as one of Austen's main characters most deserving of attention. She is full of both sense and sensitivity and is rather lovely to spend time with! The other characters are flawed and very human indeed, with foibles a plenty and scandals abounding. Plenty of opportunity for Austen to get out her claws and hold her mirror up to society. Things have changed since, the scandals may seem tame but the hurts they would cause would still be far reaching even if the consequences very different now. The ending still makes me smile and sigh with relief (trying not to spoil things for future readers too much!) and it is over all too quickly.
Juliet Stevenson's reading of the audio book is excellent with some brilliant voices for the different characters, she certainly sounded like she was having a lot of fun as she was reading it!
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Juliet Stevenson reads at just the right pace and intonation. Her voice is soft and clear. The story is classic Jane Austin with the clear hints at feminism and the inferior position of women. The end, although predictable, is worth waiting for with not a few surprises on the way.
Not perhaps my favourite Austen, but brought to life by the lively and intelligent reading of the ever delightful Juliet Stevenson.
Amateur theatricals are disapproved of in Mansfield Park. The heroine Fanny is the more than usually docile heroine who holds to her austere principles throughout and is finally rewarded, at the very last moment, by union with her hero, having rebuffed the villain.
Where does Mansfield Park rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?
Who was your favorite character and why?
Miss Crawford - she is selfish, shallow, catty and manipulative but entirely open about it and proud of the fact - you can't wait for her comeuppance!
What does Juliet Stevenson bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?
Her diction and characterisation are faultless - I cannot imagine listening to anyone else narrating Jane Austen as she has spoilt me.
Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?
No - it is unabridged and forms part of my nightly listening when unable to sleep in the early hours!
Any additional comments?
I am enjoying my Audible experience thoroughly!
I love all the Jane Austen books but Mansfield park took me longer to warm to. I first read it at 16 at which time I felt Fanny Price to be very dull. However, age and rereading the book several times have made me love it more. Fanny is a little moralising but is very affectionate, self-deprecating and patient and her romance is much more of a show burn than many of the other heroines of Austenland (though perhaps Emma's is as late to arrive).
Juliet Stevenson's narration is a joy to listen to. I had a version of Mansfield Park read by someone else but after listening to Ms Stevensons narration of Persuasion I rebought all the Austen books which she has narrated (being all the completed works other than price and prejudice) and I must have listened to them all 5 or 6 times over the last 10 years. she really brings alive the characters, no mean feat when you think of how different the austen heroines are.
Charlotte Bronte accused Jane Austen's novels as akin to taking place within a walled garden. Mansfield Park is one of the few times Austen steps briefly beyond the garden gate, and she doesn't like what she sees.
With the exception of Emma's meddling in the love life of Harriet Smith, in "Emma", Austin has little to say about the under-classes. They usually appear as undifferentiated "servants" with nothing to say for themselves. However In "Mansfield Park", Fanny is born to a working class father and a landed mother fallen on hard times but she is adopted and essentially raised in society comfort by her wealthy aunt and her family.
In an excruciatingly blatant piece of class prejudice Austen determines and discriminates her way through Fanny's brief return to her origins - an overcrowded Portsmouth hovel which, strangely, is equipped with servants. Fanny's relief is boundless on her return "home" to Mansfield Park.
It is a type of prejudice altogether absent in the work of the Bronte sisters, although they and Austen were not exactly contemporaneous.
As for the rest of the book, it is the usual trajectory of thwarted romance that comes good in the end.
Juliet Stephenson's narration is flawless, as usual, and the production quality is of the high standard typical of "Naxos" audiobooks.
I read and listen to this book every few years and l still love it as much as the first read. Love the era it's written on and the writing is magical. I can listen to Juliet all day.
Juliet Stevenson is a fabulous narrator, especially for Austen. Her performance is warm and engaging, and she does equal justice to both male and female characters.
Austen's novels are the perfect antidote to stress or a bad day, and Mansfield Park is no exception.
Whilst Mansfield Park is not one of my favourite Austen novels, Juliet Stevenson creates a beautiful ambient setting. Her characterisation is distinctive, but not dramatised. A fantastic listen.
I do love Jane Austen novels. The era and culture of those times is fascinating with the rigid class structure and customs as well as the inferior role of women in society. Life has changed so much, so different but so interesting, such a contrast to today's world. The characters were well developed. The narration was perfect. The ending was a little disappointing because it was rushed and a bit strange that it was acceptable for first cousins to be marrying. Otherwise I enjoyed the story very much.