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Past Imperfect Audiobook

Past Imperfect

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Publisher's Summary

Damian Baxter is hugely wealthy and dying. He lives alone in a big house in Surrey, England, looked after by a chauffeur, butler, cook and housemaid. He has but one concern--his fortune in excess of 500 million and who should inherit it on his death. Past Imperfect is the story of a quest. Damian Baxter wishes to know if he has a living heir. By the time he married in his late 30s he was sterile (the result of adult mumps), but what about before that unfortunate illness? Had he sired a child? He sets himself (and others) to the task of finding his heir.

©2008 Julian Fellowes; (P)2009 BBC Audio

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (776 )
5 star
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4.2 (658 )
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Story
4.5 (665 )
5 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Book Worm Los Angeles, CA 04-28-17
    Book Worm Los Angeles, CA 04-28-17 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
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    Story
    "Perfect story,prose and narration"
    Would you listen to Past Imperfect again? Why?

    This may be the first book I would listen to all over again in the near future. It was so rich with delicious vocabulary and insights about life, and metabolizing our imperfect past as wiser adults. Julian Fellowes has a unique gift for writing about the traditional Aristocratic values (since he has first hand knowledge) within the context of contemporary mores. I delight at his nuanced observations of human nature - more of a Sociologist than writer at times, but then he can exquisitely turn it into prose and an intriguing story. The narrator was fabulous, and added immensely to the listening experience. This book was a joy from start to finish. I am only left with one unfinished question, but I don't want to be a spoiler so I will keep it to myself.


    What other book might you compare Past Imperfect to and why?

    Jane Austen novels. It might raise some eyebrows that I have the audacity to compare Julian Fellowes writing to Jane Austen, but she was known for her social commentaries of the times and he is the first to follow in her footsteps in the 21st century.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    Many.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    Many.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tatiana Christiansen 09-08-16
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Best book I've read in a very ling time"

    Julian Fellowes reminds me a bit of Tolstoy in his social observations over the last 60 years. He expresses this in target social commentary within the story of seven friends who spend a social season together but then go their seperate ways. As often happens once members of a generation begin to pass on, acts from one's past sometimes circle back in strange ways. I loved this book so much I listened to twice back to back and sent both of my daughters hardcopies (they are in college) as well as one for my mother-in-law and sister. I first listened to it when one of my closest teenage friends died and I found that I too was forced to remember things I had long forgetten.

    7 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gillian Ontario, Canada 09-12-17
    Gillian Ontario, Canada 09-12-17 Member Since 2015

    Gillian

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    Story
    "Interesting and enjoyable"

    A fascinating look at the death throes of 'the season' in London in the sixties. Characters are perfectly drawn and a good if slightly implausible story.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Cynthia 09-10-17
    Cynthia 09-10-17

    Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    Story
    "Great story, average narration."
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    Yes, I enjoyed the whole story. Touch of mystery and a lot of human experience.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Didn't have one.


    Would you listen to another book narrated by Richard Morant?

    Probably not; this was a narration and not a performance. Most of the audible books today are performed with very different character voices and clearly defined atmosphere. This book was simply read aloud. Not as interesting to listen to.


    Was Past Imperfect worth the listening time?

    Yes, beautifully written and interesting without being earth-shattering.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    JC 08-08-17
    JC 08-08-17 Listener Since 2009
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    "Absolutely fantastic!"

    This is not my typical type of book, and I truly got lost in the story and loved every minute of it!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ednna 08-04-17
    Ednna 08-04-17 Member Since 2016

    ednna

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    Story
    "Great Listen"

    The story was a great explanation of the loss of the great houses of the United Kingdom. The effect of the war on societal structure. The British aristocracy had to change and the changes are all chronicled here. The in depth descriptions of "The Season" and the debutants, the party circuit, the dinners, the parties, the estates and how they were decorated, the food served. Nothing was missed. You felt as if you were there.

    You cared about the characters, got annoyed with some, but each character was fully drawn. You become a part of the story. There is a plot line and it is followed to a surprising conclusion. A good ending. I thoroughly enjoyed it but it won't be for everyone. I liked the tie of history throughout the storytelling the plot. I liked the descriptions of artwork, furnishings, clothes, food, rooms, people. I enjoyed it all.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kjda 08-02-17
    Kjda 08-02-17

    I love getting lost in a good fantasy, sci-fi, romance, or historical fiction, although I'll listen to almost anything fiction.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    24
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    Story
    "A Slightly Long Cultural Experience"
    What did you like best about Past Imperfect? What did you like least?

    This is the perfect question because most of what I liked best is also what I liked least. This book was filled with rich details of the culture of England's aristocracy in the late 1960s and early 1970s as well as how it has changed since that time. I enjoyed how thorough the book was and found the topic often fascinating; however, this book often vacillated between sounding like a nonfiction history book and the overall fictional story of the main character, and this was detracting from the story and the abrupt shifts were difficult to adapt to at times. In addition, I occasionally experienced the protagonist's opinions about the world as a bit dogmatic, which was off-putting. I think some of the facts could have been weeded out to make this book shorter because it did feel a bit slow in the middle, and the constant allusion to the "big event" started to feel overdone since you don't find out until the end what really happened. Overall, I did like the story and appreciated how things were resolved and concluded.


    What did you like about the performance? What did you dislike?

    The narrator did a good job for the most part, but I found his ability to do different accents lacking. I particularly found his American accent grating and difficult to listen to.


    Could you see Past Imperfect being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

    Sure--probably something the BBC would do.


    Any additional comments?

    Worth a credit if you're interested in this particular topic done in a fictional format. If you're not into this, then you'll probably find it long and boring.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    C. Woods Ohio 07-30-17
    C. Woods Ohio 07-30-17 Member Since 2017

    andsewon

    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
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    "Not a book I'd typically choose, but glad I did."

    I bought this either during a special sale or the daily deal. Normally I like Fantasy lit involving some sort of supernatural entity or a dark intriguing mystery.

    This was a bit of mystery and intrigue. Hearing an honest and sober description of the 1960's British aristocracy was fascinating. I couldn't put it down.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Donald Colorado Springs, CO, United States 07-26-17
    Donald Colorado Springs, CO, United States 07-26-17 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    Story
    "Imperfect"
    What did you love best about Past Imperfect?

    What an adventure. To visit your past and have a completely different outlook.
    The English language was totally delightful and in the beginning of this read was captivating. This is a absolute must listen to.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Wyoming Bas Bleu 07-26-17 Member Since 2014
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    9
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    Performance
    Story
    "British Literature"

    This story kept me entertained from start to finish. I has interesting characters and a lot about British society in the 1960's and 70's. It is story about how our early life decisions carry through the rest of our lives. The reader is perfect for this book and it is enjoyable.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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