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Swimming Lessons Audiobook

Swimming Lessons

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Publisher's Summary

Ingrid Coleman writes letters to her husband, Gil, about the truth of their marriage, but instead of giving them to him, she hides each in the thousands of books he has collected over the years. When Ingrid has written her final letter, she disappears from a Dorset beach, leaving behind her beautiful but dilapidated house by the sea, her husband, and her two daughters, Flora and Nan.

Twelve years after her disappearance, Gil thinks he sees Ingrid from a bookshop window, but he's getting older, and this unlikely sighting is chalked up to senility. Flora, who has never believed her mother drowned, returns home to care for her father and to try to finally discover what happened to Ingrid. But what Flora doesn't realize is that the answers to her questions are hidden in the books that surround her. Sexy and whip-smart, Swimming Lessons holds the Coleman family up to the light, exposing the mysterious and complicated truths of a passionate and troubled marriage.

©2017 Claire Fuller (P)2016 Audible, Ltd

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.7 (122 )
5 star
 (32)
4 star
 (48)
3 star
 (26)
2 star
 (9)
1 star
 (7)
Overall
3.6 (111 )
5 star
 (30)
4 star
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3 star
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2 star
 (8)
1 star
 (11)
Story
4.4 (111 )
5 star
 (62)
4 star
 (37)
3 star
 (9)
2 star
 (1)
1 star
 (2)
Performance
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  •  
    Lindsay 03-27-17
    Lindsay 03-27-17 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    5
    3
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    FOLLOWING
    0
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    Performance
    Story
    "I was addicted to listening to this story!!"

    A must listen for every woman!! A tale of "what not to do". Loved the story and the narrator's many voices!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ruth Bain 05-09-17
    Ruth Bain 05-09-17

    RueRue

    HELPFUL VOTES
    1383
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    559
    552
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    71
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Sorry, but this is SO BORING"

    Even the excellent narrator couldn't keep me listening. This was beyond boring, and the characters, especially Gil, were unlikable.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tammy Wallace 05-09-17 Member Since 2014
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    4
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Flat ending"

    Great narration. Odd ending. I was expecting more after being pulled into each character. It felt like it was left unfinished.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ana Morales 04-20-17
    Ana Morales 04-20-17 Member Since 2016
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    7
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Amazing Read!"

    Rachel Atkins is a marvelous reader for this layered novel of life choices, expectations and letdowns.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Leslie Smyrna, SC, United States 04-11-17
    Leslie Smyrna, SC, United States 04-11-17 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    44
    22
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    0
    1
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    Performance
    Story
    "captivating"

    I find this author to rapidly capture my attention. the characters she develops are wonderful, some you love some you detest but all are intriguing. after listening to the book I had to have it in my hands so I ordered the book and I know I'll reread certain parts or all of it

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
Sort by:
  • Rachel Redford
    2/6/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Beautifully beguiling - don't miss it!"


    Claire Fuller's slightly mystical, beautifully written first novel was Our Endless Numbered Days which I highly recommended on my Audible review page on 27/7/2015. Her second novel Swimming Lessons fulfils all the promise of her first - I loved it.

    The structure is carefully contrived but is seamless to read or listen to as we're taken backwards and forwards in time. Ingrid is a university student who falls for her slightly predatory far older tutor Gil Coleman and when she finds she's pregnant, they marry. Ingrid is not allowed to take her Finals and Gil loses his job and becomes a full time writer, although in fact he spends more time philandering and very little writing anything beyond one successful (and ultimately destructive) book. Ingrid struggles with children and miscarriages, the pain of which is exquisitely described. She has always been happiest in the water, and one day she leaves her clothes on the beach and disappears.

    The other layer of the story is Gil as a broken old man, irascible and selfish in his house stacked with thousands of books, with his two very different grown-up daughters Flora and Nan around him. Their memories of their missing mother and their present day lives haunted by her disappearance form a strand of the narrative, but the core is made up of the letters which Ingrid wrote to Gil as her passionate marriage fell apart and which she doesn't give to him, but slips inside random books on his overflowing shelves.

    Like her previous novel, there is a light touch of fairy tale which transports the listener, but at the same time it's firmly rooted in real life and the idiosyncrasies, complexities, pain and pleasures of relationships. The rhythm of the story is like the sea which is so important to the whole story, ebbing, flowing, constantly moving. The themes of betrayal, regret, guilt, loss, absence, isolation are all worked through with a gentle delicacy, the language always imaginative and fresh. There are some mysteries which are never solved, and some solutions are dispersed through the story like beads on a necklace. The narrator Rachel Atkins does a great job and adds another dimension to the novel - the dialogue is particularly skilfully presented.

    Don't miss this one, and look out for Claire Fuller's third one!



    7 of 7 people found this review helpful
  • Sarah
    2/11/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Dreadful."

    Nothing wrong with the narration, however, there was no story at all. It just limped along at a tedious pace. I wanted to throttle youngest daughter who winged her way through the story. Awful.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Susan Whitehead
    2/10/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Swimming Lessons"

    The blurb for this sounded really good and it was a recommended book by you . Have got as far as chapter 5 l just can't bring myself to read any more. Very trivial and silly story

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Sally
    5/15/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Depressing and sad story"

    Struggled to finish it. It was so depressing and the circumstances the mother found herself in were awful. I felt the half written by the mum in letters were so sad that the struggle the daughters and husband had in the modern day were less important.

    The narration was excellent.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • veronica
    cheshire
    4/22/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "I'de rather sink"
    What disappointed you about Swimming Lessons?

    I thought this story just drifted along. I kept thinking that it was going to suddenly have a purpose. I didn't like any of the characters especially the youngest daughter.
    I got to around chapter 50ish and gave up the will to live, I'll never get that time back.


    What will your next listen be?

    Something with murder in it.


    What didn’t you like about Rachel Atkins’s performance?

    She did her best.


    You didn’t love this book--but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    Non


    Any additional comments?

    I think I might just take up writing, it looks pretty simple.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Julia
    3/9/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Beautifully constructed work"

    This book was read brilliantly. The reader captured the characters well.

    The story was good too, though the topic took me a while to get into. The author keeps you hanging right until the end.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Katherine Croft
    3/7/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Excellent"

    Thoroughly enjoyed this audiobook.

    It kept me guessing all the way through - is she or isn't she...

    I thought the narration was very good.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Bookworm
    Rostock, Germany
    3/6/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "No thriller but suspense up to the last minute"

    What a book! Couldn't put it down and out of my mind. Loved every minute of it. And beautifully read.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Jayne
    cassop, United Kingdom
    3/4/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Where's the story????"
    What disappointed you about Swimming Lessons?

    There was no plot, no proper ending, a waste of a precious credit, all through the book I was waiting for something to happen but sadly nothing did, save your credit.


    Would you ever listen to anything by Claire Fuller again?

    No


    What does Rachel Atkins bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

    The narration was good pity Rachel didn't have anything good to narrate.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    Boredom


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • android1968
    Brighton
    2/7/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great!"

    Lovely concept, well written and brilliantly narrated. Looking forward to reading more Clare Fuller very soon!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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