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Waterland Audiobook

Waterland

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Publisher's Summary

This brilliant and compelling novel is at once a lyrical description of the Fens, a fictional autobiography, and an impassioned defence of history. The narrator, an English schoolteacher, and his interior world of memories combine with the exterior world of the bleak Fenland landscape to produce a multiplicity of stories. Swift weaves together tales of empire building, land reclamation, brewers and lock-keepers to construct a chronicle that spans three centuries.

Waterland is simultaneously a family saga, a novel of provincial life, a social history and a story of adolescent love.

©1983 Graham Swift  (P)2014 Audible, Inc.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (35 )
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4.4 (28 )
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4.4 (30 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Lauren 07-28-17
    Lauren 07-28-17 Member Since 2016

    High School Teacher since '12 Masters Degree in English Lit '18

    ratings
    REVIEWS
    18
    15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "It takes 2 reads, but the layers seem endless"
    If you could sum up Waterland in three words, what would they be?

    layered, symbolic, internalized


    What did you like best about this story?

    The narrator. He tells the story as a memory and part internal conversation. He contradicts himself, because he is working through trauma. How the novel's structure mimics trauma is impressive and interesting to work through. The way he works through his trauma, the reader goes through it with him.


    Which character – as performed by Christian Rodska – was your favorite?

    No standouts. He does a good job making different voices for different characters.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    It is best to, in order to pick up on the repetitions and parallels, which made the novel impressive.


    Any additional comments?

    The main plot is set during the narrators childhood, this memory is triggered by his current experiences. He frames the story with paralleled stories of the history of the Fens. At first, these historical stories are tough to attach to the main story--especially because of their lengths, but on the second read everything fits. It simply takes 2 reads.
    The book questions reality and history--whether they are truly created and organized to distract us from the world's emptiness.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    M. Henderson 12-18-15

    Author, reader, listener... interested in Great Books of the Western World, historical fiction, Victorian poetry, and some fiction.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    7
    ratings
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    32
    21
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    7
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Brilliant author, provocative style, great performance"

    In my second reading of this book, I also listened along (using whispersync). Graham Swift's flashbacks and flash forwards, with occasional historical interludes were fascinating and captivating. I think the spoken version alone might be difficult, especially for the first read. I recommend reading along.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
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  • Eccles
    7/20/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Flat lands but no flat story"
    Where does Waterland rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Its not the best book I've listened to but it is riveting and a page turner


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Waterland?

    The description of the flooded fenland and the effect it had on the local inhabitants


    Which character – as performed by Christian Rodska – was your favourite?

    They were all done so well it is impossible to choose. Perhaps the narrator came over most convincingly


    If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    In a land of water where water rules lives, life is as unpredictable as the waters.


    Any additional comments?

    The way this book is structured is a little difficult to follow at first, but once used to the way of it, becomes an important factor in the suspense. A slight niggle for me was the end which I felt was a bit drawn-out. Otherwise a well written gripping story.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Martin Minter
    11/1/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A picture of rural England"

    A intriguing story of generations living on the Fens. Quite deep at times, but I felt a real warmth towards the characters involved. It had a similar feeling to a wartime Ealing studios film. It could have moved more quickly at times, but that may have taken away some of the period atmosphere. Not a fast read, though engrossing.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • croc fan
    10/15/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Brilliant"

    I can't recommend this book highly enough! Superb reading complimented the excellent story. Such rich use of language.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Helen
    3/28/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Brilliantly narrated and fascinating story"

    I have recently moved to the Fens and this story has made me feel right at home. I absolutely loved it, beautifully written and narrated.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Judith
    Pinner, United Kingdom
    6/7/12
    Overall
    "Woven words"

    A richly vivid tapestry of images and characters, brought to life by a compelling reading, it's almost a long lyric poem.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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