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Publisher's Summary

The time is 1903. Carruthers, on leave from Britain's Foreign Service, accepts an invitation from his friend, Davies, to sail around the Baltic. But Davies has a secret mission. He has run afoul of a secret German invasion plot and persuades Carruthers to push into unknown waters with him to find out what it is the Germans are hiding before it is too late. The Riddle of the Sands is considered the first modern espionage story. It is the only novel written by Erskine Childers, an Intelligence Officer for the Royal Navy during World War I, a decorated soldier, and a suspected double agent and mastermind of the rebellion against the young Irish Free State.

(P)1988 by Recorded Books, Inc.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
  • Robert
  • North Hollywood, CA, USA
  • 02-08-06

technical difficulty is fatal

I really wanted to hear Patrick Tull read this alleged masterpiece, but the sound was so bad I couldn't follow it. I understand the Burton Jouney to Mecca and Medina is being remixed, and I hope this one can be next. This is one of the greatest readers of the sport -- as those who've heard him read the Patrick O'Brien novels well know.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • John
  • Campbell, US, Canada
  • 10-17-05

Poor Audio Quality

As a five year customer of Audible, I have to say this book is of the poorest quality. Find another production of this book. As another reader wrote, this is the only Audible book I have had to give up on due to audio quality.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

the gold standard

The best spy novel I've ever read, and one of the best sea stories to boot. The author (executed by a firing squad--what a credential!) didn't set out to write an entertainment, he wanted to alert the British public to what he thought was a terrible threat (I won't give it away). To get the message to the most possible people, Childers had to come up with a story that was un-put-downable, and in so doing he came up with many of the narrative devices that make the modern thriller thrilling. One guy I know keeps four or five copies on his bookshelf at all times to give away.

7 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • NKBH
  • Louisville, KY United States
  • 07-31-05

Cannot be understood

I was so excited to find this title available from Audio, but I found the narrator's heavy British accent and speed of reading totally incomprehensible. I tried listening to it off my ipod, on the computer and on CD. None of them allowed me to get my "ears" adjusted to the reader - so that I could follow the story. I have listened to over 100 books on audio and this is the only one that I have had to give up on due to the narrator. Oh well, I will just read the book.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Sound quality dooms this reading

Please, please remix this to improve the audio quality. Patrick Tull is my favorite narrator and the Riddle of the Sands is a great read. I also started this several times, even slowing the playback on iPod. It did not help.

  • Overall
  • Teresa
  • Rancho Santa Fe, CA, USA
  • 02-02-05

Riddle of the Sands

This is without a doubt the best spy novel ever written. It could only have been done by one who "was there." I have given many copies to friends over the years and have read it several times myself. I never tire of this story and intend to visit all the places it covers some day. You have to listen!

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Go to the library

My sister recommended the story and I suspect it's a good book, but this comes only in audio format 1 and is impossible to listen to. Between the audio quality (huge background hiss), the fast pace of the narrator and his English accent (makes sense since it's set in England), I could not understand any of it. I started this book 5 times. I usually listen in the car - I tried different headphones, I tried it piped through the radio (my usual method), I tried listening to it in the house in a quiet environment. Nothing worked. Buy the book and read it - or wait until its in a cleaner audio format. This was a waste of my credit.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful