The Award

Narrated by: Adam Verner
Length: 9 hrs and 28 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (1,257 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Capturing historical events, terrifying moments of danger, tragedy, the price of war, and the invincible spirit of a woman of honor, The Award is a monumental tale from one of our most gifted storytellers - Danielle Steel's finest, most emotionally resonant novel yet.

Gaëlle de Barbet is sixteen years old in 1940 when the German army occupies France and frightening changes begin. She is shocked and powerless when French gendarmes take away her closest friend, Rebekah Feldmann, and her family, and send them to a detention camp for deportation to an unknown, ominous fate.

The local German military commandant makes Gaëlle's family estate outside Lyon into his headquarters. Her father and brother are killed by the Germans; her mother fades away into madness and ill health. Trusted friends and employees become traitors. And by accident, Gaëlle begins a perilous journey with the French Resistance, hoping to save lives to make up for the beloved friend she could do nothing to help.

Taking terrifying risks, Gaëlle becomes a valuable member of the Resistance, fearlessly delivering Jewish children to safety underneath the eyes of the Gestapo and their French collaborators. Then she is suddenly approached by the German commandant with an astonishing and dangerous plan to save part of France's artistic heritage as the Germans withdraw. And once again, her life is on the line. Conducted in secret, flawlessly carried out, her missions for the Resistance change her life and mark her for years. She is falsely accused of collaboration at the end of the war, and flees Lyon in disgrace, orphaned and alone. She goes to Paris to put the war behind her and begin a new life, with the ghosts of the past always close at hand.

Gaëlle's life will take her from Paris to New York, from a career as a Dior model to marriage and motherhood, unbearable loss, and mature, lasting love. She returns to Paris to run a small museum, honoring victims of the Holocaust. She has never sought recognition for her courage during the war years she can never forget. Her label as a collaborator remains, until her granddaughter, a respected political journalist, is determined that past wrongs finally be made right, and her grandmother's brave acts be recognized. Now a grateful nation will finally acknowledge this remarkable woman. At last, she is absolved and honored as the war hero she was.

©2016 Danielle Steel (P)2016 Brilliance Audio, all rights reserved.

What listeners say about The Award

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Not my favorite Steel book...

It just seemed like a lot of things were repeated over and over...like how much they loved each other...we get it, we got it after the first several times. The first part of the book was the best. IDK, the story line just didn't have the usual somewhat believable air to it. It was not so bad that I could not finish it, but it was just not up to snuff in my minds eye. The narrator was not my favorite either, that may have a lot to do with my disappointment in the book. over pronunciation in French, and there was just something about his voice... oh, well, maybe I will be back in tune with the next book

32 people found this helpful

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Disappointed!

The story was exceptional, but I was continuously distracted by the narrator's poor presentation. I could read that material more effectively without having ever seen it -- and I just turned eighty-eight!

50 people found this helpful

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Very slow book

Book was slow. Story could have been good but just fall short. The narrator put me to sleep! Not her best work.

34 people found this helpful

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Yawn. Skip it

What disappointed you about The Award?

This is the first and last book by the author I'll suffer through. Had to read it for book club. Has no prose to enjoy or literary value. A sappy disappointment.

Has The Award turned you off from other books in this genre?

Absolutely

51 people found this helpful

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It would have been a good story

It would have been a good story to listen to, as I’m a big fan of D.S. but sorry, the narration is awful 🤷🏻‍♀️.

17 people found this helpful

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what happened to her?

I sighed in exasperation as the same thing was said over and over in different ways. I used to love Danielle Steel but last 20 books have been filled with fillers to make a simple story go on and on. Still this is better than the last few books.

8 people found this helpful

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Wonderful

Probably one of Danielle Steel's best yet. I love, love, loved every minute of it.

8 people found this helpful

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Terrific

I enjoyed this book very much. One of her best!
Love when real history is mixed in.

7 people found this helpful

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The Devastation of War<br />

The story of the atrocities played out by the Hitler regime and its allies is horrendous. One cannot fathom how seemingly intelligent people could let such odious things occur. Still, there were the brave acts and kindnesses of strangers that came to light after the war which gives a ray of hope for the future. This is one such story.

4 people found this helpful

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OMG

it made me cry, sod that stuff like this is true!!!!!!greatfull for people like her

4 people found this helpful

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  • Jaye22
  • 06-14-20

Captivating Story

I could not stop listening to this story, I was engrossed from the start. The horror of what Gaëlle went through as a young girl throughout the time of Germany occupying France. Her closet friend Rebekah being sent to a concentration camp. Gaëlle visits Rebekah and takes risks giving her her coat amongst other things. Then she becomes ill and cannot visit her friend and as she recovers she finds those she holds dear are ripped from her life.

As the war is coming to an end she does a lot of heroic things like rescuing and transporting children to better places and smuggling art to keep it in France and all the while remaining modest and humble.

As the years go on her life completely changes and so much more happens.

I have read Danielle Steel books before but this one for me is a real departure from all her work. I recommend it.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 01-03-17

Beautiful book

I loved this book, the story and characters felt real, and spent the the few chapters in tears, a really good read didn't want it to end

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Profile Image for Petra 🤗📚📓🖋📮
  • Petra 🤗📚📓🖋📮
  • 01-03-17

bravery ... has so many meanings..

Where does The Award rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

I would say The Award is in my top 10 of favourite audiobooks as we not only seen a brief glimpse into the life of the main character but the author took us on a journey throughout her life .. we were able to see her at her happiest but yet it was the hardest of times which made her the person she turned out to be..

What did you like best about this story?

Gaëlle de Barbet was a character who was so brave throughout the war.. rescuing the Jewish children from the death camps bringing them to safety while living under the Nazi rule yet her personal life after the war she let her daughter rule her life as she still held the shame of the accusations from the time of her youth.

Have you listened to any of Adam Verner’s other performances? How does this one compare?

This is the first I have listened by this narrrator as sometimes I find the American accent annoying yet I could have listened to his dulcet tones forever as he was able to bring emotion through his narration and simple defeatism by changing the tone of his voice..

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

When Gaëlle de Barbet was finally acknowledged for her bravery through the war.. not by those who give her the award but her family especially her oldest daughter.

Any additional comments?

This is a fascinating book which showed not only the poverty of the main character's early years but as she progressed through life and her riches grew in different ways.. the simple pleasures of life were the ones she took so much happiness from.