The Confessions of Frannie Langton

A Novel
Narrated by: Sara Collins, Roy McMillan
Length: 12 hrs and 14 mins
4.0 out of 5 stars (162 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

A servant and former slave is accused of murdering her employer and his wife in this astonishing historical thriller that moves from a Jamaican sugar plantation to the fetid streets of Georgian London - a remarkable literary debut with echoes of Alias Grace, The Underground Railroad, and The Paying Guests.

All of London is abuzz with the scandalous case of Frannie Langton, accused of the brutal double murder of her employers, renowned scientist George Benham and his eccentric French wife, Marguerite. Crowds pack the courtroom, eagerly following every twist, while the newspapers print lurid theories about the killings and the mysterious woman being tried at the Old Bailey. 

The testimonies against Frannie are damning. She is a seductress, a witch, a master manipulator, a whore.

But Frannie claims she cannot recall what happened that fateful evening, even if remembering could save her life. She doesn’t know how she came to be covered in the victims’ blood. But she does have a tale to tell: a story of her childhood on a Jamaican plantation, her apprenticeship under a debauched scientist who stretched all bounds of ethics, and the events that brought her into the Benhams’ London home - and into a passionate and forbidden relationship.

Though her testimony may seal her conviction, the truth will unmask the perpetrators of crimes far beyond murder and indict the whole of English society itself.

The Confessions of Frannie Langton is a breathtaking debut: a murder mystery that travels across the Atlantic and through the darkest channels of history. A brilliant, searing depiction of race, class, and oppression that penetrates the skin and sears the soul, it is the story of a woman of her own making in a world that would see her unmade.

©2019 Sara Collins (P)2019 HarperCollins Publishers

What listeners say about The Confessions of Frannie Langton

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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Wasnt sure about this but glad i read it

Very eye opening story about the transition from slave time to “freedom “. As a Jamaican woman , this was very entertaining and enjoyed the end. Made me think about how past events affects the mental of the slave descendants Great read

3 people found this helpful

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I had to return this book after 15 minutes

This would have been such a good book if the author wasn't the narrator. She bore me after 15 minutes. I really wanted to listen but I couldn't.

2 people found this helpful

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Entertaining Book

Despite the narration (I wish the author had chosen not to read her own book), I enjoyed the overall story. It took me a while to "get over" the narration as it was a bit monotone most of the time.

2 people found this helpful

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Takes you to a place in time

The language used and the vivid scenes are offensive to today's thoughts in culture. This story is fictional but one that is to true of thought of some men. Men about women,women about men and people about race.

4 people found this helpful

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Fantastic read

What a captivating story— love, pseudoscience, slavery, human wickedness, and murder in a complex and fascinating story line I actually read it twice — and it only got better

1 person found this helpful

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Great historical novel

The truth only unveils little by little throughout to make complete sense. The story is very well researched and full of great themes. Teachers should use this in their classrooms.

1 person found this helpful

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The Author’s Voice

Listening to Collins read her own novel was a treat for the ears, even though this narrative is not for the faint of heart. Collins tells a hard, harsh story, illuminated by her extensive historical research. She is a master of metaphor, with phrases poetically crafted, and the beauty of her language offsets the cold world of title character’s reality,

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Awful

This story was not enjoyable at all! The main reason is due to the poor narration. No distinction between characters, male, female, British accents or Jamaican accents. This made it difficult to follow. And it all got more confusing towards the end. The narrator referred to multiple characters as “you.” Very confusing!

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Amazing Story

LOVED how complex and delicate this story is. Frannie, Phibbah and Sal will stay with me for a long while. I fear white women like Miss-Bella and Meg *shudders* who play with a different kind of cruel than men like Mr. Benham and Langton. Amazing story, I had to listen to the book at 1.5x the speed because it felt a little too slow but I really like when authors do their own narration.

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Tragic

Frannie’s life was very difficult. The misconception of what a person of color is (a creation or of limited intelligence) was very disturbing. Her original owner Langston was a vile human being and her early life sparked a profound distaste for all that she had to endure. Langstons’s testing on “black” people to document a scientific paper was abhorrent not to mention his behavior toward her and others in the Jamaican household. Then he takes her to England and leaves her with the Benhams,another family with a compromised lifestyle and she is further demoralized until she is accused of murdering the husband and wife. Frannie’s telling of the story was tragic. From a naive child to the women in prison this story was a really hard read. I appreciate the author’s research but the tone of the book was truly sad.