The Scarlet Pimpernel

Narrated by: Wanda McCaddon
Series: The Scarlet Pimpernel, Book 1
Length: 8 hrs and 4 mins
4 out of 5 stars (20 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

In the year 1792, Sir Percy and Lady Marguerite Blakeney are the darlings of British society---he is known as one of the wealthiest men in England and a dimwit; she is French, a stunning former actress, and "the cleverest woman in Europe"---and they find themselves at the center of a deadly political intrigue. The Reign of Terror controls France, and every day aristocrats in Paris fall victim to Madame la Guillotine. Only one man can rescue them---the Scarlet Pimpernel, a master of disguise who leaves a calling card bearing only a signature red flower.

As the fascinating connection between the Blakeneys and this mysterious hero is revealed, they are forced to choose between love and loyalty in order to avoid the French agent Chauvelin, who relentlessly hunts the Scarlet Pimpernel.

The Scarlet Pimpernel is the best-known novel by Baroness Emmuska Orczy, a prolific author of popular fiction and plays. First published in 1905, it pioneered the tale of the masked avenger and paved the way for such future enigmatic swashbucklers as Zorro and the Lone Ranger. Repeatedly adapted for stage and screen---including as a successful Broadway musical---The Scarlet Pimpernel is a relevant and enormously entertaining tale of survival and pluck during times of widespread fear, hypocrisy, and corruption.

Public Domain (P)2009 Tantor
What members say
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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Good Story

I enjoyed listening to this book. Made the day go by quickly. A good book to listen to.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

A Classic Reading of a Classic Tale

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

The performance was engaging in ways most audiobooks are not. The expression was fantastc, varying speed, volume and intensity as appropriate to the characters in each scene.

What other book might you compare The Scarlet Pimpernel to and why?

The Scarlet Pimpernel ranks among other classic adventures, such as The Three Musketeers and Treasure Island. This is actually my favorite adventure story of all time.

What does Wanda McCaddon bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Wanda did a fabulous job with accents and pronunciation which my limited study of French could not have reproduced. I love that she didn't try to disguise her voice to represent various characters, but rather used her own voice to mimic the attitudes and personalities in the book. It felt like actually reading the book, rather than listening to a dry or over dramatized recording.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

They Seek Him Here...

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

Cute and fun but a little light

The reading is wonderful. The book is cute and fun but, to me, a little on the repetitive and superficial side. The story takes place around 1792 which you wouldn't know from looking at the cover art.