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Publisher's Summary

From the New York Times best-selling author of Me Before You and One Plus One, a post-WWII story of the war brides who crossed the seas by the thousands to face their unknown futures.

1946: World War II has ended and all over the world young women are beginning to fulfill the promises made to the men they wed in wartime.

In Sydney, Australia, four women join 650 other war brides on an extraordinary voyage to England - aboard HMS Victoria, which still carries not just arms and aircraft but a thousand naval officers. Rules are strictly enforced, from the aircraft carrier’s captain down to the lowliest young deckhand. But the men and the brides will find their lives intertwined despite the Navy’s ironclad sanctions. And for Frances Mackenzie, the complicated young woman whose past comes back to haunt her far from home, the journey will change her life in ways she never could have predicted - forever.

©2014 Jojo Moyes (P)2014 Penguin Audio

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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3.75 stars

Being a born Aussie I approached this book with equal parts curiosity and apprehension. Curiosity because this topic of Australian war brides was unfamiliar to me except in the vaguest sense and apprehension because non- Australian writers rarely write Australian characters well without falling into the trap of stereotyping.

The story was interesting and unique. The plot meandered its way through the voyage rather than dragged as it gradually introduced and unpacked each character and his or her story. The main characters were well written but did appear to me to be cardboard cut outs of stereotypical 1940's Australian women. Also, Jeans character in particular seemed to spew out clichéd Australian colloquisms so often that I suspect the author gleaned most of that characters dialogue from "an idiots guide to Aussie slang" or something similar.

The narration was really exceptional. The accents were very very well done and inflection and intonation were perfect.

All in all it was a good book. I think it lost points for me because of the stereotypes but I suspect that aspect won't bother other listeners nearly as much as it did me.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

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  • Daryl
  • Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
  • 05-27-14

Unforgetable journey

Would you consider the audio edition of The Ship of Brides to be better than the print version?

Definitely! Nicolette McKenzie is a wonderful narrator, with accents and feeling for both men and women. I checked this book out of my library a year ago, and it has stayed with me ever since. As soon as I saw it on Audible, I jumped on it.

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Ship of Brides?

The ending - no spoilers! I also enjoyed the descriptions of Margaret's boistrous family life.

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

Oh, that voice! She can read anything!

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

The ending was immensely emotionally moving, both the happy and the sad bits.

Any additional comments?

As stated above, this book was wonderful! I read this a year ago and never forgot it. Jojo Moyes is a very talented author, and using a ship as a plot device was wonderful. With the advances in air travel, it's hard to imagine a weeks-long journey across the sea, in essence trapped on a boat with hundreds of other people, when these days you hear stories about being stuck on trans-Atlantic flights sitting behind a screaming baby. The period details about the war, the journey, the culture... beautiful!

11 of 12 people found this review helpful

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views of men and women have NOT CHANGED AT ALL

AMAZING!!!! What an awesome book.

At first I was worried as it was a slow and tedious beginning, then it slowly builds up and all you want to know is how they will survive on that ship.

I was sobbing at the end, I never thought it would ever end like that. Perfection.

You come to know the women, love some of them, hate others, pray all their journey’s are not for waste, hope each one finds happiness, and get sickened that society and it’s views of men and women have NOT CHANGED AT ALL!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Good read

Story got a little long at the end but a good summer read
Narrator was great
Not too much about WW2
But about after the war
Interesting

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • dominique
  • Portland, OR, United States
  • 06-26-15

Amazing

I couldn't stop listening to this book, it is the third of hers I have read and now my favourite .
The narration is some of the best I have heard and I have heard a lot.
Let yourself be lost in a piece of real history turned into a fantastic work of fiction.
Superb



4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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Another great story by Moyes

I have enjoyed many of Jojo Moyes books and this was no exception. The story is weaved together wonderfully, giving us insight into the lives of a number of different people on this journey. And the narration was great...i would recommend!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • beth
  • LEAGUE CITY, TX, United States
  • 03-28-15

An Incredible Journey

This boom kept me riveted from start to finish. 650 Australian brides are to travel on an airline carrier to meet their husbands after the end if the war. The story is told from 7 different perspectives each as intriguing as the last. The whole concept unbelievable yet based on real events. Moyes is a brilliant author and I love everything of hers I have read to date.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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IT DOESN'T GET MUCH BETTER THAN THIS.

Would you listen to The Ship of Brides again? Why?

YES! I don't think there were any uninteresting characters. All had depth and kept you wanting more. And, Nicolette McKenzie handled them all wonderfully.

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Ship of Brides?

Probably when I was crying my eyes out but I don't want to give away anything by saying when that was.

Which scene was your favorite?

When the captain and Francis had their in-depth conversation was revealing but the fire scene was excellent, too.

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

6 weeks can make a lifetime.

Any additional comments?

I would have liked to have found out about the fate of Jean and maybe also Margaret's mom.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Another good book for Jojo Moyes

Another good book for Jojo Moyes. Enjoyed it a lot... Loved the ending... the story develops very nicely and leads to a great ending...

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Just So So. Not Great, Not Bad

TO me one of the most frustrating things about this book is the lack of motivation. Here is a ship where brides are being transported from Australia to London to meet up with their husbands/fiances. They are given a chaperone who rarely seems to be around and their billets is guarded every night by one or more of the sailors. (Fox guarding the chicken house?)

The women are on the ship for a mere six weeks and yet several act like ally cats almost from the beginning. Why? Yes, some are very young, but again, If you are sailing to see your husband or fiance, you really can't go 6 weeks without drinking and flirting with sailors? It's understandable that the sailors on the ship have been at war, away from their loved ones (and women) for some period of time - so we see their possible motivation.

It's not an impossible listen at all. It just doesn't have a lot of depth, fascinating plot, or motivation for some of the characters. Don't expect a full resolution for all the characters at the end, because it doesn't happen.