The Snakes

A Novel
Narrated by: Imogen Church
Length: 13 hrs and 56 mins
4 out of 5 stars (76 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

"The Snakes is many things - a parable and an ancient drama where a father’s greed devours his children, a police procedural, an avid take on tabloid venality, and a bitter comedy, superbly observed, where behind a woman’s eyes she is ‘all movement inside herself, like a wasp in a glass.’ I admit that I’m still shaken by parts of this novel. Sadie Jones writes with pitiless aplomb and corrosive intelligence." (Louise Erdrich)

A chilling story and impossible to pause, The Snakes is Sadie Jones at her best: breathtakingly powerful, brilliantly incisive, and utterly devastating.

The new novel by Sadie Jones tells the tense and violent story of the Adamsons, a dysfunctional English family, with exceptional wealth, whose darkest secrets come back to bite them. Set mostly in rural France during contemporary times, The Snakes is an all-consuming listen and a devastating portrait of how money corrupts, and how chance can deal a deadly hand.

The Snakes exposes the damage wreaked by parents on children as observed by a new member of the family, Dan, a mixed-race man from Peckham who marries Bea, the daughter who refuses to take any of her father’s filthy money. But when Bea’s brother, Alex (who runs a shabby hotel in Paligny, France), dies suddenly in unexplained circumstances, the confusion and suspicion which arise bring other dark family secrets - and violence - to the surface. And none of the family, even the good members, go untouched.

©2019 Sadie Jones (P)2019 HarperCollins Publishers

What listeners say about The Snakes

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Extraordinary!

I will be awhile regaining my footing after two days immersed in this all consuming novel. I could not stop listening; this one grabbed me and carried me away. Richly complex characters, dialogue that flowed like I was a fly on the wall, atmosphere I could smell, see and feel, soul shredding conflicts which are endemic to the human condition. Do not read any spoilers for this unique novel, just let Imogen Church take you on your personal journey with Bea and Dan. Bon voyage...

3 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Stunning performance by Imogene Church

What kept me riveted to listening was Church’s amazing range of voices. I will look for her as a narrator in future works. She made the audio amazing

2 people found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Très faible; a feckless entity that slinks away.

Like the venom-less snakes in the book, this tale lacks the real juice. Much ado over a temporary jolt to the senses, a slight tear to the skin,

2 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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Pass This One

The premise of this novel seemed great. But it just dragged on and on and most of the characters were insufferable with no redeeming qualities. Sadie Jones actually writes beautifully and offers rich descriptions and brings the setting to life- but I was so frustrated by the characters and their choices and was not satisfied with the ending. Imogen Church is a wonderful narrator and makes the listener feel as if there are actually a number of different voice actors at work- but the parents’ voices were both too angry and whiny- it was exhausting.

1 person found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars

Story made me mad

I hated the father...
Did not understand the mother...
Hated the way it ended...
I wanted to kill the killer...I hate men that beat on women...

1 person found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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Forget it

Worst ending ever. No foreshadowing, no blinking sense at all. What did this ending add? Did it teach anything?

1 person found this helpful

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This books feels very unfinished

All that build up and.... nothing. Let down. I honestly read anything narrated by Imogen Church because she’s the best narrator I’ve ever heard, but this stole couldn’t be saved be her immense talent. I feel like it needed 5 more chapters...

2 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Brutal and Beautiful

This is an exceptional book. It is slow at times. At times the tension is too much to take and you’ll want to scream. But it is very, very well written. At times this book brought tears to my eyes, particularly the ending, which was a bit of a shock. But that’s because I am a conditioned western being who expects happy endings and characters that ride off into the sunset. This book is powerful, brutal, but it is at all times honest. I was stunned to hear the sufic current resonating throughout. The idea of obliteration of the self being the only path to truth. As a student and seeker I was thrilled to hear these references. Attention as currency, attention taken to its highest degree being tantamount to prayer. It’s so cool to hear these things in a work of contemporary fiction. Thank you.

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Tedious, too long

13 plus hours of really nothing happening... the character development was weak as well. I would’ve stopped listening but I was holding out for a good ending which was sorely lacking any creativity. In terms of the performance, I have never heard an American accent butchered so badly.

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Terrible ending

The story great, performance wonderful but the ending very sad and not expected and shocking.