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12 July 2013


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Taylor @ Reading is the Thing

I'm listening to The Madman's Daughter on audio right now, and so far I really like it. I might come back to this list after I finish so I can continue with the awesome gothic feel.


I second the recommendation for The Thirteenth Tale. One of my all time favorites that I've read in the past couple of years. I can add twins, faithful family retainers, misguided governess, a crumbling estate, and an unreliable narrator to the list. There are two heroines here: Vida Winter, a famous author, whose life story is coming to an end, and Margaret Lea, a young, unworldly, bookish girl who is a bookseller in her father's shop. Vida has been confounding her biographers and fans for years by giving everybody a different version of her life, each time swearing it's the truth. Because of a biography that Margaret has written about brothers, Vida chooses Margaret to tell her story, all of it, for the first time. At their initial meeting, the conversation begins:
"'You have given nineteen different versions of your life story to journalists in the last two years alone.' She [Vida] shrugged. 'It's my profession. I'm a storyteller.' 'I am a biographer, I work with facts.'"

The audio version narrated by Bianca Amato and Jill Tanner is fantastic, as would be expected from two such skilled narrators. However, be careful when making your selection if you decide to go the audio route. There’s an abridged version, which I originally purchased by mistake after reading the book, with Ruthie Henshall and Lynn Redgrave narrating. It's also excellent, it has Lynn Redgrave after all, but it's abridged so a lot of the nuance of the story is missing.

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