The stone of the title is an enormous diamond plundered from an Indian shrine after the Siege of Seringapatam. Given to Miss Verinder on her 18th birthday, it mysteriously disappears that very night. Suspicion falls on three Indian jugglers who have been seen in the neighbourhood.
©2001 BBC Audiobooks Ltd; (P)2001 BBC Audiobooks Ltd
Please excuse the pun! This is the best audiobook I have ever listened to. Peter Jeffrey's reading is superb, bringing each character to life - from the trusted family butler Betteridge to the faintly ridiculous religous spunster Miss Clack. In terms of the story - it is superb piece of Victorian derring-do with a spirited young hero and heroine, a conspiracy involving mysterious foreigners, a lovelorn housemaid and opiuos use of laudanum. The writing is witty and sympathetic. The plot is complex, and though perhaps not as tightly plotted as a modern day thriller this would be enjoyed by lovers of detection fiction as well as fans of victorina.
Not only is this a compelling and masterful story, but the narrator Peter Jeffrey brings the book alive with a most accomplished reading. Each character and textual narrator is given a unique and highly sympathetic voice that captivates the listener with a flawlessness that can only add to the magic of the book itself.
I'm loving this. I read it years ago and didn't remember the details. The story is great, the reading fantastic. I'm about half way through, listening whilst commuting, and it has turned the drive into a real pleasure.
Wilkie Collins' best book, beautifully read by Peter Jeffrey. I had to look again at the description to double-check that it wasn't a dramatisation, so consistent and well-differentiated are his voices. A delight to listen to.
This was a lovely book and beautifully read with excellent characterisations. A good whodunnit with a bit of love interest. Very enjoyable.
Having been much impressed by Collins’s earlier ‘The Woman in White’, I was really looking forward to this one. Consequently, it’s disappointing to have to report being slightly underwhelmed. There’s nothing new about the first example of a literary genre not turning out to be its greatest, and this first-ever detective novel in English has faced some very stiff competition in the interim; when you’ve read the likes of Raymond Chandler or Dorothy L Sayers, Collins’s plot is always liable to feel a trifle thin. From a purely literary perspective, it's also hard not to recall how compelling Collins's earlier work was by comparison. But don’t be put off: 'The Moonstone' is an interesting curiosity and not a bad story in its own right; and it does benefit from Collins’s masterly knack of characterisation, including a detective character as colourful as any I can remember.
What also makes this production is Peter Jeffrey’s wonderful performance. I only remember him as a competent bit-part actor on TV and in the movies, but here he reads like a true Victorian, and effortlessly manages to capture a whole gallery of characters in a variety of regional and social accents.
On reflection, I’d recommend listening to Collins’s two most famous works in reverse order. That way, you can enjoy ‘The Moonstone’ without making unfavourable comparisons, and will still have the excellent ‘The Woman on White’ to look forward to.
I absolutely loved reading the Moonstone (in paper) years ago, and was excited to get the audiobook. It does not disappoint. The individual character of each persons narrative (different characters are used to relate the same story) is preserved perfectly by the use of different voices cleverly done, not over accented. Although this may be considered a classic, I would suggest really it is a comedy, lots of laugh out loud sentences while driving along in the car! Highly recommended.
This is the first audiobook I've listened to for a long time. In the past I'd always found them inferior to "the real thing" but this one has totally changed my mind. Wonderfully narrated in a way that transmits the pace and energy of the story, this audiobook is excellent. I don't know whether books written in the Victorian era especially lend themselves to this format, I suspect that they do. I'm going to test my theory with some Dickens next!
This recording of a fabulous classic is an absolute joy. Peter Jeffrey, the reader, is a superb interpreter of Collins' writing. I longed to hear more. Thank you Peter Jeffrey!
This is yet another wonderful audio book - Peter Jeffrey's brilliant reading of a book that keeps one guessing till the end gave me great enjoyment. I did not think there could be a narrator that could match Stephen Fry but I think Peter Jeffrey does!! Highly recommended
"An engrossing detective novel"
I was attracted to THE MOONSTONE after reading (Hearing) Wilkie Collins" THE WOMAN IN WHITE. What is fascinating to me is how a book written over 140 years ago can be read eaily without footnotes to explain the significance of the events of the time. The characters and the action brought me into that time period with ease.
I plan to sownload every Wilkie Collins book that is available in Audible.com
"Great book wonderfully read!!!"
I read this book years ago & loved it, but it is very long, so I have not read it since. I am VERY glad that I invested the time to listen to it now. The book is even better than I remember it. The author was a great talent & the reader's skill makes it a truely amazing listening experience. I whole-heartedly recommend this book & this reader to anyone who wants a quality, intelligent listen.
I probably never would have read this on paper - too old-fashioned, too long - but with it narrated (and done so well by Jeffrey!) I was able to hear the voices of the characters and be entertained by the different perspectives as each one tells the story from their point of view. I thought this was a masterfully crafted story, with parts that made me laugh out loud. Had to be able to concentrate when listening to keep track of the plot and characters.
"So perfect for these looonnnng winter evenings"
First, I'm a fan of Charles Dickens' novels, so historical fiction doesn't challenge me in the slightest, provided it has a plot. And The Moonstone has plot in spades, along with one of the most adorable characters I've ever encountered in all of literature (Gabriel Betteredge), and a wonderfully involved, somewhat gothic, mystery. If films like Gosford Park send you screaming, don't even dream of taking on this novel. But if you love English historical and gothic fiction, and enjoy an occasional mystery, this atmospheric gem will provide hours of guilty pleasure. Wilkie Collins was a contemporary (and friend) of Dickens, so expect similar pacing. Peter Jeffrey's narration was superb!
"One of my favorite Audiobooks"
The narrator was wonderful and the story was interesting and highly enjoyable. The plot might be a bit slow and verbose for some people, but if you like a well turned phrase and detailed character depictions, you will like this aspect as much as I did. The narrator's reading and distinctive voices for the different characters was outstanding.
"The First Detective Novel Ever Written: A Gem!"
Many consider the Moonstone to be the first detective novel ever written. And it's, in my opinion, one of the best. The plot is riveting, the story full of surprises. Even when Collins seems to be losing his way in a subplot, he always manage to enrich the main mystery: what happened to the Moonstone, a huge diamond discovered in India and sent to a young woman from her uncle. Almost as soon as she comes into possession of this magnificient jewel, it mysteriously disappears. What happened to the Moonstone, who took it, why and how? The how is especially puzzling. One thing is for sure, you will be entertained all the way to the final solution to this puzzle. It's a must read for true mystery fans.
The narration done by Peter Jeffrey is first class. I could listen to him telling stories all day long. Enjoy!
This is one of the best audible listens yet. I am very particular in choosing my audio books and it took me sometime to settle on this one - I don't regret it in the least. It was a marvelous and keen story. Very perceptive and subtly witty. It is not a fast paced or a short book, but I was happy to return to it every time I had the chance to listen. I am looking forward to reading other works by Wilkie Collins and I thought Peter Jeffery captured the emotion and flavor of the work beautifully.
"Delightful novel & first-rate narration"
Peter Jeffrey does the various voices with great skill and character. The humor of the novel comes through strongly. I wish Peter Jeffrey would do more narration, he's really fabulous.
"i like this book"
i enjoyed this book and the reader...i have read the hard copy before and wanted this to listen to while i knit...it did its job well! and his accent is so much better than mine!
"Good - if you are not in a hurry"
When I first started listening to the book I had to keep restarting it to get used to the accents and sentence structure. Even though this is written in English I felt challenged to understand the train of thought of the writer.
At about one third into the book the perspective changed. The story narration was taken over by another character and I realized that the first narrative was intentionally written in a "wandering" style to reflect the personality of that character.
Subsequent narratives were much easier to understand and to the point of the story. It is easy to see why one might stop listening to the first wordy and tedious narrative.
If you like stories to proceed at quick pace I would recommend the abridged version which I would expect to be more concise.
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