A stranger enters the inner sanctum of the Ashby family posing as Patrick Ashby, the heir to the family's sizeable fortune. The stranger, Brat Farrar, has been carefully coached on Patrick's mannerisms, appearance and every significant detail of Patrick's early life, up to his 13th year when he disappeared and was thought to have drowned himself. It seems as if Brat is going to pull off this most incredible deception until old secrets emerge that threaten to jeopardise the imposter's plan and his very life.
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At last! What a joy to find the real Josephine Tey books on Audible. And Bratt Farrar is one of her best. In theory, one ought to thoroughly dislike a young man who sets out to deceive, but Bratt is such a sympathetic character that the listener can't help but be drawn into his story, and that of the family who welcome him 'home'. Even though I had read the book and knew the outcome, it was a real pleasure to hear it read aloud, and Carole Boyd makes an excellent job of it. Please, Audible, do let's have all of Josephine Tey's books made available.
I have loved this book since I first read it in my teens and that was a long time ago! I was delighted to find this audio version, read by the excellent Carole Boyd. My pleasure in following the ramifications in the Ashby family when their nephew/brother, thought to have killed himself when young, turns up again just before he is due to come into his inheritance was undimmed.
Yes, I would recommend this audiobook to a friend, because it takes the 'missing heir' trope to yet another level. As a listener, you think the imposter is cheating the family of what belongs to it; however, it is because of his imposture that a crime is revealed and a criminal punished.
Aunt Evie--there was something very humane and loving about her.
No, I don't think I have--but I will look out for them.
When Evie and Charles discover/uncover Brat's identity.
...otherwise an excellent mystery. I just can't stand how often the author has characters who are meant to be sympathetic protagonists use the word "moron", frankly. I grit my teeth every time I hear it. I get that ableist language as insults were more or less the norm for her generation and unexamined as such, but that doesn't make it at all pleasant to hear in this century. The sub-plot involving Sheila Parslow & the characters' attitudes toward her comparative promiscuity also makes me cringe.
Other than that, I enjoy re-reading this particular mystery in various forms. I don't think I shall ever be able to forget the solution, so I re-read with 20-20 hindsight every time, but the story is just as interesting and nuanced when you already know the ending as it is when you know nothing about it - and with such hindsight the author's subtle but clear foreshadowing is easy to discover and to enjoy. I can assure you of that much!
"Great all around"
I'm a big Josephine Tey fan, and I'm picky about narrators. This was my first Carole Boyd listen, and now I'm hooked. She's just great. Enough variations in voicing to keep the characters identifiable, but no stagey acting to distract from Tey's precise and wonderful story. If you like British mysteries and good narrators, you can't go wrong here.
"Another riveting story by Josephine Tey"
As expected, Josephine Tey delivers a compelling, absorbing tale that draws one in and doesn't let go. After reading her "Daughter of Time," I knew to expect the highest quality of literate writing and at the same time a delicious, entertaining read. Once again, I was in her power for the whole time of listening to the book. The reader and the production were excellent.
"A dearly-loved, favorite to read and reread."
This story takes the classic change-of-identity plot and turns it on its head. Set on a horse farm in the English Midlands, Brat Farrar takes full advantage of the beautiful scenery and a family of wonderfully individual characters, with a tragic mystery in its past and a warm and human faith in a future. Sounds sappy, but it carries the reader along, revealing the hidden facts and surprising us all in the process. Simply a lovely, lovely book which makes this reader, at least, wish I had been part of the Ashby family.
"The Impostor Mystery"
This was a unique story line for a mystery, involving an impostor who finds he really does belong. I thought the characters were well developed, and were not just black and white good guys and bad guys.
In the beginning, I was reminded of The Return of Martin Guerre, but this story takes a more positive turn. Anglophiles will probably think of Perkin Warbeck, a famous and real impostor. I am also reminded of the work of Alexandre Dumas: yes, it might be a bit improbable in places, but the story kept me intrigued.
She did a good job of presenting and keeping each character unique.
I never have time to listen to one book all at once, but I enjoyed getting back to this story each time. I was impressed that Josephine Tey had interwoven this story intricately together.
"Very British, very entertaining"
A perfect example of a British mystery. A bit more somber than an Agatha Christie, less of mystery than a character-driven narrative. There is a lot about horses, raising and riding, which was not interesting me but was the backdrop for the milieu in which the story takes place. The narrator was excellent.
"A Clever Classic"
Lovely narration, but even in print this would have been an absolute pleasure to read. A cosy crime, that all of a sudden isn't all that "cosy" anymore. Wonderful character descriptions and a time and place you want to be transported to. Great!
The narration of this book was particulary good.
I must admit I sort of knew the twist coming....but not exactly so. Still it was most enjoyable.
It's difficult to put into wors...just that she did all parts so well and I would forget she was reading and be in the book.
I don't often listen to a book more than once.
Josephine Tey is new to me. I simply enjoy the lifestyle and character descriptions
The narration seemed to fit perfectly with the writing style of the author.
"One of the best audible books ever"
Loved the story, loved the presentation. This is the first thing I've read by Tey and plan to listen/read the rest. After I finished the book I listened a second time- I've never done that before.
"Best book in years"
Loved it. Fascinating plot. Engaging characters. I listen to dozens of books each year and this was by far the best in years. Looking forward to more by the same author.
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