The unabridged, downloadable audiobook of Nick Hornby's touching tale Juliet, Naked, read by Jennifer Wiltsie, Bill Irwin and Ben Miles.
Annie's put fifteen years into safe, slightly obsessive Duncan, and now she'd like her money back, please. It's time to move on. But she lives in Gooleness, the north's answer to a question nobody asked. Is she really going to find real, proper, fell-it-deep-down-in-your-boots love on a damp and windy seafront? Or perhaps she should follow her heart and pursue Tucker, the reclusive American rock star, who keeps emailing her his smart advice.
But between Annie and her second chance lie a few obstacles. There's Malcolm, the world's most judgemental therapist, and Barnesy, the north's most extrovert dancer. There's what men and women will do and won't do for love. And, of course, there's Tucker...
Hilarious and tender, this bestselling novel will move you in ways both profound and surprising. It's Nick Hornby at his brilliant best. If you like David Nicholls, David Sedaris and Jonathan Coe you will love this book.
©2009 Nick Hornby; (P)2009 Penguin Audio, a member of Penguin Group (USA), Inc., and Penguin Books Ltd
"He should write for England." (Observer)
"Hornby writes with a funny, fresh voice which skewers male and female foibles with hilarious accuracy." (Guardian)
"Hornby is a fine writer, swift and pointed, with a lighter more mischevious heart than he lets on, and more sympathy for the devil than he admits to." (New York magazine)
"Hornby's best novel to date" (Spectator)
"Sharply funny, touching" (Daily Telegraph)
The story is fun and an interesting look at obsession, which Hornby understands all too well. However I had to warn anyone considering downloading the audio that the narration is split over three voices.
They all fit the characters really well that isn't the problem. The issue comes with the American narrator who ends up having to provide voices for the two English characters during dialogue. He not only has them pronouncing words incorrectly (the first syllable of yoghurt made to rhyme with go that kind of thing) but the attempt at an English accent is so woeful. The characters end up sounding like Australians who've lived in South Africa for many years.
It makes listening a dire and painful experience.
I thought this was one of Nick Hornby's best and the audio book is well performed and well paced.
Nick's ongoing exploration of the male psyche is undertaken this time from a womans perspective. The premise of the story is that her live in partner is one of a selct group of similar obsessives who worship a reclusive ex rock star. When he releases a new album she dares criticise it on the web but, to her surprise, finds that the one person who agrees with her views is the rock star himself. A relationship is born.
The themes in Hornby's work often revolve around the male need to immerse themselves and over analyse. This comes out in various ways as diverse as record collecting, football supporting and, in this case, an ego driven need to be "experts" and completists.
Nick's insights are often painfully accurate.
I write this on the eve of the election and in the sure and certain knowledge that whichever party wins the most seats there are difficult times ahead. Against that background I recommend this book as a welcome ray of sunshine; a small, human tale of middle age frustrations; male obsessions and the ability to change for the better.
The book is funny, heart-warming and very well read (especially by Jennifer Wiltsie). If you enjoyed 'One Day' or 'Salmon Fishing in the Yemen' or most Richard Curtis comedies then this is well worth getting.
I've read most of Hornby's other books and thought I'd get this download for my commute to work. Have to say that I've never been happier in the traffic. It's insightful, interesting, nostalgic and incredibly witty. If you like to be entertained, you'll love this book.
This was one of my first listens on audible and I was very pleased with my choice. I had a great time listening to this bok in the gym, whilst commuting and even doing chores at home. Time flew.. The narration is absolutely fantastic. If you like Nick Hornby, you will love listening to this book.
I enjoyed this unabridged version as we all know we dont want good stories to end.
This is the story of a couple who live in a small fictional northern seaside town. One idolises a fictional reclusive singer songwriter but the other only likes him.
When the songwriter release an album of demos from his most successful album Juliet. Things happen as he thinks the new Juliet,Naked is the best album ever but she hates it.
She becomes friends with the singer songwriter while all there lives are falling apart.
Its a story of musical snobbery similar to high fidelity written as only Nick Hornby could
Nick Hornby skewers fandom and the over praising of clay footed artists, and never once makes me think that art isn't important and overwhelming and beautiful. Trusting tellers not tales, and still allowing your idols to be real and human and fallible. There's lots of love in this book, particularly for the emotional charge of rock'n'roll.
Three voices tell the story. The woman's voice, the voice of Annie, is Jennifer Wiltse, and she is immaculate. Ben Chaplin doesn't make Duncan as whiny a nerd as he might, and he's a bit posh for a lecturer in a college in Skegness-cum-Goole, but he's fine, and very easy to listen to. The American voice, Bill Irwin, is perfectly fine when he's being American, but he should be forcibly restrained from ever again attempting an English accent.
I love this - what a great cast of characters, from the obsessed know-it-all Duncan to the 'northern soul' dancer Barnsie, everyone is believable -people you feel like you might have met (or tried to avoid). I've listened to this audio CD so many times, it's like a bit of comfort food for when I need a lift. If you ever start to become so taken with someone who is or was famous, to the extent that you might appear to know more about them then they do themselves, then you need to have a listen to Juliet Naked and get a grip!
The story was not outstanding but would have read better without this irritating distraction.
One narrator with the same accent would have worked better, rather than one lady, one English voice and one American - all with different accents for the same characters.
Duncan, his girlfriend.......,
I usually enjoy NIck Hornby and had been warned this was not one of his best but it really didn't deserve any accolades. It had moments of promise but was not up to his usual standard. Very disappointed but I think it was made so much worse with the three different voices.
"Awesome reading (listening)"
Nobody has the skill like Nick Hornby to describe normal people and their un-normalities. It's like he has a deep respect for the very human stuff. Really enjoyed this story, its characters and the language. Made me laugh out loud, as well as think about the concept of wasting time.
Hornby is a first-class writer and this book didn't disappoint. It was sweet and wry and full of lots of humor - a lot of it based on UK/US differences. Some other reviewers said they thought the book lost its way a little when Tucker appeared, but I thought it continued to be interesting as it explored his life. I laughed out loud a couple of time and have listened to the book twice. Love it!
"Not bedside reading"
I was disappointed in this book. I loved About a Boy but this book just felt like a few rewoven threads in similar shades of beige for boredom, mustard yellow for self-deception and pretense and amber for some glimpses of real people set in stone. I finished the book still hoping, but deleted it off my kindle feeling sludgy.
The story starts a little slow and you might start to think the characters are too boring to bother with - this changes. Well worth a listen.
"Very funny & perfectly narrated"
This is the second Nick Hornby audiobook I have listened to (the other was 'Slam') and I have absolutely loved both. The narration here is flawless and suits the novel perfectly. This audiobook lived up to what I have come to expect from Nick Hornby - funny, witty, sad and very engaging.
"Good. Not Great."
I've read a few Nick Hornby books and enjoyed them all. I guess that I was expecting more from this one. The readers were great though. It certainly made a long drive a lot easier.
This smart, funny novel is really brought to life by a team of three fantastic narrators. Horby creates characters you recognize instantly (for example, the obsessed geek-fan engaged in endless online analysis with twelve other obsessed geek-fans), but his language is so fresh and vivid and amusing that you don't really know where the story is going, and even when you do have a pretty good idea where it's going, you're surprised by how he gets there or by what you notice along the way. I absolutely loved the narration -- the narrators seemed perfectly matched to the characters and were dynamic and completely engaging.
"One of the best"
Great narrators and excellent story. It is a book I would most probably never read in hard copy (plus I am not a big fan of Nick Hornby) but after a bit of a slow start I was hooked. It was such a pleasure to listen to. Sort of deep, but in a positive way. Light read, but not stupid. Highly recommended.
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