Winner: Audiobook of the Year - Specsavers National Book Awards 2012
The day her children leave home, Eva climbs into bed and stays there. She's had enough - of her kids' carelessness, her husband's thoughtlessness and of the world's general indifference. Brian can't believe his wife is doing this. Who is going to make dinner? But Eva won't budge; and soon she realises to her horror that everyone has been taking her for granted - including herself.
©2012 Lily Broadway Productions Ltd (P)2012 W F Howes Ltd
Eva’s obnoxious cheating husband and emotionally retarded twins have taken her for granted throughout her married life, so when the kids leave for University, she takes to her bed. This story tells of her transformation and the characters that come into her life after she starts to live in her bedroom. I really enjoyed this audio book, as I could really identify with the main character Eva. Some of the dialogue really hit home, as I too am around the same age as the main character, have a girl and boy and a (ex) husband who was a waste of space!
But what slightly spoiled it for me was Caroline Quentin’s ridiculous accent for some of the characters, particularly Ruby, Eva’s Mum. I actually found myself mocking the reader back as some of the pronunciation was so ludicrous (supposedly a Leicester accent?)
However, I would still recommend any woman, or man, come to that, of a certain age to listen to this book as much of it will hit home. Although the theme is slightly melancholy, there are loads of laugh out loud moments and hilarious situations.
I really enjoyed the first half of the book, the plot was a bit unbelievable, but the characters made it seem possible. However, disappointingly it all started to unravel in the final third and became too far fetched.
Loved 95% of Caroline Quintens narration, but just every so often there was a screech or shout that really peirced the eardrums.
In summary, a light-hearted listen, but not Adrian Mole standard.
The blurb sounds good but the book doesn't live up to it. Firstly I have to tell you how annoying the narration was. I hated everyone's accents and it seemed that the narrator was screaming throughout the book. It is simply horrible. Make sure you listen to the sample so you can make your own decision. In the end I gave up listening and decided to read it. It made it much better but I had the awful narrators take on the characters in my head. The book starts off well and the characters were interesting but about half way through you start to wonder "Where is this going?" and it simply goes down hill. What seems like a funny book with a middle aged women take on life takes a silly turn. Disappointing.
I've always enjoyed Sue Townsend's books but this book seems to have no real point and none of the characters are likeable (maybe that is the point). It meanders without any real plot progression and comes across as quite bitter, it doesn't have the playfulness of the likes of Adrian Mole but just wallows in self-absorbed unpleasant characters. If this was by anyone else then I wouldn't have stuck with it at all and I'd suggest you skip it as well.
Sue Townsend, genius author of the Adrian Mole series, tackles depression and loss of direction with her usual skill and aplomb.
I defy anybody reading this novel to proceed until the end without laughing out loud and also wiping away tears.
S.T. keep writing thought provoking books, I am a committed fan!
When I saw the blurb for this book, I thought it sounded like an interesting idea and expected a bit of a commentary on modern stresses and how it can compel people to give up altogether or avoid their problems. There is so much potential here for an engaging, moving, and humourous story - Instead, I got a woman going to bed for a year for no reason whatsoever, in a badly-paced, unoriginal, shallow story with no understanding of the human issues involved. The protagonists were not only unlikeable but uninteresting, and the so-called "humour" was juvenile, unfunny, and often bad taste. There is a whole section purely about body waste and the woman's crusade to find someone to get rid of her excretions in bags because she doesn't want to go to the bathroom anymore! No reason given. There is no indication of depression mental illness or bad experiences to explain her reluctance. She simple appears to be a spoiled brat.
This brings me to my major grievance with the novel: because of the lack of reasonable explanation for Eva's taking to her bed, the whole premise serves as a great big slap in the face to those, like myself, who are condemned by ill health to spend much of their lives in bed. I would LOVE to be able to do more; to go to the supermarket on my own, to get married and have children and a normal life, as Eva had beforehand. Seeing this character wilfully making everyone run around after her when there appears to be nothing wrong with her made me so angry I could happily have throttled her, when I often make myself ill trying to do more than I should so I'm not a burden to others. And yes, I have suffered from serious depression, and believe me, it is nothing like this. If depression is meant to be the cause for her choices, then the portrayal is sadly lacking.
I actually couldn't finish; I kept listening for as long as I could in the hopes that Eva would learn a lesson or that the characters would grow from the experience, but I couldn't stand it
I found this book to be unfunny and very tedious. I did not like any of the characters in the book, Eva herself was selfish and unlikeable, i couldnt sympathise with her descisions and the twins were childish and void of any discernible qualities.
I persevered but this was definately not for me.
The reading of the sotry by Caroline Quentin was great though. her voice is very easy to listen to.
very soothing to listen too, i found myself wandering off working away without actually paying any attention to the story itself.
A suprisingly enjoyable tale that was well read. It took me a little time to get used to Caroline Quentin's delivery which I found a bit full on at the start. As the story went on however, I realised it was pitched perfectly. Her Leicester accent sounded spot on to me (as a fairly frequent visitor the city for work). Good idea, well exectuted.
This book drove me mad. It just rambled on and on. I just couldn't get into all the different characters that kept dipping in and out the book. And I wanted to tell the lady to get out of the bed and what a waste of a life! I also got fed up with Caroline Quentin who talks in a baby voice all the time. I usually try to finish my books but I just couldn't with this!
The narrator is beyond annoying. Her voice is shrill most of the time.
I couldn't concentrate on the story at all. The voice was distracting.
I can only imagine another narrator would have improved the telling. It's hard to know where to start in fixing this.
Anger, frustration and annoyance. I had to turn it off.
It's a shame that the constant yelling in this book and the narration has taken away from what I think might have been a good story, but I'll never know because I can't get past the terrible job.
"Loved Loved Loved this book!"
Yes, I loved it - I missed the characters when I was not listening to this book...could not wait to get into my car and turn on the audible download.
That is hard to say as I am new to listening to my books and the whole experience of listening to a book makes it much more 'visual' for me...I would need to listen to more books before I can compare.
Any scene with the 'girlfriend' of the husband.
The tree being chopped down was very moving...I felt so sorry for her.
I have never laughed so much during any book - ever. At times, I hit rewind just so that I could re-listen and laugh out loud again.
I listened while I was driving, I listened while I was cooking, I listened at every possible opportunity I could because I just couldn’t get enough of this intriguingly hilarious story.
Not to mention how absolutely perfect Caroline Quentin is as a narrator!
A true WINNER, if I could rate this book 7 out of 5, I would.
"Enjoyable listen, excellent narration!"
No. 1 but have only listened to 3 so far!
Ending was too abrupt and unresolved for me
Loved it, voices were clear and inflections were excellent
Thoroughly enjoyable listen although the ending spoiled it a little for me. Would definitely recommend it regardless :)
"Masterful Narration of a great book"
I absolutely adored this book, with its gallery of colourful characters, and laugh out loud humour.The narration was superb. Caroline Quentin is fantastic, and just has to narrate a lot more books for Audible!..
The fact that Eva, got away with staying in bed, and how the story evolved around the situation is great story-telling. Most married mothers will relate to all of Eva's decisions.
Looking forward, as always, to the next Sue Townsend Audible book.
"Loved Caroline Quentin narrating!"
Entertaining, thought provoking and interesting.
The ending was the only downfall for me - it just seemed to fade out without a concrete ending.
She has a great voice for audio books and a nice subtle variation of voice for the different characters.
When Eva first went to bed. (Half her luck i was thinking!)
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