©1956 Gerald Durrell; (P)1994, 2007 BBC Audiobooks Ltd
"A lot of frolic, fun, and charming ribaldry, as well as the warm feeling of having been transported to a lovely spot where worry is unknown and anything is believable." (The New York Times)
The first of the Corfu trilogy. Arguably the most popular book Durrell has written, later filmed for TV. Full of funny anecdotes about his eccentric family and friends, with a good dose of animals too. Every time I listen to this I long to be in Corfu with all its inhabitants, human and otherwise as well as the beautiful backdrop of the island itself which Durrell so vividly describes. I listen to this audio book regularly and never tire of it. If this is the first Durrell book you listen to then it's a good start and a must for all those, who like me, love Durrell's books.
"Good but maybe I shouldn't have"
I downloaded this because I remembered how much I loved it and laughed out loud when I read it as a teenager (several centuries ago). I have to say that I was slightly disappointed by the second visit but I think this was to do with my SOH moving on. Years ago Larry seemed hilarious and enviably sardonic; now he seemed boringly selfish and even began to get on my nerves. That said there was still loads to enjoy and I listened with pleasure to the end. I loved revisiting Corfu in my mind and the best things are Gerry himself and his adventures with his animals. Nigel Davenport does a great job of narration. I specially admired his ability to characterise the Greeks without making them sound over-comic.
I've been hoping Audible would get around to publishing books by either Gerald Durrell or David Attenborough. Although this is my least favourite of the Durrell books I've read, it is still a brilliant, interesting and witty piece - so more please!
"an affectionate romp"
I really enjoyed this affectionate recollection of a childhood full of generous (well mostly), freindly excentrics, beautifully narrated by Nigel Davenport. I felt bereft when it was over :(
This was one of my favourite books as a girl and I was so pleased that my daughter loved it as well. This version is beautifully read and listening to it is a delight. Take it as a standalone experience and don't try to read up on Durrell's biography, or this one may be spoilt for you. Hint - it's not all strictly accurate.
"What do you mean you've never read it?"
Bought this as I had read it as a young man (16 or 17) and thoroughly enjoyed it. I liked the narration and the story is funny and also touching in places. A recommended read for teenagers and young adults and for nostalgia for those of us who are slightly older. A classic! Watch out for those Magenpies though!
"I'm glad I waited"
Here's a book that presented itself to me over and over throughout my years yet somehow I never found it the moment to read until now. The narration is superb, the characters funny and warm and its a total escape back to a simpler pre-war idyll. I'm glad I came to it as an audiobook because the characterisation and the measured approach forces one to listen and experience it at the correct pace and to revel in the warm breezes that stir the pages. I have decided to postpone listening to the further books because this one was so complete and satisfying on its own that I don't want to dilute the experience. Most enjoyable like a glass of ouzo on a hot summers day..
I was looking for a funny book to cheer me up, and this didn't disappoint! So funny and warm, I don't think you'd even need to be an animal lover to appreciate this, the humour is so palpable. I'll definitely be seeking out the other Durrell audiobooks. "Bum-trinket" is my family's new favourite word!
"A Modern Classic"
This book captures the curiosity of youth, the beauty of nature and the eccentricities of a family which have the most wonderful character traits I have come across in a long time. The Island of Corfu is captured by Durrell in a charming, endearing & naive way which would make anyone long for any amount of time in this rural idyll.
Wonderfully read by Nigel Davenport who truly embodies the author's persona.
"Slice of happiness"
Who could not be enchanted by this tale of an animal loving boy in Corfu with his nutty family. Funny and enchanting. You don't want it to end. Something to settle down to on a long journey.
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