V. Hannides

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Good book, brilliantly read.

5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 25-09-10

I'm a great fan of Andrew Taylor and although his writing varies from book to book i've never been disappointed and this book proves no exception. Taylor is exceptional at bringing to life the period he is is writing about whether it be 1950's/60's or as in this case the late 18th Century. The story is further enhanced by the excellent narration of John Telfer. I wouldn't hesitate to recomend this book, in fact i'm going to buy it in paperback for my sisters birthday.

10 people found this helpful

***May contain Spoilers ! ***

2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 30-05-10

I bought this as I had really enjoyed Kostova's 'The Historian' and the subject of art is something I am interested in.
Unfortunately I found The Swan Thieves tedious, I had no sympathy towards any of the characters.
The whole story seemed to be finding out who the mysterious subject of Robert Oliver's paintings was, to me this was obvious from early on yet the main character a psychiatrist Andrew Marlow, who had all the info the reader had, failed to work it out and just spent all his time talking to people close to Oliver hoping to find the answer. These included Oliver's ex wife Kate and his girlfriend Mary, who although had gone out of her way to meet Marlow and talk to him then only felt able to write episodic letters to him, which unfolded her whole life history to him including a description of using a tampon (!). To be fair the story wasn't helped by the narrating, the only voice I enjoyed listening too was 'Mary', and 'Beatrice' just sounded like someone from 'Ello 'Ello. There were times when the timeline/voice changed and I found myself physically groaning. Maybe if I had read rather than listened to the book I would have enjoyed it more, but I doubt it. In fact I am over half way through and have decided to give up, something I haven't as yet done on an audio book, but have decided life is too short !

9 people found this helpful