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Summary

This is Jane Austen's lighthearted lesson in what you get for reading too many gothic novels. It is a mark of the astonishing talent of the woman, however, that even a flippant swipe at the trashy reading of the day turned out to be an elegant if extremely funny classic.

Catherine Morland is another one of those Austen girls who, in spite of her gloriously ironic portrait as a romantic heroine in training, ends up being someone whose story you'd follow to the end of the world, or at least until the end of the book. And the villains and suitors of the piece somehow acquire those extra 16 layers that Austen cannot help herself from writing.

This is as blithe and merry a piece of gothic horror as you’ll get, and at the same time as you're grinning at the terrifying manuscript Catherine finds in her bedroom turning out to be the laundry lists, you’ll be delighting in the sheer brilliance of the first of Jane Austen's great novels.

Public Domain (P)2008 Silksoundbooks Limited

What listeners say about Northanger Abbey

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Bath as a marriage market...

Catherine Morland, the daughter of a clergyman, the fourth in a total of ten children, is seventeen years old and lives in Fullerton, a village in Wiltshire. She makes her first visit to Bath with Mr and Mrs Allens, her parents' friends and neighbors...
How she makes new acquaintances and gets a suiter, and how it comes to the usual conclusion after some adventures, is all the action to be expected.
The reading is superb: The dialogues are easy to follow as Lynn Redgrave rendering of the different voices is perfectly executed and convincing.

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  • ELO417
  • 18-04-17

Lynne Redgrave slays!

She does such an amazing job with both the make and female voices. Mr. Thorpe was my favorite of her voices (even though he's an abominable character)!

5 people found this helpful

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  • Sara Moore
  • 21-09-16

Redgrave's spirited voice enlivens the reading.

Enjoyed Austen's early voice, particularly in her witty delivery. Vanessa Redgrave's performance swept me away.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Eric
  • 03-12-17

Love me some Jane!

Jane Austen has been a favorite author of mine since I was in junior high! this is a great narration of the unabridged version. The narrator does a wonderful job altering her voice for characters and bringing you into the story!

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  • tammy
  • 29-02-16

Disappointed

As a huge fan of Jane Austin's Pride and Prejudice I was very disappointed with Northanger Abbey. Lynn Redgrave gave an incredible performance. I would surely read another book with her narration . But the storyline of this book kept me waiting and hoping for a more captivating storyline.

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  • Rebekah
  • 02-04-21

Terrible ( one of Jane Austens worst books)

it was a struggle to listen to the first 6 chapters 😪. I deleted it from my library. it was hard to keep the story line in check and follow the story. maybe it was the narrator? it was bad very bad 👎😔 and I love Jane Austen.

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  • Tracy White
  • 13-09-20

Wonderful narration

I had never heard of this work of Jane Austin but thoroughly enjoyed it. A bit wordy, but a good story.

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  • Sally H.
  • 09-09-20

Sorry but Ms. Redgrave is not up to this

I ordered this to compare to the Anna Lea adaptation read by Emma Thompson with a supporting cast which is FABULOUS! I've probably listened to that version more times than I know. Ms. Redgrave is wonderful when reading as the narrator but she falls short when she is speaking as one of the characters. Once I realized that Kathryn and Mrs. Allen sound almost the same and when she was "Henry Tilney" and sounded like an old man as this character I had to stop. I'll be requesting a return. If you haven't listened to Anna Lea's rendition you simply must purchase it right now.

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  • Lisa S.
  • 19-07-20

My least favorite Jane Austen book.

Different in style than Austen's other books, and somewhat hard to follow. Not my favorite.

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  • Chris
  • 26-03-20

Fantastic narration!

Ms. Redgrave really hit the right tone for this delightful novel. I was very impressed with the different voices-- distinct and consistent. The male voices were very well done.

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  • Ursa Auberon
  • 11-04-19

Classic story, well-performed

Had to read for college, but I ended up really enjoying it! The characters are a bit odd, but just like with any Austen the good guys are endearing and you end up rooting for them all. I especially appreciate the narrator, though, because her inflections fit perfectly with the emotion and attitude of each character.