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Summary

A ghost story with a difference from the World Fantasy and multiple British Fantasy Award-winning author of Some Kind of Fairy Tale.

It is the summer of 1976, the hottest since records began, and a young man leaves behind his student days and learns how to grow up. A first job in a holiday camp beckons. But with political and racial tensions simmering under the cloudless summer skies there is not much fun to be had. And soon there is a terrible price to be paid for his new found freedom and independence. A price that will come back to haunt him, even in the bright sunlight of summer.

As with Some Kind of Fairy Tale, Graham Joyce has crafted a deceptively simple tale of great power. With beautiful prose, wonderful characters and a perfect evocation of time and place this is a novel that transcends the boundaries between the everyday and the supernatural while celebrating the power of both.

Read by Jonathan Keeble. Jonathan combines his audio work with a busy theatre and TV career. He is very proud to have appeared more times (11) at Manchester's prestigious Royal Exchange Theatre than any one else of his age. He has featured in over 500 radio plays for the BBC appearing in everything from Shakespeare to Sherlock Holmes to Dr Who and is also the evil Owen in The Archers. Much in demand for his voicework, this ranges from playing Sir Christopher Wren in St. Paul's Cathedral to The Angel of Death in the film Hellboy 2, with stops at all points in between. An award-winning reader, Jonathan has recorded over 100 audiobooks.

©2013 Graham Joyce (P)2013 Orion Publishing Group

What members say

Average customer ratings

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Good, but...

... Not quite what I was expecting.

I absolutely loved 'some kind of fairy story' and wanted to read more of Joyce's work. This book jumped out at me due to excellent reader reviews. I like Joyce's quirky tales, and did enjoy this, but I was expecting something a bit more horrifying due to reviews of this 'scary' ghost story. Maybe it's just me, but I didn't find it remotely scary. I just spent most of the book waiting to be made to jump, but in my opinion it's not that type of story. It is atmospheric, idiosyncratic, sympathetic and worth reading. Just don't expect to jump out of your skin!

I would say it's a quirky tale rather than a ghost story, but give it a go and see what you think!

The narrator was fabulous - really brought the story alive with all his voices. I will look out for his reading in future, for sure!

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Enjoyed this. Nostalgic and the reader's interpretation of the characters was very good

I remember being on holiday when there was a plague of ladybirds so the references to this in the story evoked memories of this for me. The characters in this tale were brought to life very effectively by the reader; especially Nobby. I have read this author before and I find that his stories make a unobtrusive change to my normal genre. Not edge of your seat stuff but quietly satisfying with all the questions resolved by the end.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

All over the place

The story did not go in to any invigorating storyline. The story was very much everywhere and was not gripping in the slightest.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Essential read for anyone who worked summer holiday camps

My third Graham Joyce novel and this is as good as some kind of fairy tale and the tooth fairy. Joyce is so accurate with his depiction of life working the summer British sea side camps ( I did my stint in the mid 80 s), I was convinced he must have done so himself.

I loved this. I've read in the winter but it's a perfect summer holiday read. Not at all scary, just a wonderful story.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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What a stunning writer

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Definitely. Quietly compelling. Evocative and honest, this is a novel of memory and intense emotion.

What did you like best about this story?

The hot summer of 1976 beautifully drawn and the intriguing ghost story with a twist.

What about Jonathan Keeble’s performance did you like?

Excellent. He was the perfect narrator, especially Nobby,

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Best enjoyed over a few days to make the pleasure last.

Any additional comments?

Highly recommended like all Graham Joyce's beautiful books.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

The late great Graham Joyce.

Would you consider the audio edition of The Year of the Ladybird to be better than the print version?

A beautiful, strange, frightening tale from one of England's most under-appreciated writers.

What did you like best about this story?

Very well written. Sense of time and place.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

disappointing

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

Yes I would recommend it if the person wanted some fairly lightweight reading It is well written and well read but the story lacks mystery and is predictable. After "Some kind of majic" I had expected a more imaginative story line.

What three words best describe Jonathan Keeble’s voice?

Adequate, not good for female voice. Definite difference for each character.

If this book were a film would you go see it?

No

Any additional comments?

None.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Robert
  • United Kingdom
  • 24-12-13

A rollercoaster to no-where

I really like Graham Joyce' stye of writing and this book has a great pace and mounting tension. The story is sometimes predictable and sometimes not but I felt just peterd out at the end and was a little disappointing.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

hello campers

What made the experience of listening to The Year of the Ladybird the most enjoyable?

the good performance by jonathan keeble

What did you like best about this story?

the experience of the student being a green coat,

Which scene did you most enjoy?

I enjoyed the book as a whole.

Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

I was very moved by one scene involving a little boy. I don't want to give the plot line away.

Any additional comments?

I really enjoyed the book as I had regular holidays in the parts of Skegness depicted in the book.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful