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Swing Time

Narrated by: Pippa Bennett-Warner
Length: 13 hrs and 44 mins
4 out of 5 stars (603 ratings)
Regular price: £23.99
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Summary

Dazzlingly energetic and deeply human, Swing Time is a story about friendship and music and true identity, how they shape us and how we can survive them. Moving from Northwest London to West Africa, it is an exuberant dance to the music of time.

Two brown girls dream of being dancers - but only one, Tracey, has talent. The other has ideas: about rhythm and time, about black bodies and black music, what constitutes a tribe or makes a person truly free. It's a close but complicated childhood friendship that ends abruptly in their early 20s, never to be revisited but never quite forgotten, either....

©2016 Zadie Smith (P)2016 Penguin Books Ltd.

What members say

Average customer ratings

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

Smith's best yet with perfect narrator

I choose Swing Time because all my friends were raving about it. They were right! This is a gripping, perfectly-paced read which explores our main character's challenging relationships with her mother, employer and - above all - her childhood best friend. There is a toxic dimension to all these key female relationships but Smith excels in showing the complicity and complexity of each. Bennett-Warner provides the perfect reading (especially of our insecure main character) and I hope this will be the first of many recordings for audible.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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

Superb performance

Zadie Smith's novel absolutely brought alive by this superb reading of Swing Time. Each character distinct and memorable. Stellar work by Pippa Bennett-Warner. A terrific listening experience.

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
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    5 out of 5 stars

Couldn't stop reading

Loved the story, the subtlety of the characterisations and thoughtful insights into race celebrity, power of money. I think this is Zadie Smith's best book.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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

Tailed off into a confusing narrative

Would you try another book written by Zadie Smith or narrated by Pippa Bennett-Warner?

The narration was fine.

Any additional comments?

The story jumped around a lot and I didn't find the characters likeable. Disappointing.

3 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Not convincing

After reading White Teeth by Zadie Smith my expectations were high, however this book didn't cut it for me. I found the story not very interesting.. Maybe I will give it a go in a while..

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Masterful

The story is outstanding yet uncomfortably close to home and well observed.
Writing is brilliant and Bennett Warner’s performance is both compelling and skilful.

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars

Disappointed

Such a let down, no real substance. Fewer words with developed characters and some plot needed here.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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excellent narrator and wonderful story

narrator was so good. really giving life to the characters. the story was great too. gently unpicking the subtleties of childhood friendships

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Just brilliant

Acute observations that all can relate to here, characterisation so visual, really didn't want the story to end, sad but true to life events, narrated brilliantly, great read.

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

begins OK, but gets really dull.

This has a few funny observations of life in the 70S / 80S , bit the story is weak, and some chapters too dull to bother with. The characters were pretty much 1dimensional.
boring
don't waste a credit on it

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • FRANCINE TAFFIN
  • 07-01-17

A good story, shame about the narrator

Zadie Smith has not disappointed. I wouldn't have imagined following a main character (the narrator) that seems so clueless about the world around her, be it her family, her boss, the African village where she spends weeks, or her erstwhile bff Tracey, but Smith manages to get us to tag along. And at the end of the story, she does seem to connect with reality at last!

What really spoiled my enjoyment was the reader, with her soporific tone. But that wasn't the worst. I just wish she'd refrained from doing accents, they just sounded so off and daft.