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Summary

Brought to you by Penguin.   

This Penguin Classic is performed by Kirsty Besterman, an experienced TV and theatre actress known for her leading role as Lady Macbeth in the National Theatre Tour, as well as a number of roles with Shakespeare's Globe and the RSC.

It's not easy being a Provincial Lady in Devonshire in the 1920s, juggling a grumpy husband, mischievous children and a host of domestic dilemmas - from rice mould to a petulant cook. But this Provincial Lady will not be defeated; not by wayward flower bulbs, not by unexpected houseguests, not even by the Blitz. She will continue to preside over the W.I., endure rain-drenched family picnics and succeed as a published author, all the while tending to her strawberries.   

The Diary of a Provincial Lady is a brilliantly observed comic novel, as funny and fresh today as when it was first written.

Public Domain (P)2019 Penguin Audio

What listeners say about The Diary of a Provincial Lady

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Has a charm!

Yes this certainly has a period charm and is full of historical interest to that time. And undoubtedly is an ideal listen for someone convalescing or if one is feeling a little fragile and one needs a comforting listen. But my first major gripe is that the narrator who is portraying a woman of a particular rank and class consistently mispronounces words. Maybe the producer should be blamed for not correcting her either way it's very jarring to hear plaid pronounced as played which maybe sounds posher to someone's idea or Aldous as Ald you owse. I shall not give more examples but leave that to the listener. There is a Mitford-esque charm but lacks the wit and depth. And unfortunately listening to the Diary books as a collection it soon becomes very transparent the constant repetition of the same ideas over and over again e.g. the Vicar's wife asking for ridiculous items and or favours to be done. So perhaps might be better to do in parts. Ultimately this is certainly a matter of taste and preference and for me was not hilarious or even mildly funny. And although compared to P G Wodehouse Jerome K Jerome and Diary of a Nobody I find this incomprehensible as those to me are laugh out loud funny but this not so for me.

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Thoroughly enjoyable

What a wonderful book. I could relate to so many of the Provincial Lady’s worries and joys, and laughed out loud listening to her tales. It is incredible to think how modern and relevant her musings are 80 years on. Loved it and didn’t want it to end.