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The Girl Who Fell from the Sky

Narrated by: Anna Bentinck
Length: 11 hrs and 32 mins
Categories: Fiction, Literary
4 out of 5 stars (822 ratings)

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Summary

The wonderful new novel from the Man Booker Prize shortlisted author of The Glass Room is both a gripping adventure story and a moving meditation on patriotism, betrayal and the limits of love.

Marian Sutro is an outsider: the daughter of a diplomat, half French, half British, naive yet too clever for her own good. But when she is recruited from her desk job by SOE to go undercover in wartime France, it seems her hybrid status - and fluent French - will be of service to a greater, more dangerous cause. Trained in sabotage, dead-drops, how to perform under interrogation, and how to kill, Marian parachutes into southwest France with an urgent mission....

©2012 Simon Mawer (P)2012 W F Howes Ltd

Critic reviews

"The Girl Who Fell from the Sky comes from a long and glorious tradition of spy novels that you just can't put down. It's taut fiction at it's best." ( Stylist)

What members say

Average customer ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

A great thriller, but also beautifully written

Marian Sutro is bilingual and is recruited by the Special Ops unit in the Second World War to be trained to be a French agent. The novel follows her through this period and into France as she pursues her 'special mission'. I couldn't stop listening to this book - it has a great plot, which keeps you wondering what happens next and really getting involved in Marian's fate. Further though, this is not just a good thriller, the writing is at times absolutely beautiful, and some descriptions will stay with me for a long time.

The narration is also beautifully done, with each character having their own distinctive voice. I thoroughly recommend.

66 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

An exciting story

I enjoyed this audio book and was engrossed by the heroine's exploits in occupied France as she evaded the Nazis, fell in love and helped the French resistance. The narrator brought characters to life and I was sorry when the book ended. I felt a sequel is needed to tell us what happened next to the players in this exciting story.

18 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Mills and Boon meets Allo Allo

Any additional comments?

Dire. Cliched, unconvincing characters doing a disservice to the real women of the SOE. Silly ending, but by the time I got there I was just glad it was over so I didn't care..

16 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

Compelling

I really enjoyed this book. Mainly because it concentrated on the characters not the mechanics, Usually WW2 books spend a lot of time explaining how the characters got where they are. This one refers back in simple terms about the characters skills and how they learnt them.

7 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Like WW2 related stories-if so you will like this

Why do I (and you) like stories tied up with the last war? That is something that would take up too many characters to discuss - but I can say in very simple terms that this is an absolutely excellent book - well written and well read (bearing in mind the vast array of characters this cannot have been easy). The reason I have given it a final 5 star is however its ending - which took me completely by surprise and which I think about every day.

14 people found this helpful

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

This could have been so much better.

I was looking forward to hearing this book, the era has always interested me and there are so many true stories of men and women who were active behind enemy lines in Europe helping defeat the Nazis in those dangerous and difficult times.

This could have been a stonkingly good story but opportunities have been missed. The "heroine" is depicted as young and innocent but despite her training she never grows up and at the end of the somewhat stodgy story she comes across as plain stupid. The ending is very disappointing and a bit sudden. There could have been powerful moments of tension and suspense - I kept waiting for that but it never happened.
This could have been a great story. It isn't.

6 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Well worth a listen

This was the second novel I'd listened/read by this author and it didn't disappoint. It is a compulsive listen, well narrated and beautifully written - I couldn't stop once I got started.

6 people found this 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

Ridiculous

A girl not long out of school is recruited into the resistance and after a short training is posted to France. She is hopeless at keeping secrets, appears to do whatever she chooses giving the listener no clear idea of what her goal is. I could not warm to her and without spoiling the ending I'm glad it was this way.

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

A fascinating and inteliigently researched book.

I have read the Glass Room and enjoyed it immensely. Listening to the audio version of The Girl who Fell from the Sky was a wonderful experience. Not only is the writing superb but Anna Bentinck's reading is one of the best. She perfectly complements the exqusite writing and storyline. Both her French and German accents are flawless. Thank you so much. I cannot recommend this audible book high enough. I didn't want it to end.

9 people found this helpful

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

Hate to give up but...

Four hours in and I find myself no longer able to continue simply because I realise I don't care for any of the characters. I appreciate the message the author is trying to get across about the heroism of the women during that time and the difficulties they faced but I find the main character fickle , immature, vindictive - all in all annoying. The prose seems nicely written at first but after a while you find it's actually quite repetitive and being almost half way through the book it feels like nothing has really happened. Always hate to give up on a book but alas I feel no attachment to these characters whatsoever and can't go on.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Jennifer
  • Jennifer
  • 24-09-14

The "hook" is missing

Any additional comments?

The book got many great reviews and I was looking forward to a story about covert operations in World War II. There were some interesting sections on the training of operatives, but it felt more like a romance in a wartime setting - with neither angle being developed in much depth. The story is a bit thin and predictable. I listened to the end because the narrator was really good .

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
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  • R J Bennett
  • 19-02-13

good read

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

good story, but finished very abruptly, just as I was begining to enjoy it

What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

the training of these spy agent prior to work,
least interesting was the finish

What three words best describe Anna Bentinck’s performance?

enjoyed the reading

1 person found this helpful