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The Memory Game

Narrated by: Harriet Walter
Length: 10 hrs and 50 mins
4 out of 5 stars (232 ratings)

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Editor reviews

The Memory Game, written by Nicci French is a chilling psychological thriller audiobook narrated by English actress Harriet Walter. At once a mystery but also a fascinating example of attempting to recover those early childhood memories people can never recall in adulthood. Two little girls always play in their garden until one goes mysteriously missing. Her body is not discovered until 25 years later, buried in the same garden. It is a dangerous task to unravel the mystery of who killed the girl. Available now from Audible.

Summary

The Memory Game is a haunting psychological thriller from the top-ten best-selling author Nicci French.

You remember an idyllic childhood. But your memory is deceitful. And possibly deadly...

When a skeleton is unearthed in the Martellos' garden, Jane Martello is shocked to learn it's that of her childhood friend Natalie, who went missing 25 years ago.

Encouraged by a therapist to recover lost memories, Jane hopes to find out what really took place when she was a child - and what happened to Natalie. But in learning the truth about her and Natalie's past, is Jane putting her own future at terrible risk?

©2012 Joined-up Writing (P)2014 Audible, Inc.

What members say

Average customer ratings

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

Hard to care by the end-usually love Nicci French

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

Not really time worth spent. The story seemed implausible, as if it was merely a vehicle for the authors to examine the concept of false memory syndrome. The characters weren't likeable, particularly the main character, Jane.

If you’ve listened to books by Nicci French before, how does this one compare?

Not good at all. I kept listening to it because I'd always enjoyed Nicci French books in the past so hoped it would get better. It didn't really.

Which scene did you most enjoy?

Probably the final scene.

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

I really would rather watch paint dry than sit through the film of this book.

Any additional comments?

I'm glad I've listened to other Nicci French books and enjoyed them immensely. If this is your first Nicci French book, don't let it put you off the authors - everything else they've done has been first-rate.

11 people found this helpful

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

Really good and interesting

At times I wondered where this story was going but the reader was so good I decided to keep with the flow. Thoroughly enjoyed it

2 people found this 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

Long drawn out but worth it..

Not the best Nicci French story, taking longer to play out the narrative than others, but worthwhile if you stick with it. Excellent narrator.

6 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Gave up at chapter six!

I struggled with the amount of characters introduced early on, felt the story wasn’t believable - shame, as this is the first book I’ve ever returned 😳

1 person found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Really poor

I’ve read all of Nicki French’s Freida Klein books so I didn’t think this would be a risk. How wrong can you be!

A couple of things really spoilt this book for me
SPOILER ALERT


1) The narrator, who was able to do a host of very believable regional dialects, chose the most twee and old fashioned BBC English accent for Jane. It’s as if people really think that us Brits speak that that. So frustrating and downright irritating towards the end.

2) The plot was ridiculous. I mean, if you found a body buried under the patio your suspects would be the people who lived there wouldn’t it!!!! The police didn’t seem interested in finding the killer and police procedure and protocol didn’t appear to exist at all.

3) The creepy therapist. All just a bit weird and unnerving.

4) The fact that most of the details about the two families were fairly irrelevant to the story and yet Nicki French went into so much annoying detail. Same with Janes career as an architect and the building project - What was the point? And her relationship with Casper - how did that add to the story??

All in all a really terrible story narrated in the most annoying and old fashioned British accent. I only persevered to the end because I was determined not to have wasted the previous hours spent listening to it.

Not impressed 😤

1 person found this helpful

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

Mesmerising!

What did you like most about The Memory Game?

I couldn't stop listening. Believable and sympathetic protagonist and Harriet Walter excellent on portraying many diverse characters.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Great

Well read and the story had me hooked right to the end. Would definitely recommend it.

1 person found this helpful

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

I really wanted to enjoy it, but I found it slow.

It was ok. I listen while walking my dog so it was easy to persevere with. There were chapters or sections that feel completely redundant and I found myself groaning at some of the more superfluous parts. Good twist at the end.

1 person found this helpful

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

A mirror image.

.Strange to say, I enjoyed this audio book. Strange because this is not the type of fiction I would normally prefer and I also try to avoid female narrators finding their voices irritating. over time. However, in this book, for me Harriet Walter's reading is what made the story so engaging. She really became the main protagonist whose search to discover what happened to her friend 25 years previously is the basis for the novel. A body is found in the grounds of the house during an extended family gathering. it is that of her missing friend, the daughter of the central family. She had been strangled and buried , but why? And by whom?
All that happens is written from a first person perspective as she tries to piece together the memories of her friend and, in particular, the last time she was seem. But she can't remember clearly : it has been too long. As she feels her life crumbling around her, she seeks help and slowly her remembrances clarify even if her personal life does not.
I found the main storyline rather tedious and predictable, but the characterisations were excellent and Ms. Walter's interpretation held my attention throughout. However, i think that, had I been reading the printed book , i would have become bored fairly quickly.
Would I recommend it? As an audio book, possibly As a written work alone, no.

1 person found this helpful

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

Good Story

It's a slow start but intriguing story with a good unexpected ending. Narrators performance was good too.

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Candice
  • 22-08-13

Boring

I agree with the last reviewer, in that this story was pretty boring. The main problem I had was the fact that it really didn't get into much of the mystery until the very end of the book. The rest of the book was just too detailed about everything outside of the actual plot. It wasn't until the very end of the book that the story got back on topic and discussed the plot. Too much detail about off-topic stuff and not enough plot.

3 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • KismetKat11
  • 07-07-16

Not quite as strong as previous efforts

I find it difficult to review my issues with the plot without spoiling the book for others. So, please proceed with caution. Based on the event that Frieda experiences, the ultimate perpetrator is shown to have had a level of sophistication early on that doesn't ring true. Crime perpetrators evolve over time and typically have priors before being able to commit the big ones. So, although the book is well written and I love the Frieda Klein series. However, the resolution of this case didn't make sense to me so I was disappointed when the culprit was revealed.

2 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Lonnie
  • 11-05-15

A little less than okay

I love a good story with a twist at the end, but this one was morally reprehensible. Couldn't the author think of any other relationship for the main characters than what she came up with? Seriously?
Also, I'm always amazed that talented writers can't think of any better way to express themselves than using the "f" word over and over again.

2 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Laurie
  • 18-03-15

Not the best Nicci French

This was a good story but not the best I have read from this author.
I would read another Nicci French novel.

2 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Donna J. Shaw
  • 13-05-16

Not French's best

This was obviously one of the author's earlier works. While the plot was a bit cumbersome, it was rescued buy a magnificent performance given by Harriet Walter.

1 person found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 25-05-15

Predictable

Boring and very predictable. What is with writers these days. They don't have an original thought of their own.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Ricki Brown
  • 05-05-15

Favorite find in a long time!!

Just when you think it's not possible to shock you more, and you've figured everyone out... That's when the characters you've grown to love, leave your head spinning yet again.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • GW
  • 09-07-14

Surprises with every turn of the page

What made the experience of listening to The Memory Game the most enjoyable?

I would just think I had things figured out and then suddenly I would get a surprise. Great plotting!

What other book might you compare The Memory Game to and why?

The look into the past and the surprises make this one a bit like reading a Kate Morton book.

Have you listened to any of Harriet Walter’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

This is the only one I have listened to but I enjoyed it very much. I would like to hear more from her.

1 person found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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  • Kindle Customer
  • 21-08-13

Boring!

I've seen plows that didn't drag as much as this story. I still don't know what the point is.

2 people found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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  • Deb
  • 08-03-18

Even Dame Harriet Walter couldn't save this book

The narrator, per usual, was great but the book was terrible. A good idea for a mystery but the inept writing and ending made for a terrible listening experience.