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The Seagull

Narrated by: Janine Birkett
Series: Vera Stanhope, Book 8
Length: 11 hrs and 16 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (1,107 ratings)

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Summary

A visit to her local prison brings DI Vera Stanhope face to face with an old enemy: former detective superintendent John Brace. Brace was convicted of corruption and involvement in the death of a gamekeeper - and Vera played a part in his downfall.

Brace promises Vera information about the disappearance of Robbie Marshall, a notorious wheeler-dealer, if she will look out for his family. He tells her that Marshall is dead, his body buried close to St Mary's Island in Whitley Bay. However, officers find two skeletons.

This cold case takes Vera back in time, and very close to home, as Brace and Marshall, along with a mysterious stranger known only as 'the Prof', were close friends of Hector, her father.

©2017 Ann Cleeves (P)2017 Isis Publishing Ltd

What listeners say about The Seagull

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

don't try the accent if you can't keep it up<br /><br />

brilliant story marred by the harsh accents of the narrator for some of the softest speaking folk in England. don't be fooled Durham isn't Jawdee or Scouse. just like not all Texans say dang! tooting. any more... get past this grate and you will like this book for what it is.



10 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Complicated but very enjoyable

Excellent narration. The plot is complicated, especially towards the end, but it was very enjoyable and every bit as good as the other Vera books.

8 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Brilliant

Excellent as always with Ann Cleeves, and the narrator sets the right atmosphere with her command of the voices. I never wanted the story to end!

16 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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Story OK

I was sorely disappointed with this book. The descriptions are long and drawn out making it rather tedious. For example, the tea tray was prepared ready for Vera's visit, this I feel able to understand without too much prompting, but we then read that there were two cups set out, an empty jug ready to just have the milk poured in, a plate with the packet of biscuits still in its wrapper set on it. The kettle was filled ready to switch on when she arrived! I found this just too much. I was also irritated that every time Vera's was mentioned so was her size and bulk, and Joe always was accompanied by his mean spirited thoughts about his wife's resentment about his being in the police force!
What really topped off my irritation was the very odd narration, this narrator used very odd voices for people, the minister sounded like a doddery old fool, and many of the women could have been 8 year old girls. I used to enjoy the Vera Stanhope novels, but they are tedious now. This one could have been edited to 2/3 of its length without any loss.

7 people found this helpful

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another great read

a good story well read.

I really enjoyed the story line with its twists and turns. the book was well read which made it easy to listen to

look forward to the next one

5 people found this helpful

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magic

great story great narration .. i can lose myself in Vera anytime ... can’t wait for the next

11 people found this helpful

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Excellent story, Vera at her best

Excellent storyline, only irritation was narration of Prof's voice which became ever more implausible

11 people found this helpful

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Brilliant story

Great story. Enjoyed every chapter . read beautifully. Vera and team at their best.

10 people found this helpful

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So much better than the TV series

This story has not been made into a TV series yet. I really enjoy the programmes. But when you hear the full version you realise how much better the full book is. Greater depth of characters, better understanding of the dynamics of the team.

The story is fast moving, but never rushed. A complex story about how the truth will come out.

7 people found this helpful

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Change of media.

I have watched several of the "Vera" stories on television, and this was the first time I had simply listened to one. The experience was even more rewarding as not only did it last longer, but I gained a deeper understanding of all the characters.

The narrator was excellent and of course Brenda Blethyn's image was superimposed in my mind all the way through.

I really enjoyed it.

2 people found this helpful

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  • sally earl
  • 14-08-18

Disappointing

I am halfway through this book and the narration is driving me crazy. So much so I feel compelled to review now before I’ve finished. It is totally spoiling the book for me. I don’t want to be mean and I know it must be difficult to have voices for each character but oh noooo it’s just awful. Joe sounds like the village idiot and everyone else sounds gruff and gormless Sorry to say I would never buy another book narrated by this lady.

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  • Douglas
  • 20-10-17

Slow, tired and overweight -- much like Vera herse

There's a gem of a plot but it's still firmly in the rough. Vera sounds tired, overweight and uninteresting. She's lost the spark she used to have in the earlier books. Her rumpled style has slipped further and really what was an amusing character trait has become tiresome.

Joe... I wish he'd either leave his wife and get it over with or grow a backbone. If he doesn't leave his wife in a future book I'll be surprised. The hints that he's dissatisfied with his marriage are very strong in this one. The fact that he has a thing for Vera is just creepy. The fact that Vera is possessive of Joe is even more creepy. That said I just wish they'd get the tension out of the way and go to bed or something. Again what was once amusing in earlier books is simply old and tired.

I didn't like the last book and this one was only marginally better. My only real take away from it was, the author hates kids, views them as annoying and gets in the way of life. Or at least that's how Vera and Joe seem to portray things. I'll have to think seriously about spending a credit on the next book.