What a tease!

I finally got around to noticing the new interview with Mr. Armitage and extract from The Convenient Marriage (h/t Richard Armitage Online). On the former more anon, on the latter, fascinating, BUT!

After reading the book before I left for Germany, I found myself scratching my head for a few reasons, not the least of which was the fact that the work’s male protagonist, Marcus Rule, is the most opaque of the male characters in Armitage’s Heyer audiobooks so far. Heyer gives both Salford and Damerel the opportunity to reflect on their lives and loves, but Rule gets none of that. Combine that with a stammering heroine (Horatia), and pessimist that I am, I started foreseeing difficulties for myself in liking what Armitage was going to do. I like his female voices, but the book is so overwhelminingly female, and I knew I was going to miss the sort of rueful roué reflections that he so effectively filled out with Damerel. The book does include a considerably larger number than the earlier ones of male-only rough and tumble, so I was consoling myself with that and figuring we were going to get to hear a larger panoply than usual in Heyer of male voices.

I wasn’t going to listen to the extract, only the interview, but I couldn’t get over my curiosity as to how Armitage was going to voice the stammering Horatia. It’s a great extract, but it cuts off after Horatia speaks only one word!!!!!

Yes, I’ve preordered it. Six more weeks.

~ by Servetus on June 23, 2010.

15 Responses to “What a tease!”

  1. Isn’t that a great trick, leave them wanting more? After ordering dvds and audiobooks and trudging half-way across Oslo to get a single copy of Chris Ryan’s Strike Back, the thought has occurred to me; why doesn’t Richard start his own corner shop? He’d be a millionaire within a week!

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  2. Amen to THAT MillyMe!

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  3. I am reading it at the moment. I like what Heyer does with her heroines, they all have some sort of marked charateristic that makes them less than perfect. I sort of love that. They are far more relatable as characters, and allows the reader, who this reader at least, it more than less than perfect. I love the fact that Horatia has a stutter. The way he has handled it in the audio clip, it quite lovely. He did this really soft s sound. All the women in her novels, are really spunky too.

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  4. Mine is waiting for me in the library. Great interview again though. Lets hope when they post it on the Naxos website we’ll get a longer extract. Let the countdown begin!

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  5. Please servetus and everyone else, I’d like some advice on these Heyer/Armitage audiobooks. I haven’t read any of them and have only listened to the samples. So, should I read the book before listening to the (abridged) audiobook or vice versa, or should I not bother with the books at all and just enjoy the audiobooks? I’m not a particular fan if Heyer, though I am trying.

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    • Fwiw: I should say the only one where I’m familiar with both the book and audiobook is “Sylvester.” (I’ve listened to “Venetia” but not read it yet, and read “Convenient Marriage” but obviously not heard it yet.) Based on that limited sample, I’d say don’t worry about reading Heyer unless you like the stories and want more detail. Real Heyer fans always complain about the abridgements, but Heyer really isn’t for everyone. It’s located in a weird middle place. It’s not Jane Austen, but it’s also not Harlequin Romances, either. I loved her as a teenager (see my fan letter to Mr. Armitage on why I love how he treats her work), but as my tastes have changed I’ve been forced to concede that her work is really a sort of better potboiler. You don’t have to feel guilty for reading it; it circumvents the problematic politics of gender of popular romances; but it’s also fluff that doesn’t really stay with you. At least that’s my experience.

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  6. @kaprekar: I, too, devoured Georgette Heyer as a teenager, but I can’t tell you what any of her books are about any longer, so my advice is why not get introduced to her through the husky chocolatey tones of a wonderful actor. Surely it doesn’t get better than that!

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  7. I too was a Heyer fan long ago, and I have enjoyed rereading her. (What can I say? Major fluff lover here!)
    But one certainly doesn’t need to read Heyer to appreciate RA’s fabulous voice skills. I had never been interested in audiobooks before, but I will not rest until I have every audiobook and voice clip where he has ever utters a sound!

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  8. It’s a given that I do not appreciate the decision for Naxos to abridge these books. I mean I would listen to Mr.Armitage reading the phonebook but these books are so short and full with humor. Never heard of Georgette Heyer before hence I presumed long elaborated landscape or ethiquette descriptions would have been abridged. I read both Venetia and Sylvester but in different order. I listened to Sylvester and afterwards read the book to know what was abridged. In waiting for Venetia I read it first and then listened to the audioversion. Based upon that I would recommend to read Venetia. I felt what was abridged in Sylvester was minor to the overall story. The opposite is the case for Venetia I think. Still if this genre is already a stretch for you don’t even go there.
    I’m linking to a review by Reviewerama of Sylvester the audiobook, be warned it does have spoilers. http://reviewerama.blogspot.com/2010/02/sylvester-audiobook.html
    She also wrote a review of Richard’s reading of Lords of the North
    http://reviewerama.blogspot.com/2009/10/lords-of-north.html
    Lords of the North is only available from The Audiobook Collection, based in Bath, UK. http://www.audiobookcollection.com/ They ship internationally and respond to e-mail.

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  9. @iz4punk Must re-quote,”I’d listen to Mr. Armitage read the phonebook.” So true! In my mind, unless you enjoy the genre, you don’t really need to read the books before listening to the audiobooks. I am reading because it is summer, and the book is a perfect “beach read.” Honestly, this is the first time I had ever purchased or listened to audiobooks, I must say I count the audiobooks as some of my favorite work by Mr. Armitage. You really get a sense of his talent listening to these books. The amount of work he puts in to developing each character, using only his voice, it is truly amazing. I strongly encourage, any fan to listen to them, you won’t be disappointed.

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  10. @Rob very true no need to read it. To be honest after listening to Sylvester I wasn’t particularly inclined to read until I saw some comments about funny parts being ommitted. And being a good study I did read it. Between those two Venetia was my favorite read, I like Damerell a lot better as well as Venetia. Looking forward to starting a Convenient Marriage. And I agree his audiowork is by far the most outstanding of his many talents and my favorite as well. That being said I just ordered my copy of Lords of the North.

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  11. I will read Venetia next then. As you mentioned, the humore really comes through in the books. when reading the books. I don’t think Lords of the North is available in the US. 😦

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    • you’d have to call England to order it, which has stopped me until now. It’s on my list of things to do this summer while I am at least in the same time zone.

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      • You can email the adress on that audiobook website I linked. A gent called Peter will prompty respond. I just placed my order via email and spread out the cc over several mails which he suggested. The total should be 30 pounds. Very good service, when I inquired a couple months ago he replied it as being brilliantly read, obviously very proud of the product. Another thing that could be waiting for you, Servetus!

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