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Publisher's Summary

Exclusively from Audible
In Phineas Finn, the second of the Palliser series, Trollope balances the rival demands of public and private life, entangling political ambitions with the experiences of love.
Phineas Finn, an irresistible but penniless young Irish barrister enters Parliament and comes to London leaving behind him an Irish sweetheart, Mary Flood-Jones. In London, Phineas wins friends on all sides and is admitted into high society. However, he also falls more-or-less in love, first with politically-minded Lady Laura Standish, then with Violet Effingham, and finally with wealthy widow Madame Max Goesler.
With his character, reputation and prospects at stake, Phineas must make some ethical choices in regards to his career, political beliefs and romantic life - but what must he sacrifice?
Trollope deals with a diverse set of topics including reform and the Irish question, the position of women in society, and the conflict that integrity and ambition pose, the latter still being as relevant today as it was in the 1860s.
Phineas Finn is the first of Trollope's works to feature the affairs of the parliamentary world as a major interest. Three of the main characters are based on Benjamin Disraeli, William Gladstone, and the English reform politician John Bright.
Narrator Biography
Timothy West is prolific in film, television, theatre, and audiobooks. He has narrated a number of Anthony Trollope's classic audiobooks, including the six Chronicles of Barsetshire and The Pallisers series. He has also narrated volumes of Simon Schama's A History of Britain and John Mortimer's Rumpole on Trial.
Timothy's theatre includes King Lear, The Vote, Uncle Vanya, A Number, Quarter, and Coriolanus and his films include Ever After, Joan Of Arc, Endgame, Iris, The Day of the Jackal. On television, Timothy has appeared in Broken Biscuits (BBC), Great Canal Journeys (across 3 Series), regular role of Stan Carter on EastEnders (BBC); Last Tango in Halifax; Bleak House, Bedtime and Brass.
Public Domain (P)2014 Audible, Inc.
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Customer Reviews

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By Virginia Waldron on 04-27-12

Timothy West Is My Homeboy

I have joined the Trollope Society because of the sheer delight that is to be found in this narrator's interpretation of Anthony Trollope's work. I love all the detail and subtlety. The writing takes you to another place and time in the most absorbing and fascinating way. I feel as if I am part of that world when I am reading. Robin Gibb was brought out of a coma by the singing of his family around him. I have told my husband that I want Timothy West reading Anthony Trollope if I am ever in such a dire situation. His reading is sublime. I love every single word. This production is simply perfect. Highly recommended.

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8 of 8 people found this review helpful

By Millamant on 12-27-10

Phineas Finn, the Irish Member

Trollope was fascinated by contemporary politics, which are the common undercurrent of the six Palliser novels. He in fact ran unsuccessfully as a Liberal candidate himself, and it's hard not to detect a particular fondess on the part of the author for Phineas Finn, who appears in several novels in the series, and who is the hero of two, this second installment, and book four, Phineas Redux.

Phineas Finn enters the House of Commons as an outsider on a number of counts: he is very young, he has no income (a real problem in the days when MPs received no salaries), he is not of particularly elevated social position, being the son of a country doctor, he is Irish, and he is a Roman Catholic. Despite these disadvantages, and repeated setbacks in the fields of politics, friendships and love, his charm, sociability, intelligence and determination drive a steady rise through the ranks of the House of Commons???until proposed legislation on the subject of Irish Tenant Rights poses a moral dilemma even Phineas cannot see a way out of.

All the Timothy West Trollope recordings are top notch, and this is no different. While this is probably one of the more "political" novels in the sequence, this should not put off anybody who has enjoyed the other novels, as it is all well explained, and the political side of the story is off-set with several subplots involving Phineas's private life--which, given that he is young, attractive, and has an irresistible eye for the ladies, is turbulent to say the least. Trollope is always sympathetic when depicting female characters, and Phineas's women friends, Lady Laura Standish, the beautiful heiress Violet Effingham, and the beguiling Austrian widow, Madame Max Goessler, are all fascinating in their own right.

It is worth listening to these novels in sequence if you can manage it, but not essential. The first in the series is Can You Forgive Her?, but you could easily start with Phineas Finn if you preferred.

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7 of 7 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

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By James on 07-01-10

As good as it gets.

A beautifully read and fascinating insight into Victorian politics. Exactly the same problems and dilemmas face the modern politician. My great regret is that Audible have not yet bought the rights to other Trollope novels in the same series read by West. They are all there and can be found on tape.

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10 of 10 people found this review helpful

By Philadelphus on 10-03-10


This is one of Trollope's best novels. Phineas himself is a variation on one of his stock protagonists - the callow young man who finds himself simultaneously attached to more than one woman at a time. But he is a real character with a personality of his own, not a cardboard cutout. The Irish dimension adds to the interest and the picture of politics and the media is fascinating and never, ever dull. Lady Laura is one of Trollope's strongest and most interesting women, though as a man of his time he doesn't find her a way of exercising her talents. But that's how it was, and the waste of it is his point, even though he can't see a way out. And finally, as ever, Timothy West's reading couldn't be bettered. Roll on 'Phineas Redux' and the rest of the Palliser series.

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8 of 8 people found this review helpful

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