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Publisher's Summary

Exclusively from Audible
The story of a woman's struggle for independence from an abusive husband. Helen 'Graham' has returned to Wildfell Hall in flight from a disastrous marriage and to protect her young son from the influence of his father.
Exiled to the desolate moorland mansion, she adopts an assumed name and earns her living as a painter. Gilbert Markham, a local man intrigued by the beautiful young 'widow' offers his friendship but becomes distrustful when her reclusive behaviour sparks rumours and speculation. When she offers her diary for him to read only then does he discover the dark truth of her shocking past.
The second and last novel written by Anne Brontë, the youngest of the six Brontë children, The Tenant of Wildfell Hall deals with alcoholism, physical and emotional abuse, unhappy marriages and adultery. Anne's novels are distinctly different from that of her sisters, filled with gritty realism. After her death, Anne's sister, Charlotte, prevented its republication perhaps due to her belief that it was overly graphic and an 'entire mistake'.
Despite first being published in 1848, The Independent described it as a 'frighteningly up-to-date tale of single motherhood and wife-battering.' It is considered one of the more shocking of the Brontë stories and due to Helen's breaking of social convention and law holds firm as one of the first feminist novels.
Narrator Biography
Three-time Olivier Award winner actor Alex Jennings is known for portraying Prince Charles in The Queen (2006) as well as appearing in Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason (2004), Babel (2006) and The Lady in the Van (2015). His television work has included Cranford (2007), Silk (2011-2014), and Victoria (2016). He has narrated many audiobooks including Charlie Connelly's Attention All Shipping, which in 2008 was chosen as one of the top 40 audiobooks of all time.
Jenny Agutter began her acting career as a child in 1964's East of Sudan and is well known for appearing in three adaptations of The Railway Children. She starred in the critically acclaimed 1971 film Walkabout as well as receiving a string of Hollywood roles. She won an Emmy for her role in The Snow Goose (1971), as well as a BAFTA for her role in Equus (1997). More recently she has appeared in several television dramas, including Spooks (2002-2003), and Call the Midwife since 2012. She has performed in numerous theatre productions, including roles with the National Theatre and the Royal Shakespeare Company. She has also narrated audiobooks Dodie Smith's I Capture the Castle and Jane Austen's Emma and featured in the Doctor Who audio dramas The Bride of Peladon and The Minister of Chance. In 2012 she was appointed OBE for her charity work.
Public Domain (P)2014 Audible, Inc
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Christopher on 02-02-07

highly recommended

This is an inspiring and beautifully written book and one I will probably re-read, as fresh today as when it was written over 150 years ago; English prose at it's height. The narration is as well superb. This ranks with Jane Eyre as one of my all-time favourites.

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25 of 25 people found this review helpful

4 out of 5 stars
By C. Telfair on 03-04-12

My favorite Bronte book

Despite being lesser known than her sisters' works, "The Tenant of Wildfell Hall" may be the best of the Bronte books. Anne is a good writer; terrific at description, and there is humor here and richness of character development. I really loved this listen. The story is long and, I will admit, tedious at times (it's a Victorian novel after all!), but this edition of the audio book has handled the strange structure of the book very well. Both Alex Jennings and Jenny Agutter render their portions of the narrative beautifully.
A word of warning, however. This claims to be an Unabridged version, but it is not so. Because I was listening to the book as a book club assignment, I followed along with the written version and found some puzzling omissions. Just why they chose to abridge some parts -- especially in the central, diary portion of the book -- I can't imagine. The cuts are small and not terribly important, but nevertheless are there. Anyone wishing to experience the entire work should be aware of the abridgment.
But it's a fine trip! I'm very pleased to have learned that there is more to the Brontes than "Jane Eyre" and "Wuthering Heights".

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24 of 24 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
4 out of 5 stars
By Sally on 10-18-09

The Tenant of Wildfell Hall

Another book I studied for English Literature. I liked this one! I liked the fact that two different narrators were used: one for Markham and one for Helen. Jenny Agutter excels. Very enjoyable.
My only criticisms are you can hear a tiny bit of background noise very briefly, but it is acceptable. Also, at the part where Markham starts to narrate again, one has just got used to J.A's reading which is superior, and I don't feel he did justice to their agonising meeting. This rather spoilt it for me. I think it would have been better to dramatise it with the two readers at that point.
Other than that this is a fine narration.

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16 of 16 people found this review helpful

4 out of 5 stars
By Lorna on 01-18-14

Poor direction.

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes. It's a good story.

Any additional comments?

Unfortunately several parts of the narration were inaudible due to low volume. When Alex Jennings was speaking some of Helen's dialogue he did it in a whisper. No doubt this was for dramatic effect, however without increasing the volume it is inaudible. This is irritating and inconvenient. This is by no means a criticism of Alex Jennings narration, it is a criticism of direction/production.

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10 of 11 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By wendy on 09-05-17


l enjoyed this book , its story line, the discretion of the english countryside. The caricatures of the time and way of life.

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