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Publisher's Summary

This is the second book in the famous Lymond Chronicals by Dorothy Dunnett, exploring the intricacies of 16th century history through the exploits of the soldier Francis Crawford of Lymond. In Queens Play, Crawford is despatched to France and embarks on a nightmare game of hide and seek in the court of Henri II...
©1992 Dorothy Dunnett (P)2001 W F Howes
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By Suzanne on 11-18-13

A wonderfully complex, satisfying story

One of my all-time favorite books, now in Audible. Terrific! Listening to this really makes you hear everything. Dunnett is an amazing writer, and Francis Crawford of Lymond is an amazing character. Subtle, smart and flawed, you never get bored. Queen's Play is a detailed look at the French Court and Lymond's time with them is mesmerizing and at times, hilarious. I found I got more out of the story by listening to it, because it forced me to hear every word. Although I've read this many times, I was hearing parts of this complex story that somehow I'd missed previously!

Dunnett's use of language is remarkable, reminding me at times of Shakespeare. It was fascinating to hear it read, with all the complexity of the quotations, accents, and languages.

Napier's narration was wonderful. At first I thought that he was too fast, as the action moves so quickly, it can be hard to follow. Yet as the story moved on, I found him to be perfect, as I got into the rhythm of his cadence. His accents, and his French, just added to the story.

Can't wait to listen to the rest of the series, and hope they add 'Game of Kings'.

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17 of 17 people found this review helpful


By Grace on 12-11-13

Lymond's back but where's Book 1 THE GAME OF KINGS

Would you listen to Queens' Play again? Why?

Having anxiously waited for what seems to be forever, finally The Lymond Chronicles!<br/><br/>Audible, please make the The Game of Kings (Book 1) available as quickly as possible! These books should be savored in the order they were written and as I have read them in the "old-fashioned" way atleast once a year since they were originally released in print.<br/><br/>It is so wonderful to have the books currently available read by such an accomplished narrator. Beautiful inflexion; realistic and measured pace just as I would have imagined Ms. Dunnett to have meant.<br/><br/>So very pleased!! I will keep these books in "My Library" for always!

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13 of 13 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

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By Fodon on 11-30-15

Such a shame!

Would you try another book written by Dorothy Dunnett or narrated by Andrew Napier?

Author definitely, narrator - not if I had any choice in the matter.

Any additional comments?

Having come to these books after listening to the 'Niccolo' series, I can't say strongly enough what a poor choice of narrator has been made here. While I understand the thinking behind wanting someone with a Scots accent to narrate these books, Napier's attempts at other accents, his pronunciation and his tempo are awful. His attempt at Irish accents (of which there were a lot) was truly appalling, at times veering from Scouse to Brummie to completely unintelligible. So bad in fact that I found myself shouting at the recording for him to shut up! Was there no quality control when they were pumping these things out? It really does take away from very enjoyable tales and having just checked who narrates the remaining books in the series - I am seriously wondering if my desire to see where the author takes the story can outweigh my dread at having to listen to his performance of them.

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4 of 4 people found this review helpful


By MumsieWumsie on 04-17-15

Who chose this narrator?

Would you try another book written by Dorothy Dunnett or narrated by Andrew Napier?

Not if it's narrrated by Andrw Napier. I've read all the books several times.

What other book might you compare Queens' Play to, and why?

Dorothy Dunnett is in a class of her own when it comes to historical fiction in my opinion, you can't compare her to anyone else. If you want to try more by this author, then listen to The House of Niccolo series, which have a better narrator as well as a brilliant plot-line

How did the narrator detract from the book?

The first thing any narrator should do is to make sure he can pronounce words, especially names. The main character's name 'Lymond' is not pronounced 'Limmond' but as in 'Lie'mond<br/><br/>The pace of delivery was too fast so some words were difficult to hear with the Scottish accent, especially if listened to in the car. It was almost delivered in a monotone, with not enough differentiation between characters and the accents were not good. It was dire!!

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Queens' Play?

None - everything matters. Not necessarily in this book, but something will happen later that links back to Queens' Play.

Any additional comments?

I shalln't bother buying the rest of this series with Andrew Napier as narrator as he has completely spoiled my listening.<br/><br/>I prefer Samuel Gillies who narrated the first book 'The Game of Kings', although he did sound a little too old for the young Francis Crawford. The overall enjoyment of that book was much greater.

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3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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