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Flashman is a cynical, cowardice, racist bully - the kind of man who we secretly do not hate entirely because we are not sure how to convincingly hold the position of total lack of admiration for such men. To his credit, he is a most talented polyglot, horseman, and womaniser, and his adventures in the midst of major macro political events of the 19th century takes the reader laughing though history's I'll-lit side-allies. There, the story's anti-hero upholds the British empire by running from its enemies, sleeping with the maximum possible amount of women, and more often than not manages to wriggle himself out of the absurd kinds of trouble he repeatedly finds himself in. Hilariously written. Excellent stuff.
Fantastic story that races along paralleling Anthony Hope's famous novel. The narrator is absolutely perfect!
What made the experience of listening to Royal Flash the most enjoyable?
The narrator is good but I wish they would use a female voice for the female parts as it all sounds a bit pantomime with a bloke reading female responses.
What did you like best about this story?
Continues along the Flashman route,you can't get better.
What does Colin Mace bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?
He is very good and keeps the momentum going.
Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?
Any additional comments?
Just good fun stories
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
Elaborating on my criticism of the first Flashman in this audio series, I'm so disappointed with the narration that I won't continue with the rest.
I enjoy revisiting books that I love; having them read to you by a skilled actor on a second visit can enrich the text, bringing out nuances in character and other elements which make the re-read well worthwhile. A great example of this is the Aubrey-Maturin "Master & Commander" series. I loved the books the first time and then felt like I'd doubled the enjoyment by listening to Ric Jerrom's take on the characters.
I was so looking forward to seeing what a narrator could do with Flashy. One of literature's great comic creations deserved something special and Coin Mace has done nothing to bring this off. If you had never read the Flashman novels then you might get through these recordings having enjoyed the stories as they were. If it comes to the words alone, then Macdonald Fraser's books are an absolute delight. But if this is your second time around and, like me, you were hoping for something special, then you will be severely disappointed.
Mace's delivery adds nothing, and in many ways detracts from the story. He reads like someone who has never seen the words before. Intonation and rhythm is repetitive and inappropriate. Time and time again he misses great comic lines and sounds like someone reading a text for the first time with no rehearsal.
Harry Flashman deserves more. He is a character whose words paint a picture of a historical past, but also of a spineless rogue. The books are his words and they needed, not only an actor who could live up to this challenge, but one who could add to it too.
I'm not going to listen to any more of this series because it irritates me so much. It irritates me that Flashy hasn't been brought off the page in a way that I know other characters have been. But the narration actually grates. Sentence stress and intonation in this recording is indicative of someone who is taking no interest in what he is saying and instead attempting to enliven it by randomly dramatising parts which don't need it and passing over parts which do.
Huge opportunity missed. What a shame.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful