Sarum

  • by Edward Rutherfurd
  • Narrated by Wanda McCaddon
  • 45 hrs and 36 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

In Sarum, Edward Rutherfurd weaves a compelling saga of five English families whose fates become intertwined over the course of centuries. While each family has its own distinct characteristics, the successive generations reflect the changing character of Britain. We become drawn not only into the fortunes of the individual family members, but also the larger destinies of each family line.
Meticulously researched and epic in scope, Sarum covers the entire sweep of English civilization: from the early hunters and farmers, the creation of Stonehenge, the dawn of Christianity, and the Black Death; through the Reformation, the wars in America, the Industrial Age, and the Victorian social reforms; up through the World War II invasion of Normandy and the modern-day concerns of a once-preeminent empire.

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What the Critics Say

“Nadia May is ideal; her British accents fit the locale, and her pacing and characterizations are smooth, unobtrusive and compelling. The ease of her reading leads the listener to forget she is there, the sign of the perfect narrator.” (AudioFile)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

must love Wanda

(aka Doneda Peters and Nadia May) because you'll be listening to so much of her here - and from reading reviews of other books she's narrated, listeners usually have a love or hate relationship with her. She has an older-style narration (Talking Books) and she shines in classics with multiple-claused sentences and in nonfiction. I love her, and that was the tipping point for this download for me -- because although I love historical fiction, I usually can't stand anything earlier than early a 19th century setting.

I really didn't expect to like this novel - I thought it a good value for listening and learning while I did chores, etc.- but I VERY much enoyed the listen too. It's not a Ken Follet page turner, but I think the details will linger in a listener's mind more than those from a potboiler. Rutherford knits together a unique novel-docudrama

He does take century long leaps in time and in conjecture, but after about ten hours of listening, this starts to seem natural! I did not experience the technical glitches mentioned by other reviewers, BUT it does sound like an older quality recording (back when Wanda was getting paid about $15 a hour).

So know what you're getting before you hit "cart" -- or like me, if you have days to fill with listening, take a chance in case you too will be pleasantly surprised.

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- connie "Narrative makes the world go round."

Production Issues

Rutherford performs at his usual high standard. I'm always entertained and informed by his work. Unfortunately, the narrator/production crew fell short. Although the narrator has a soothing but authoritative voice (to me), there are numerous odd pauses that could have been edited, as well as deficiencies in the audio file (skips, gaps). Perhaps minor quibbles, but annoying nonetheless.
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- Stephen

Book Details

  • Release Date: 08-15-2011
  • Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.