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Interesting look into Edwardian Britain's service customs, but for a non-Briton there are quite a few terms the author uses but does not define, apparently assuming the reader already knows. As for the narration, Ms. Stern reads quotations mimicking the accents she expects that the writer would have spoken which takes me right out of the narrative as if I've hit a speedbump. Therefore we have Germans speaking in a cartoonish stereotypical manner, various forms of Cockney and other accents from the British Isles, and apparently Ms. Stern believes that all Americans sound as if they are from the Jersey Shore. This, combined with her halting manner of delivering un-accented narration, make it, while not an unendurable listen, harder to follow and less enjoyable than it could have been. I wouldn't say to avoid this book, but you might enjoy the printed version more.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful
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I enjoyed the content of this book very much - it's a well-researched collection of slice-of-life accounts from both sides of the British social gap in the late 1800s and early 1900s. I appreciated that we heard from both the servants and their (usually oblivious) masters, and that the author followed the changing societal attitudes towards service as time went on and WWI began. However, I probably would have enjoyed it more as a physical book than as an audiobook. The narrator has a distracting habit of pausing every few words whether or not it made sense as a stopping point in the sentence, which breaks up the flow of the writing and makes it hard to follow.
6 of 7 people found this review helpful