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The Colony  By  cover art

The Colony

By: Audrey Magee
Narrated by: Stephen Hogan
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Publisher's Summary

It is the summer of 1979. An English painter travels to a small island off the west coast of Ireland. Mr. Lloyd takes the last leg by curragh, though boats with engines are available and he doesn't much like the sea. He wants the authentic experience, to be changed by this place, to let its quiet and light fill him, give him room to create. He doesn't know that a Frenchman follows close behind. 

Masson has visited the island for many years, studying their language. He is fiercely protective of their isolation; it is essential to exploring his theories of language preservation and identity. But the people who live on this rock—three miles long and half a mile wide—have their own views on what is being recorded, what is being taken, and what ought to be given in return. 

Over the summer, each of them—from great-grandmother Bean Uí Fhloinn to widowed Mairéad and fifteen-year-old James, who is determined to avoid the life of a fisherman—will wrestle with their own values and desires. Meanwhile, all over Ireland, violence is erupting. And there is blame enough to go around. 

An expertly woven portrait of character and place, a stirring investigation into yearning to find one's own way, and an unflinchingly political critique of the long, seething cost of imperialism, The Colony is a novel that transports, that celebrates beauty and connection, and that reckons with the inevitable ruptures of independence.

©2022 Audrey Magee (P)2022 Dreamscape Media, LLC

What listeners say about The Colony

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Missing 15 pages at the end

This is a beautiful book, but I was reading along with a physical copy at the end, and the audible version just slipped pp356-369! It left out crucial conversations at the very end, and had I not had a book I would never have known. Frustrating for sure! Excellent performance and story, but a fail on the editing end.

5 people found this helpful

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beware ecstatic reviews

This is not an audible book. It is as slow as a wet week on a cold windswept island. It is maddeningly slow and the characters are utterly unlikeable. The narrator drops to a whisper when reading the internal musings of the artist in the book and one has to turn the volume up and then down again.
Beware reviews that include "lyrical", "magical", or "trenchant". It is "the colony" being nice to one of their own

4 people found this helpful

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absorption then linger

Many others write long erudite reviews of this poignant story. I, then, will simply suggest to you that in conception, language , imagery , history & complexity you will find no superior read

1 person found this helpful

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A hard slog

It was hard.to.get through on audio,can,t imagine trying reading...Too long and needlessly repetitive.Lacks clear identity.Is it about Art,language,life on.a remote island,or is.it about a.pompous English.artist or a pompous French linguist,or the 2 dimensional Island habitants?....Meandering themes,interspersed with news flashes of the troubles.in.Northern Ireland,which never truly connected.to.the.main.narrative.It was.like a maze with.no.exit...No.satisfying to payoff

1 person found this helpful

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Heartbreaker

Very good story
That parallels the troubles and the reasons the Irish went mad killing the colonizers
I hope James’ uncle throws the English painter’s work overboard
The false bullshit the British spew is well described in a way to be believed

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outstanding story

Loved it. Fantastic prose, hauntingly surreal and expertise intersections of life and senseless violence

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Maybe my favorite book of 2022

The audiobook version is stunning. So well done! What a gifted writer--- a real artist!