• The Unheard

  • A Novel
  • By: Nicci French
  • Narrated by: Olivia Vinall
  • Length: 9 hrs and 50 mins
  • 4.1 out of 5 stars (461 ratings)

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The Unheard  By  cover art

The Unheard

By: Nicci French
Narrated by: Olivia Vinall
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Publisher's Summary

“Nicci French is a specialist in the kind of evil that burrows from within.” (New York Times Book Review)

In this new heart-pounding stand-alone from the internationally best-selling author that People calls “razor sharp", a single mother suspects her young daughter has witnessed a horrible crime when the girl draws a disturbing picture - but the deadly path to unravel the truth could cost her everything. 

Maybe Tess is overprotective, but passing her daughter off to her ex and his new young wife fills her with a sense of dread. It’s not that Jason is a bad father - it just hurts to see him enjoying married life with someone else. Still, she owes it to her daughter, Poppy, to make this arrangement work.

But Poppy returns from the weekend tired and withdrawn. And when she shows Tess a crayon drawing - an image so simple and violent that Tess can hardly make sense of it - Poppy can only explain with the words “He did kill her”.

Something is horribly wrong. Tess is certain Poppy saw something - or something happened to her - that she’s too young to understand. Jason insists the weekend went off without a hitch. Doctors advise that Poppy may be reacting to her parents’ separation. And as the days go on, even Poppy’s disturbing memory seems to fade. But a mother knows her daughter, and Tess is determined to discover the truth. Her search will set off an explosive tempest of dark secrets and buried crimes - and more than one life may be at stake.

©2021 Nicci French (P)2021 HarperCollins Publishers

What listeners say about The Unheard

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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    188
  • 4 Stars
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  • 3 Stars
    83
  • 2 Stars
    28
  • 1 Stars
    8
Performance
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    36
  • 2 Stars
    6
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    3
Story
  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    162
  • 4 Stars
    121
  • 3 Stars
    80
  • 2 Stars
    35
  • 1 Stars
    12

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

I love Nicci French but this one is “meh”

The characters were unlikeable and I didn’t feel engaged with them at all. The little kid was super-annoying, always “demanding” this or that, and inexplicably putting “did” before every verb. The premise of what she witnessed and the aftermath made no sense at all, nor did the end of the book. Normally I always enjoy their novels tremendously, relishing every twist, but this one felt dull, implausible, and plodding. Oh well—no one can hit it out of the park every time.
The narrator, on the other hand, did an excellent job.

36 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Fine but with flaws...

I listened to this book all the way through so it DID keep my attention and I DID want to know what happened. There’s a big BUT though...the protagonist is an idiot. She makes insensible choices all the way through the story. Her idiocy is absolutely maddening. She’s the most frustrating character and because of that, it takes away from the story. I wanted to stop listening so many times because she was so entitled and ridiculous!

22 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Not her best…

Had to force myself to finish this. Good gawd could the protagonist be any more irritating? And in the first person, too. She comes off as a real idiot. Almost made me hope she got herself killed. I have ejoyed many of Ms. French’s novels. But wish I’d skipped this one.

19 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Engaging and Suspenseful

I really liked The Unheard and thought it was a fun, suspenseful read. I was pretty much hooked after the first few chapters and the story definitely kept my attention. I am a fan of Nicci French and this book did not disappoint. I thought the plot was innovative and the characters interesting. The narration was excellent. Overall, a great read, and I would highly recommend!

18 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

The ending was disappointing.

The book is well performed but by the second half of the book I disliked the main character. It was hard to enjoy the ending due to her whining and belief that every man was out to do “anything” to be with her. Story line didn’t ring true and lacked important details.

14 people found this helpful

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

Exactly what I wanted from an audiobook

Loved the narrator, loved the plot and found myself theorizing and hypothesizing about the ending even when I wasn’t listening.

6 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Unfinished and anticlimactic

The whole story starts out good. Then you get immersed and begin to hate the characters. Tess seems like an entitled mother who lets her daughter do whatever she pleases without saying a word to her. She throws tantrums even hitting her mother and she just stands there calling her daughter darling. She wants teddy she wants ice cream she wants to sleep and to everything Tess says yes darling.
She does incredibly stupid things that turn out has no point whatsoever to the ending.
Also the ending had me like what? Okay we got the culprit but that’s all. We don’t know nothing more. There are a lot of whys that should have been answered for this to be called a good book.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

If I could give this zero stars I would

The child is especially irritating but overall all of the characters are pretty useless. Also, the story is ridiculous.

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Wish i didn’t have to give it one star

The ending was so ridiculous and didn’t make a lick of sense. The main character was very unlikeable. I still don’t understand how her “proof” proved anything. Disjointed, rambling, and the characters were idiots!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Holds your interest

The story is not a real fast moving one and I found myself trying to figure out if the main character was reading into things with the child or if there really was a real need for concern. It definitely kept me interested and I enjoyed the story. I do have to note however that the child did not appeal to me whatsoever. Her manners were atrocious and I found myself just wishing the mom would one time gently correct her when she was so rude to adults.
But the book is worth a credit and I did appreciate how it ended. The author tied up all the loose ends.