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Venetia  By  cover art

Venetia

By: Georgette Heyer
Narrated by: Gemma Whelan
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Publisher's Summary

Brought to you by Penguin.

In all her 25 years, Venetia Lanyon has never been further than Harrogate.

Nor has she enjoyed the attentions of any man aside from her two wearisomely persistent suitors.

Then, in one extraordinary encounter, she meets a neighbour she knew only by reputation - the infamous Jasper Damerel.

Before she realises it, Venetia is encouraging a man whose way of life has scandalised the North Riding for years.

©1958 Penguin Audio (P)2021 Penguin Audio

Critic Reviews

"One of my perennial comfort authors. Heyer's books are as incisively witty and quietly subversive as any of Jane Austen's." (Joanne Harris) 

"Absolutely delicious tales of Regency heroes.... Utter, immersive escapism." (Sophie Kinsella) 

"Rapturously romantic." (Katie Fforde)

What listeners say about Venetia

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  • Audrey Sawyer
  • 09-04-21

Great book, shame about the narration.

One of my all time favourite books - a pity the narrator couldn't do more characterisation. Nearly all the characters sounded the same, even the servants having the same voice, - they could at least have had Yorkshire accents - and it was read rather too quickly. I couldn't listen to very much at all before becoming irritated - I shan't go back to it. Pity Audible no longer give the option of returning a title.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 09-11-21

Quite well narrated

I love this book and it was quite well narrated, but there wasn’t enough differentiation between the characters, who all spoke in uniformly upper class accents, including the servants. Also sometimes the sense or emotion of what the characters were saying was almost completely lost almost as if the narrator only understood what she was reading at the end of a sentence. I found this disappointing and a bit baffling at times. But overall I still enjoyed it

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  • C M Silver
  • 11-06-22

Exasperating Hope

There are 2 audio versions of this book, the short one: 4hr 48 mins or this one: 11hrs 46mins (with various narrators down the years). Unless you are a dyed in the wool Heyer aficionado (like me) choose the short one.

This unrelenting narrator hammers home the events. The hard tone is hard going but perfect for the story (is Gemma Whelan Fiona Bruce?). It benefits from no accents of the region, which assists world wide listeners. (I have never been able to complete The Unknown Ajax for this reason, the hard accents/dialects interfer with the plot as some characters are just too hard on the ears.)

Woman today have opportunities never attributed or afforded to those down their lineage. Unable to own property or vote with little protection in law. How much misery and pain has been suffered for "propriety's" sake? It is all displayed here perfectly examplifying the skill of Ms Heyer in this relic and regale. We walk each step in this love story sharing the pain of Venetia and her exasperating hope. It is rare a book brings me to tears. My favourite Proverb is even mentioned: Proverb 21:9. Is it better to dwell in the corner of the housetop than in a wide room with a brawling woman? Not for Venetia; she makes her stand and follows her heart.

Great book. Great love story.

LOVED IT

PS if ever a book needed a Postscript, it is this one. Did Venetia ever get her dream honeymoon or to attend orgies?



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  • elwyn taylor
  • 10-09-22

Excellent performance, but…

Audible almost talks over the book’s last sentence. Please, Audible, leave us a second or two to savour the experience. You often do this.

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  • AL
  • 09-14-22

Not the best but enjoyable

When the two lovers come together their chemistry is unpalatable. But the social set and tom drama was rather stretched out and became tedious, wish more focus was on the couple. Aside from that a lovely book and can see myself re-listening to it.

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  • Mrs Eleanor Jenkinson
  • 04-29-22

Heyer at her best.

I loved this book. The narrator, Gemma Whelan brought the whole story to life. Brilliant.

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  • Gabrielle Harvey-Jones
  • 03-27-22

Get a better reader, please!

I have loved and read or listened to Georgette Heyer’s books since my early teens. I am now 70 and they are still always my go-to books in stressful times. It is beyond me why Penguin, who seem to hold the rights for these books, can’t find better readers for them? It would at least help if the person reading them did a small bit of research into how some of the common Georgian terms used in the books were pronounced! So annoying!

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  • Mo Bass
  • 10-09-21

Brilliant

I adore Georgette Heuer and have reread her books every few years. Venetia is a favourite. Excellent narrator.

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  • Elizabeth Gowers
  • 10-04-21

Great story about engaging charaters

I have loved this book since I was a teenager and that was a long time ago. I have re-read it many times and find it delightful each time.
The dialogue is the best thing about it. It belongs to its time yet sparkles, shines and entertains, as does Venetia. She could have been flat and hard to believe in because she seems to be all things perfect. It is the humour, spark of mischief and occasional biting assessment she makes that save her. I would love to see this story dramatized.
Borrowing a phrase from Lord Damerel, the end is implicit in the beginning, story-wise, but it is an outcome that you are rooting for and a perfect ending. I find myself wondering how the story might go forward for all the characters whilst knowing that only Georgette Heyer could write it.
The narration is very good but I think an effort to give the characters their own voices would improve it. For example, I always read Nurse with a Yorkshire accent.

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  • Stephanie Alexandra
  • 09-03-21

another great favourite

this is one of my top five favourite Georgette Heyer books, very nicely narrated too

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  • Bungy
  • 10-21-22

A favourite story, with great narration.

I've always loved this story, and Gemma Whelan's narration did it credit. She captured Venetia's undercurrent of laughter just as I imagined it.

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  • Janet Depiazzi
  • 07-26-22

Charming story, beautifully narrated.

Thoroughly enjoyed the wonderful narration of this story. It’s my favourite Georgette Heyer novel, and brought to life by Gemma Whelan. Highly recommended.

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  • Jane
  • 06-27-22

Delightful story

Despite having read this book many times I thoroughly enjoyed Gemma Whelan’s lively reading of Venetia. A most satisfying story with interesting characters and some wry humor it is told with good variety in the various roles. I will listen to this again and fall in love all over again with my favorite Georgette Heyer story.

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 09-29-21

They left out the best bits

I loved the abridged version but this is so much better! Laughed out loud. Wonderful.

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  • Robbie
  • 09-02-21

Excellent

Excellent story, witty and charming. Wonderful heroine.
Beautiful charming narration.
Five more words required they say before I can submit this review.