Henry Pulling, a retired bank manager, meets his septuagenarian Aunt Augusta for the first time in over 50 years at his mother’s funeral. Soon after, she persuades Henry to abandon South wood, his dahlias and the Major next door to travel through Brighton, Paris, Istanbul, Paraguay...
Accompanying his aunt, Henry joins a shiftless, twilight society: mixing with hippies, war criminals and CIA men, as well as smoking pot, breaking all the currency regulations and eventually coming alive after a dull suburban life.
©1969 Graham Greene (P)2014 Audible, Inc.
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I've read this book many times, it being a personal favourite so I wasn't sure whether hearing it as well would add anything but I was wrong: Tim Piggott-Smith brought it all to life. I didn't want it to end. I'll be listening to this one again.
"greene's worst novel?"
I have read almost everything by Greene, most of it on Audiobooks, but this one severely taxed my patience. Greene seems to have padded this out ad nauseum, and if this is an attempt to write a "comic" novel, it fails wretchedly. Avoid this one like the plague --and read as many of the other Greenes as you can get your hands on--especially as Audiobooks, all of which are beautifully read.
The first section was for me, tedious and almost screamingly frustrating. Tim Pigott-Smith is a decent reader, so what is going on here for his narration to be so horrible?
Maybe this is an "interpretation"?
This audio almost went into the 'returns', and may still do so. Sometimes I do keep an awful audio because there is no other reader and if I try really hard I can enjoy the story.
What could be a light enjoyable listen, had become something other, hard work. As I am not a great fan of G G, I do worry I maybe missing something here. The Third Man was good, though it did take Orson Wells to reveal that to me. So was TP-S using the dreadful Jeeves persona to hide a great secret revelation about GG?
Well I think another narrator could do a better job on this story, and doubt there is a Damascus moment to be had.
Tim Piggot-Smith is an exquisite narrator giving life to a multitude of characters! Superb! Don't miss it!
My best friend recomended it to me over and over and over again... so there was too much hype.
I liked the charcaters, they were fun, but overall I was let down.
I am never quite sure how Graham Greene came to write this wonderfully funny novel, given the tone of all the other novels he produced. All wonderful of course, but not known for their humour! Tim Pigott Smith's reading is superb, especially the wonderful Wordsworth, although there were times when I wished I want Aunt Agatha sounded slightly less like Lady Bracknell. A beautifully written novel beautifully read.
"Funny & entertaining! Brilliantly read!"
Tim Pigott-Smith brings every character to life and does a superb job at making this lovely book even more funny and entertaining!
Laughed Out loud!
beautifully written, engrossing storyline and an excellent narration. bloody well done and a well done to Mr greene.
"Very enjoyable, and fun"
This is quite different to my normal reading, but I did enjoy it immensely. Quite a far fetched tale, but nevertheless one took to the 'cast' and it was great fun to watch the staid ex bank manager 'loosen up' and surprise even himself with his exploits!!
One to listen to again!
A truly memorable performance from Pigott-smith whose convincing range and depth made this one of my most enjoyed audio books. Even though I had read this before many years ago, I found myself totally absorbed and still curious to all its oddities and tenderness.
I read the book several years ago but with a long drive ahead of me i thought this would make a good listen. For the first few minutes I was unsure if I had made a good choice, but pretty soon I warmed to Tim Piggot Smith and his reading. by the end of the book I was that it was over. his voice characterisations were perfect and added to the excellent story
"Pleasing, but not a patch on Our Man in Havana"
This was a continuation of my audiobook journey with Graham Greene. I'd never read him before and I was very taken with my first (Our Man in Havana), enjoyed The End of the Affair and The Quiet American, and now my enthusiasm is starting to wane with Travels with My Aunt. To be fair, my audiobook selections have been based on how well rated the audiobook performances are, so much of my reaction might be down to the audiobook adaptation. That said, Tim Piggot-Smith was surprisingly versatile in his reading of Travels with My Aunt. I enjoyed his performance of the tale.
The material is of its time, undoubtedly, so I don't have issues with it being somewhat dated. But I saw the key plot 'hooks' approaching and then bemoaned them taking so long to arrive.
Still a pleasing listen, but not a patch on Our Man in Havana.
Yes I would. I'd even pay CTC. :)
Aunt Augusta is a fabulous character. She keeps surprising you until the end, but she is real.
He's a great reader. He transmits the changing emotions and circumstances of the characters just perfectly.
This has been just about the best thing I've got from Audible yet. So there.
"Wonderful - but not like his better known books"
This is a very funny, poignant story of what happens when a retired and rather dull bank manager meets his eccentric 'aunt', who shakes up his life and makes him question everything he has thought, believed and done in his life. Tim Piggott-Smith brings out the humour very well, so that the larger than life characters stay just on the right side of ridiculous.
"Excellent prose and a good read/listen"
What made this book enjoyable was the masterclass that Graham Green gives us in his flowing prose and characterisation. It was a pleasure to listen to and very well delivered by the narrator. In terms of a story, you get what it says on the tin, or more accurately what it says in the title. The twist that provides the interest, tension and on occasion the jeopardy, is that the elderly rather racy aunt is the one who is full of youthful spirit, compared to her somewhat repressed much younger nephew, who has led a restrained and conventional life.
My criticism is that the plot was rather un-substantive and fairly predictable. In factual/biographical travel books, that are an account of an actual journey, the lack of a plot is expected, but for some reason I wanted one here in this fictional equivalent.
I would definitely recommend this book to those who enjoy listening to good prose.
If you are looking for a Greene novel with a better plot then go for Our Man in Havana. Overall, an enjoyable book that is worth listening to.
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