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The Man in the Wooden Hat

Narrated by: Bill Wallace
Series: Old Filth, Book 2
Length: 6 hrs and 50 mins
4.8 out of 5 stars (8 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Filth (Failed in London, Try Hong Kong) is a successful lawyer when he marries Elisabeth in Hong Kong soon after the war. Reserved, immaculate, and courteous, Filth finds it hard to demonstrate his emotions.

But Elisabeth is different - a free spirit. She was brought up in the Japanese internment camps, which killed both her parents but left her with a lust for survival and an affinity with the Far East. No wonder she is attracted to Filth's hated rival at the bar - the brash, forceful Veneering. Veneering has a Chinese wife and an adored son - and no difficulty whatsoever in demonstrating his emotions....

How Elisabeth turns into Betty and whether she remains loyal to stolid Filth or is swept up by caddish Veneering makes for a pause-resisting plot in a perfect novel which is full of surprises and revelations as well as the humour and eccentricities for which Jane Gardam's writing is famous.

©2009 Jane Gardam (P)2014 Audible, Inc.

What listeners say about The Man in the Wooden Hat

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Start with book one Old Filth

What made the experience of listening to The Man in the Wooden Hat the most enjoyable?

The writer cleverly went back and told the same story but from a different character's perspective, it changed your mind about things you had concluded, so well done, have never read a book that has done this before

Who was your favorite character and why?

I love all 3 of the main characters

Which scene did you most enjoy?

The scene when Old Filth visits his arch rival after locking himself out, but to appreciate that you had to have listened to the first book

Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Oh yes, Filth's enduring love for his wife, and hers for him

Any additional comments?

Love it thank you Jane Gardam and Bill Wallace. My God, Bill does a splendid job of acting this book, he played female parts so well I forgot I was listening to a man's voice.

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  • barbara
  • 27-10-2017

A must read .. i was transported to another time & place

this & the first of the trilogy & was immensely enjoyable .. the characters come to life before your eyes & the narration is sublime . Bill Wallace will be in my top 10 of narrators from now on . I will be saving the book 3 for a long journey though Jane Gardam has written other stories & i’ve no doubt they too will be in my library soon .

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  • Mr. A. J. Fleming
  • 06-09-2020

beautiful and spellbinding

Beautifully written and so beautifully read, it captures the lives of the characters and draws the reader into their world. It is such a compassionate book, full of understanding of that generation and each word and sentence worth listening to.

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  • Juliet
  • 25-07-2020

Can’t Fault this Book

Cleverly and smoothly written. Complete story, also second in trilogy. Funny, sensitive and serious. I found all subjects covered with skill and enjoyed the imaginative and unique style. The story intertwines wonderfully with the first book yet is no repetitive in detail. Really glad to have discovered this author.

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  • Carys
  • 05-06-2020

Heart achingly good

‘Old Filth’ has been in my top 3 for years so it was with trepidation that I decided to listen to the sequel, unnaturally anxious that it might disappoint. I finished it yesterday and desperately wanted to write a review but where do you start when words fail you? As the last few lines were spoken I found myself rooted to the spot, so utterly caught up in the characters and their lives I was suspended in time. As I was, unfortunately, about to serve dinner I had to put my feelings on hold and then wait 5 hours until I climbed in to bed that night to pick up where I left off. Just so you know, I don’t cry but the minute my thoughts returned to Filth and Betty I started to weep uncontrollably and couldn’t stop. I have never read any book that made me ache so much. To say that ‘Wooden Hat’ is poignant, heartfelt and honest does not do it justice. It resonated with me in several ways so I guess I was destined to have a strong reaction to it but I am unapologetic about that. Jane Gardam’s masterpiece touched my heart, for which I am eternally grateful. READ IT!

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  • coconsult
  • 23-01-2019

Old Filth Book 2

Fills ina lot of the gaps in Book1. Very well read by Bill Wallace. Looking forward to Book 3.

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  • Judi
  • 10-06-2018

LOVED OLD FILTH, DISAPPOINTED IN THE 2nd Part

Love the subject matter, not one seen, or read often and the first part with its differing time spans and switching from one to another works in this case. Great story, good narrative but this second part was disappointing as it seems to rush through Betty's life and does not give her as much credence as I believe she deserves. Will wait awhile to 'read' part three.