Longlisted – Baileys Women’s Prize 2014
Penguin presents the unabridged, downloadable audiobook edition of M. J. Carter's The Strangler Vine, read by the actor Sam Dastor.
India, 1837: William Avery, a fresh young officer in the East India Company, arrives in Calcutta expecting to be seduced by its ancient traditions. Nine months later he hasn't learnt a word of Hindoostani, is in terrible debt, and longs to return home before the cholera epidemic finishes him off.
A few months earlier, so rumour has it, the infamous and disgraced poet Xavier Mountstuart leaves Calcutta in order to track down the last of the remaining Thugs, a sinister secret fraternity notorious for strangling thousands of travellers. But after reaching the kingdom of Jubbulpore, Mountstuart mysteriously disappears.Then the Company leads Avery to Jeremiah Blake, an unruly ex-Captain who has embraced native life. Their mission? To cover 700 miles of treacherous road in three weeks and find Mountstuart. A more unlikely duo couldn't be imagined, but they must bury their differences if they wish to succeed - for all is not as it seems, and at the rotten heart of everything lies the secret of the macabre Thugs....
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"Ripping Yarn" revises our view of Brits in India
One of my most favourite audio books - loved it!
There's nothing to dislike: there is history, adventure, travel, strong characters, murder and mystery. All set in Victoria's Indian Empire with jewels and opium and dust. Most of all it is about the building of an unlikely friendship between the two main characters.
I loved his accent and narration. It seems perfect for the place and time in India.
Still waiting for M J Carter's sequel to be turned into an audio book and read by Sam Dastor. Why is it taking so long?!
- Two Tone