The three novels that make up The Forsyte Saga chronicle the ebbing social power of the commercial upper-middle class Forsyte family through three generations, beginning in Victorian London during the 1880s and ending in the early 1920s. Galsworthy's masterly narrative examines not only their fortunes but also the wider developments within society, particularly the changing position of women. The Forsyte Saga is a sequence of novels comprising The Man of Property (1906), In Chancery (1920), and To Let (1921) with two interludes, "Indian Summer of a Forsyte" (1918) and "Awakening", published together in 1922.
The saga begins with Soames Forsyte, a successful solicitor who buys land at Robin Hill on which to build a house for his wife Irene and future family. Eventually, the Forsyte family begins to disintegrate when Timothy Forsyte, the last of the old generation, dies at the age of 100.
In these novels, John Galsworthy documented a departed way of life, that of the affluent middle class that ruled England before the 1914 war. The class is criticized on account of its possessiveness, but there is also nostalgia because Galsworthy, as a man born into the class, could also appreciate its virtues.
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
1 out of 5 stars
By Angela on 04-07-10

not for me

I really fancied escaping into the Forsyte Saga, but could barely get past the first few sentences in the sample. This narrator has succeeded in producing the worst rendition of a book I have heard in a long while.

I hate that about audio books - sometimes the narrators don't seem to have a clue how to put any natural expression in. I won't be buying this and reminds me to be extra careful to listen to the samples in future. I would give it no stars but was forced to pick one!

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14 of 14 people found this review helpful

3 out of 5 stars
By Elizabeth on 12-03-09

I don't know about the content...

I was really looking forward to this epic listen! But I just couldn't get on with the narrator - found his voice incredibly irritating - so gave up about half an hour in. Would urge others to listen to the short excerpt to judge for themselves whether they feel the same.
If you don't find him grating, go ahead and purchase this - it is excellent value for a classic and lengthy novel(s)

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11 of 11 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Kay in DC on 02-03-06

A delight

I came to this one with no prior exposure to Galsworthy. Had never seen the BBC version or read it. I expected a Merchant & Ivory experience. I was so intrigued to find that, instead of being melodramatic or stuffy, it's a wickedly funny satire. I grinned from start to finish. The narrator is perfect. This type of humor has to be delivered deadpan. It is a family saga with all the tragedies and connections that entails, and the plot is wonderful. I'm surprised, however, that nobody had ever told me it's funny. Oh well. As James Forsyte would say, "I don't know. Can't tell. Nobody tells me ANYTHING."

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22 of 22 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By EJH on 06-07-05

A great work.

This is a long audiobook you will be sorry to see end. The characters are wonderfully developed and the era is convincingly described. The interlude "Indian Summer of a Forsyte" is one of the most moving audio books I have heard.
It takes about thirty minutes to get used to the narrator and the long list of characters. But after that you are hooked.

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18 of 18 people found this review helpful

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