The Small House At Allington
- Narrated by: Timothy West
- Series: Chronicles of Barsetshire, Book 5, Audible Exclusive - Chronicles of Barsetshire, read by Timothy West, Book 5
- Length: 23 hrs and 39 mins
- Unabridged Audiobook
- Release date: 21-11-08
- Language: English
- Publisher: Audible Studios
- Whispersync for Voice-ready
The spirited Lily Dale, who longs to be loved, is devastated when her fiancé, the self-interested Adolphus Crosbie, jilts her for the aristocratic Lady Alexandrina. Although heartbroken, Lily still loves Crosbie and believes she must remain single despite him being unworthy of her affections. Even when the more deserving John Eame presents himself, she is still unable to see past her feelings for Crosbie.
Meanwhile, Lily's sister Bell is also under pressure to marry for money, not for love. With an array of wonderful subplots, this audiobook is full of subtle humour as well as heartbreak.
The Small House at Allington is the fifth audiobook in the series known as the Chronicles of Barsetshire and as usual, Trollope shows his skill at analysing the thoughts and emotions of his characters, a craft that makes them appear truly life-like. Each character feels human, even Crosbie who also suffers himself for the mistakes he makes. Trollope possesses the ability to take everyday events and turn them into a gripping tale.
The novel was written at the height of Trollope's popularity and contains one of his most admired heroines, Lily Dale. Former British Prime Minister, John Major, declared it his favourite book, propelling it back into the limelight in the 1990s.
Timothy West is prolific in film, television, theatre, and audiobooks. He has narrated a number of Anthony Trollope's classic audiobooks, including the six Chronicles of Barsetshire and The Pallisers series. He has also narrated volumes of Simon Schama's A History of Britain and John Mortimer's Rumpole on Trial.
Timothy West's theatrical credits include King Lear, The Vote, Uncle Vanya, A Number, Quarter, and Coriolanus and his films include Ever After, Joan Of Arc, Endgame, Iris, and The Day of the Jackal. On television, Timothy has appeared in Broken Biscuits (BBC), Great Canal Journeys (across 3 Series), and the regular role of Stan Carter on EastEnders (BBC).
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Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Jill on 19-03-09
Lily & co
Trollope writes the most wonderful women characters - far more varied and three-dimensional than Dickens - and makes them speak with individual voices. Timothy West manages to present each one so sympathetically and distinctively that it seems hard to believe they've been 'dead' for a century and a half or thereabouts. And he does the men just as well...the world-weary Adolphus, the testy and inarticulate Squire, the elderly but enthusiastic Earl and the half-baked but endearing not-hero, Johnny Eames.
This novel is less political and less satirical than the others in the Barchester cycle, and you just surrender to the enjoyment of letting Trollope and West, between them, engage your sympathy and interest in these memorable characters and the drama that flows from them. Wonderful.
26 of 26 people found this review helpful
By Lesley on 20-11-13
Great story and characters
Where does The Small House At Allington rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?
I really enjoyed listening to this, Timothy West is a great narrator, I got to know the characters and was upset when I reached the end. They were all real, sharing their emotions and thoughts and didn't want to lose them.
I listened to it while on the bus going to work as I can't read while travelling - it makes me feel sick. The journey passed all too quickly.
What was one of the most memorable moments of The Small House At Allington?
Lily's reaction to the news of Adolphus in London. Most people might think it wasn't proper but I could understand how she felt and why.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Tad Davis on 22-05-09
Timothy West is perfect for Trollope!
I thought Simon Vance was a good narrator for Trollope, but Timothy West is better. I could, and did, listen to this one for hours at a time, and then went out and downloaded the rest of the Barset novels with Timothy West as narrator.
Trollope is a fascinating writer. I understand that Stephen King doesn't think much of him. He digresses a lot, and he addresses the reader directly in ways that drove my undergraduate Victorian Novel instructor (a fan of Henry James) up the wall. But his characters are all delightfully alive, his women characters especially full of vinegar, and he is very much grounded in the real world of rural communities, organizational politics, and money. There are many times (especially with Timothy West's narration) that he is laugh-out-loud funny. I only wish there were an equally accomplished audiobook production of the Palliser series, which is a sort of sequel to the Barset novels.
18 of 18 people found this review helpful
By Benedict on 27-07-09
One of the great novels and great readers
My goodness, what exquisite writing!
Anthony Trollope is a new discovery for me. His sense of humor and emotional tone are striking and wonderful.
Trollope has an amazing ability to dip a "spoon" into the bowl of life, pull out what comes and remark precisely on what he has found. He at one point is so sensitive about the troubles of Love, and on another occasion is very severe about his characters' character (if I may say).
He does not present us with the usual endings for novels so you have to get to the end of the book and cannot even guess how it will end.
The reader Timothy West is also a very great discovery for me. I read along with him on Gutenberg.org and realized I could never have gotten the characters' "voice" without Timothy West's great artistry. He brings out the emotional element of Trollope's writing masterfully.
Further to Trollope, I am amazed how he draws out life's contradictions in matters of Love. In this character, money does not matter. In the other character, money brings love. I wonder if Trollope was the inventor of every cliche we have ever heard regarding "Love." Money does not bring happiness, we want to believe. On another moment, we see how money breeds love.
Yet we are rewarded with the results of our own integrity towards others, Trollope seems to say.
13 of 13 people found this review helpful