The Very First Damned Thing : The Chronicles of St Mary's

  • by Jodi Taylor
  • Narrated by Jodi Taylor
  • Series: The Chronicles of St Mary's
  • 2 hrs and 31 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Audible is delighted to bring you an exclusive, author-read production of The Very First Damned Thing. Hear it here first, months ahead of the EBook publication.
Jodi Taylor reads the long-awaited prequel in her Chronicles of St Mary’s series, as Dr Bairstow struggles to set up St Mary’s as we know it in a world still scarred by the ravages of civil war.
Ever wondered how it all began? It’s two years since the final victory at the Battersea Barricades. The fighting might be finished, but for Dr Bairstow, just now setting up St Mary's, the struggle is only beginning.
How will he assemble his team? From where will his funding come? How can he overcome the massed ranks of the Society for the Protection of Historical Buildings? How do stolen furniture, a practical demonstration at the Stirrup Charge at Waterloo, students’ alcohol-ridden urine, a widowed urban guerrilla, a young man wearing exciting knitwear and four naked security guards all combine to become the St Mary’s of the future?

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

An intro....not much more

I heartily agree with other reviewers:

1 ) Don't start the series with this book - it's not the best first impression and may well turn you off the other books - which are really fun stuff.

2) Narration is fine, but better left to Zara

This book is very much a prequel, setting the back story to St Mary's, however, in order to appreciate the little bits of humour, you do need to have listened to and have an appreciation of the normal antics of St Marys - otherwise the humour / references will seem flat and out of place.

Jodi Taylor narrates her own work, which is admirable, and there is nothing obviously wrong with it - however, if you've listened to the other books in the series, it's immediately apparent that this narration lacks some of the energy and quirkiness which Zara's narration lends to the series. Given that the other books are told from Max's point of view, and this one told by Dr Bairstow, it makes sense to have a different narrator, however perhaps a male narrator would have been more appropriate? Jodi does a good enough job though, and as the author, I respect her choice to narrate it herself.

If you're a fan of the series, then you'll enjoy the back story, and the first meetings with some of the future key characters. It was a freebie download from audible, and therefore worth topping up my St Mary's catalogue with. Not sure it would be worth a full credit on its own though.....
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- Robyn

Don't start the series with this book

What did you like most about The Very First Damned Thing?

I loved that it filled in gaps I hadn't even realised existed!


What about Jodi Taylor’s performance did you like?

As others have said, she's not Zara Ramm, and it takes time to acclimatise. Jodi reads the book perfectly well, but she reads it, where Zara perfomrs and brings it to life. As I got into the story, I forgot that and it was fine.


Any additional comments?

Do not start the series with this book. Read them in the order they were written. This book would make abvsolutely no sense iff you hadn't read the others.

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- kate

Book Details

  • Release Date: 19-10-2015
  • Publisher: Audible Studios