The air raid siren that pierces the English night sky comes as no surprise to young Harry Baguely. Ever since Hitler began sending his warplanes to raid London, Harry has become an old hand at running to his family’s bomb shelter and waiting for the attacks to end. This time, though, Harry’s family doesn’t make it to the shelter. A war orphan with nowhere to go and only a lonely dog for a friend, Harry decides to make a courageous journey up the English coast. He is looking for a place to call home, a safe place far away from the danger and confusion of the city. But when he finds it, will it be worth the struggle?
In Harry’s encounters with the frightened civilians and weary soldiers of war-torn England, Robert Westall draws a compelling portrait of the devastating effects of war on children. An ALA Best Book for Young Adults and an American Booksellers Pick of the Lists, The Kingdom by the Sea is both a powerful historical record and a moving tale of one boy’s adventure.
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It's impossible to compare, though the characters are brought to life by the narrator in the audio and the tale really trips along.
The strength of Westall's writings was that he was writing from his own experiences as a war child growing up in the North East of England. his narrative is rich, his characters are strong and believable.
Ron Keith's delivery is superb throughout, having an English Narrator is essential (something lacking in one or two other of Westall's audiobooks available here), more so a narrator that doesn't go overboard with regional accents but gets them spot on.
Yes, and I did.
A truly magical story full of adventure and hope. Sadly a fairly weak ending lets the overall tale down, yet it is still a sadly overlooked work. Westall truly catches the wartime zeitgeist as a backdrop to his gentle piece of fiction.
Yes. Ron Keith's accent really brought the narration to life plus, he was easy to listen to. Keith's voice was cosy and familiar, like a friendly grandfather.
Experience changes us and can change our relationships and that you don't need to travel far from home to encounter new experiences.
Yes, in fact I listened to a good 4 hours in one sitting.
Watch Westall's 'Joby' on Youtube.