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Extended Audio Sample Double Vision Audiobook, by Pat Barker Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (382 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Pat Barker Narrator: Johanna Ward Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: February 2015 ISBN: 9781504627139
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This gripping novel explores the effects of violence on the journalists and artists who have dedicated themselves to representing it.

In the aftermath of September 11, reeling from the effects of reporting from New York City, two British journalists, a writer, Stephen Sharkey, and a photographer, Ben Frobisher, part ways. Stephen returns to England shattered; he divorces his duplicitous wife and quits his job. Ben follows the war on terror to Afghanistan and is killed.

Stephen retreats to a cottage in the country to write a book about violence, and what he sees as the reporting journalist’s or photographer’s complicity in it. Ben’s widow, Kate, a sculptor, lives nearby, and as she and Stephen learn about each other their world speedily shrinks, in pleasing but also disturbing ways. The sinister events that begin to take place in this small town, so far from the theaters of war Stephen has retreated from, will force him to act instinctively, violently, and to face his most painful revelations about himself.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “[A] gripping novel, noteworthy for the author’s gifts as a stylist and her formidable, engaged intelligence.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “Johanna Ward adds even more layers to this book with an extraordinary performance of the material…When she performs dialogue, her characters betray complex emotions and longings in the face of crisis…She embraces Barker’s prose, coaxes more meaning from it, and makes us understand it more fully.”

    AudioFile

  • “This taut, contemporary novel translates beautifully into audio…British narrator Ward captures the feeling of menace. Due to Ward’s performance, listeners care about the characters and their unsettled lives.”

    Booklist

  • “Ward is one of the best British readers of audiobooks and she gives her usual professional polish to this story.”

    Kliatt

Listener Opinions

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Kim | 1/27/2014

    " Disappointing. Very interesting characters but as other reviewers have said all dressed up and nowhere to go. I think the fly leaf is completely misleading, really raised expectations that were completely unfulfilled. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Daniel Probst | 1/3/2014

    " I really liked the themes in this book... of foreign reporting & war trauma, different people affecting each others lives, people at odds with each other. But, at the end, I didn't find meaning in all the disparate events and reactions. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Forbes George | 12/12/2013

    " Not the first time I have read this book but keep being drawn back to it. War reporter, Stephen Sharkey, returns to the countryside in the north of England to recuperate from and write a book about his experiences covering 9/11 and more particularly his experiences in war-torn Bosnia. Barker examines how being part of such violence, even as an observer, impacts our lives and our relationships with others. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Rob | 11/14/2013

    " Pat Barker has always appealed as the author of novels of nuance and subtlety but which don't become over-literary in a "school of creative writing" way. But she excels herself in this book. It's about lots of things: why people cover wars and what covering wars sometimes does to their minds; about love and loyalty. But it's also a very good yarn. Pat Barker has an old-fashioned and utterly welcome belief in plot and comprehensibility. Double Vision is a very good read - plus a lot more. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Stephanie Rosales | 10/7/2013

    " not impressed with the ending. It felt very abrupt to me and I didn't feel like the loose ends of various stories got tied up... "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 miriam | 9/9/2013

    " Exceptional writing always makes Pat Barker's books rewarding to read, and I was sympathetic to the characters here. But on reflection, it doesn't carry sufficient meaning or enlightenment for me to rate it more than 3 stars. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 David | 9/5/2013

    " Barker's a modern master. This one almost reaches the level of her first WWI triology... "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Corinne | 9/1/2013

    " Read it for a college english course and though it may be dark it is very interesting and worth the time. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Eliza | 8/30/2013

    " 5/20/2004: Contemporary political/journalistic/love story; suspense, lots of parallels between how one "sees" in one's own life vs how one sees as a journalist the horrors of war. Great story, very thought-provoking. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jodie | 8/24/2013

    " ok, not that memorable "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Linny | 4/6/2013

    " not as brilliant as her WW I series but liked her characters, her focus on contemporary war and scars "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Mew | 4/5/2013

    " short and fairly sweet and simple...something lacking...too many characters, not enough depth perhaps "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jane | 12/24/2012

    " The lives of some damaged people, always seeming to live in the shadow of violence and mystery. I really liked it - I feel a wave of Pat Barker reading coming on. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jana | 6/17/2012

    " Wonderful, engaging, suspenseful story about a woman sculptor, a war correspondent, photojournalist, a viccar's daughter, and a mysterious possibly dangerous man. The writing is great, almost poetic, and the characters complex. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Eric | 12/16/2011

    " Another winner from Barker. Skillfully plotted and emotionally rich, per usual. Her insight into the male psyche especially, is especially extraordinary. And the way she weaves in the multiple "doubles" suggested by the title, is both seamless and highly effective. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Cherylck | 9/23/2011

    " Booker prize winners: I find them both hits and misses. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Shelley | 9/18/2011

    " Few people can write about violence like Barker. A chilling, thoughtful book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 San | 1/16/2011

    " Not quite as good as her "Regeneration" triology, far too neat and a constrained setting (10 closely inter-related characters). "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Suzanne | 12/24/2010

    " It started out excellently, but just ended without closure for any of the characters. Written in the same style as Life Class.

    Her WWI trilogy is supposed to be excellent. I think I will try that one. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Donald | 4/20/2010

    " As usual, Barker delivers an excellent, well-written novel. She has a subtle way of giving her characters depth without the reader even realizing it. You just feel like you know them or recognize them. In my opinion, the only shortcoming was the "mystery" of the attacker. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Rachel | 3/12/2010

    " I'm not sure that her endings ever feel like concrete endings, but I love her handling of complex characterizaton and the tension between characters. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Kim | 12/30/2009

    " Disappointing. Very interesting characters but as other reviewers have said all dressed up and nowhere to go. I think the fly leaf is completely misleading, really raised expectations that were completely unfulfilled. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Stephanie | 7/21/2009

    " not impressed with the ending. It felt very abrupt to me and I didn't feel like the loose ends of various stories got tied up... "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Bezzie | 4/26/2009

    " Another Barker I couldn't put down. Finished it last night and am still mulling it over.

    But Peter--he does have quite a bit in common with Danny/Ian of Border Crossing. Same boy??? "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Laurie | 2/18/2009

    " Thought provoking tale of teh effects of war on those who have not carried the guns. "

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About the Author
Author Pat Barker

Pat Barker is an English novelist who has won the Guardian Fiction Prize and the Booker Prize. In 2000 she was named a Commander of the Order of the British Empire.

About the Narrator

Johanna Ward (a.k.a. Kate Reading) is an Audie® Award–winning narrator and has received numerous Earphones Awards from AudioFile magazine. She is also a theater actor in the Washington, DC, area and has been a member of Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company since 1987. Her work onstage has been recognized by the Helen Hayes Awards Society, among others. She and her husband live in Hyattsville, Maryland, with their two children.