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Download Park Lane Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample Park Lane Audiobook, by Frances Osborne Click for printable size audiobook cover
2.25 out of 52.25 out of 52.25 out of 52.25 out of 52.25 out of 5 2.25 (16 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Frances Osborne Narrator: Susan Duerden Publisher: Tantor Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: October 2012 ISBN: 9781452678849
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When eighteen-year-old Grace Campbell arrives in London in 1914, she's unable to fulfill her family's ambitions and find a position as an office secretary. Lying to her parents and her brother, Michael, she takes a job as a housemaid at Number 35, Park Lane, where she is quickly caught up in lives of its inhabitants-in particular, those of its privileged son, Edward, and daughter, Beatrice, who is recovering from a failed relationship that would have taken her away from an increasingly stifling life. Desperate to find a new purpose, Bea joins a group of radical suffragettes and strikes up an intriguing romance with an impassioned young lawyer. Unbeknownst to each of the young women, the choices they make amid the rapidly changing world of World War I will connect their chances at future happiness in dramatic and inevitable ways. Download and start listening now!


Quotes & Awards

  • Set in the same time period as the popular Downton Abbey television series, this title will appeal to fans of its era. Booklist
  • “Susan Duerden gives a perfect performance…[She]narrates the present-tense writing with an enticing sense of urgency, sweeping the listener into the immediacy of the story.”


  • “Reading in a British accent that reflects class distinctions between characters, Duerden’s pace moves the plot forward. An appealing choice for historical-fiction and romance fans and those familiar with Osborne’s The Bolter.”


  • “[Osborne] masterfully intertwines the lives of her heroines with historical events and figures, which lends credibility to the plot and the characters she has created. Osborne’s efforts are solid, and her book will appeal to both historical fiction buffs and romance enthusiasts alike.”

    Kirkus Reviews

Listener Opinions

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Jane Arschavir | 2/10/2014

    " Took me about 200 pages to get into this book. It was ok, reasonably predictable plot, satisfactory ending. Killed a bit of time while I was ill. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Kate | 1/30/2014

    " was going to give it 3 stars but the ending slapped it down to 2! "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Emily | 1/29/2014

    " This book should have been right up my alley, but alas, it was not to be. The pace is very, very slow-going. It picks up a bit at the end, but I had to force myself to get to that point. As a person who works daily in the written word, I noticed some editing errors and just felt the novel could have done with a good trimming in places. I also didn't like the ending, but that is just my personal taste. Overall, I was disappointed. I felt misled by the comparisons I heard to "Downton Abbey" and the seemingly good praise from Julian Fellowes. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Joanray04 | 1/28/2014

    " I enjoyed this book of historical fiction. It starts in 1914 when England experiences the first challenges to their staid, rigid class conventions. It focuses on two different attitudes to the burgeoning women's movement from the radical suffragettes to those who propose more peaceful methods. A young woman from the pedigreed upper class, Beatrice, struggles to find her place and purpose in the world through her involvement with women's rights and WW I. She moves from a life of parties and leisure, where her only purpose is find a suitable husband, to exhaustive, terrifying work as an ambulance driver in France. She makes a different life for herself than her strong willed mother could ever imagine.. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Julia | 1/19/2014

    " This book was a big let down. I heard an interview with the author on NPR and so I had high hopes. Ms. Osborne is a historical writer and the book was described as a cross between "Downton Abbey" and "Upstairs Downstairs". Sounds like a winning combination. Sadly, it was very apparent that Ms. Osborne is not used to writing fiction. While she researched the book well and included things that are factually true, she did not develop the characters well at all and the book jumps around a lot. It seemed that Ms. Osborne tried to both cover too much time and too many details about specific times so that the story isn't very coherent. Important things would be happening and all of the sudden 6 months or more would pass and the story would jump with very little connection to what happened before it. The worst offense in my mind though, was the very disappointing ending. I thought the book could redeem itself with a good ending but the ending was a huge letdown. I only gave this book 2 stars (instead of 1) because the audiobook version was very entertaining and I think there are some very interesting themes about the changing roles of women that I look forward to discussing in book group. Other than that, find a better book to fill the void of Downton Abbey. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Gini | 1/11/2014

    " Just so-so. I found in the end I just didn't care about the main characters. Not enough character development. Too many unresolved threads. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Lola425 | 1/9/2014

    " zzzzzzzz. I can't believe how bored I was with this book. I read Osborne's The Bolter and liked it. Her nonfiction read better than her fiction. I felt like there was no life in the characters. Disappointed. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Mfbirkett | 1/1/2014

    " I read this as it was supposed to appeal to fans of Downton Abbey. It was long and never-ending for me. There were of course, many characters and story lines. I'm glad to have it finished and to move on to something new. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Carla | 12/25/2013

    " Particularly interesting are the descriptions of Emmeline Pankurst's suffragists, and the violent times in England before WW1. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Margaret | 12/6/2013

    " I go back and forth on this. Did I like it or not? I loved the time period and the story line, but I didn't like some of the choices the characters made and I just wanted a good, crisp ending and this book doesn't do that. I did like how it showed World War I and suffrage through the eyes of women. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Laura Lee | 11/24/2013

    " A poor man's Dowton Abbey. Liked her first book better. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Leslie | 10/14/2013

    " stopped really reading after 80 pages, then skimmed to find out what happens (loosely). too slow-moving, and not well- or interestingly-written enough to hold my attention through the slowness. also, minimal character development. not good enough as a downton substitute! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Sedaj | 7/8/2013

    " Whew! Finally finished this book. I grew to love the characters, but the plot was dreadfully slow. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Julia | 5/2/2013

    " When you just can't wait for more Downton Abbey. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Brandi | 3/22/2013

    " This is a cheap imitation of Downton Abbey! "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 K617l | 2/12/2013

    " Couldn't finish it.....nearly died of boredom! Odd writing style too. "

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About the Author

Frances Osborne was born in London and studied philosophy and modern languages at Oxford University. She is the bestselling author of Lilla’s Feast and The Bolter, which was A San Francisco Chronicle Best Book of the Year. Her articles have appeared in the Daily Telegraph, The Times, The Independent, the Daily Mail, and Vogue. She lives in London with her husband, George, and their two children.

About the Narrator

Susan Duerden is an actress and an Earphones Award–winning audiobook narrator. Her reading of The Tiger’s Wife by Téa Obreht earned her an AudioFile Best Voice Award and a Booklist Editors’ Choice Award. She has won ten AudioFile Earphones Awards. Here career spans film, television, theater, voice-overs, and animation. She has played critically acclaimed and award-winning theatrical roles on London’s West End and Off Broadway; acted in the features Lovewrecked and Flushed Away; and held a recurring role on ABC’s Lost.