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The Time In Between: A Novel Audiobook, by María Dueñas Extended Sample Click for printable size audiobook cover
Author: María Dueñas Narrator: Zilah Mendoza Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: November 2011 ISBN: 9781442347274
3.00048697345995 out of 53.00048697345995 out of 53.00048697345995 out of 53.00048697345995 out of 53.00048697345995 out of 5 3.00 (4,107 ratings) (rate this audio book)
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This inspiring international bestseller tells of a seemingly ordinary woman who uses her talent and courage to transform herself first into a prestigious couturier and then into an undercover agent for the Allies during World War II.

Between youth and adulthood…

At age twelve, Sira Quiroga sweeps the atelier floors where her single mother works as a seamstress. At fourteen, she quietly begins her own apprenticeship. By her early twenties she has learned the ropes of the business and is engaged to a modest government clerk. But everything changes when two charismatic men burst unexpectedly into her neatly mapped-out life: an attractive salesman and the father she never knew.

Between war and peace…

With the Spanish Civil War brewing in Madrid, Sira leaves her mother and her fiancé, impetuously following her handsome lover to Morocco. However, she soon finds herself abandoned, penniless, and heartbroken in an exotic land. Among the odd collection of European expatriates trapped there by the worsening political situation back on the Continent, Sira reinvents herself by turning to the one skill that can save her: her gift for creating beautiful clothes.

Between love and duty…

As England, Germany, and the other great powers launch into the dire conflict of World War II, Sira is persuaded to return to Madrid, where she takes on a new identity to embark upon the most dangerous undertaking of her career. As the preeminent couturier for an eager clientele of Nazi officers’ wives, Sira becomes embroiled in the half-lit world of espionage and political conspiracy rife with love, intrigue, and betrayal.

A runaway bestseller, The Time in Between is one of those rare, richly textured novels that enthrall down to the last page. María Dueñas reminds us how it feels to be swept away by a masterful storyteller.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “A wonderful novel, in the good old tradition, with intrigue, love, mystery and tender, audacious, and well-drawn characters.”

    Mario Vargas Llosa, Nobel Prize–winning author

  • “It’s exciting to find a deftly paced first novel with an engaging heroine, satisfying historical detail, and emotional balance. Love it!”

    Esmeralda Santiago, New York Times bestselling author

  • “Evocative, tender, and lush; a wonderful experience of times and lives in turmoil.”

    Diana Gabaldon, author of the New York Times bestselling Outlander novels

  • “Maria Dueñas is a true storyteller. She weaves a spell, conjuring the heat and the glamour, the hardship and the thrill of Morocco and Spain in the late 1930s. The world of Casablanca comes to life as war breaks and Sira Quiroga, a beautiful and betrayed seamstress, is forced to discover her own strength. At a time when everyone must do what they can to survive, some will go beyond. Resistance will be formed and history will be written. Read this book and prepare to be transported.”

    Kate Morton, New York Times bestselling author

  • “From a terrific opening line to the final page, chapters zip by at a pulsing pace.”

    USA Today

  • “This thrilling debut is marked by immaculate prose and a driving narrative, establishing Dueñas as a writer to watch.”

    Publishers Weekly (starred review)

  • “Packed with engaging characters, flawlessly researched, and breathlessly paced.”

    Booklist (starred review)

  • The Time in Between is an epic novel with an unlikely Spanish heroine, Sira Quiroga, that takes us through one of the most turbulent times in Europe: the onset of World War II. Sira travels on a journey through romance, love, loss, and intrigue, all while discovering traits that she never dreamed she had. I couldn’t turn the pages fast enough, and once I reached the end, I couldn’t wait to start it all over again!”

    Daisy Martinez, author of Daisy: Morning, Noon and Night and Daisy’s Holiday Cooking

  • “Engaging, romantic, vivid, and captivating. Who knew a story about a seamstress in Spain could be so intriguing and captivating? If you love thick, juicy female-led novels that sweep you away from all sense of time and responsibility, you need to read The Time in Between by María Dueñas.”

    Kathy Cano-Murillo, author of Waking Up in the Land of Glitter

  • A New York Times Bestseller

Listener Reviews

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  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Leslee | 2/9/2014

    " It took me awhile to get into this, maybe because I was impatient with the naive young character who gets herself into a bad scrape you can see coming a mile away. But it's in keeping with her time and her character. The story is about a young woman growing up, growing into herself, and becoming strong. The historical aspects of the story -- set during the Spanish Civil War and its aftermath -- give the heroine's story heft and suspense, the exotic North African setting of much of the story imbues it with spice, and her profession as a couturier adds more than a flash of color. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Leighann | 2/8/2014

    " Good characters and interesting spin on a well covered historical time. I loved the whole sewing aspect that Sira is constantly alluding to and how that plays into her final occupation. Great concise descriptions of the scenes without being overdone. I enjoyed this. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Leanne | 1/22/2014

    " This book was an easy read and I did enjoy it but felt it didn't live up to its potential. It was very predictable and, particularly the latter part, too simplistic. I wanted to be taken in by the story but just didn't find it very believable. The reader should have been credited with more intelligence. We don't need to have everything spelled out to us clumsily. It was usually obvious from her actions what Sira would have been feeling without having her repeatedly tell us. I wanted to like her but was a bit over her by the end of the book. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Amy | 1/20/2014

    " I liked reading about Spain and Morocco at the cusp of WWII; I hadn't read a book about that area before. The book was just too long--I couldn't wait to finish it and move to something else. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Katherine | 1/14/2014

    " I liked the topic very much and loved the storey line for an interesting side to the war. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jennie | 1/10/2014

    " Highly enjoyed. But from midway thru it got a little preposterous and hard to believe (from rags to dangerous spy). I did enjoy it though and had a hard time deciding between 3 and 4 stars. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Miquel | 12/24/2013

    " This book would improve enormously with more vivid dialogues, better conveying the psychology of the characters. Nevertheless, it's and enjoyable book with good atmosphere and well written settings. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Tarrant | 12/24/2013

    " Like The Pink Carnation books? Wish they were a bit better and less fluff? Want to move to a different war? This is the book. Really. Read it. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Caryn | 12/5/2013

    " This book was very wordy. At 609 pages, I feel they could have trimmed it down a bit. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lindsey | 12/4/2013

    " Sometimes the book moved a little too slowly, but I liked seeing WWII from a different perspective: that of expats who left those countries embroiled in war to take refuge in Morocco and the Spaniards who were caught between their British allies and the German invasion. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Sandi | 6/8/2013

    " This book was a five in the first third and a five in the last third. The middle third was slow and would have been easy to put down. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Karen | 5/3/2013

    " Good story about the effect of the Spanish Civil War on ordinary citizens and the work of spies in Spain as the Second World War began. I liked the brave heroine. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Allie | 3/18/2013

    " I loved this book! I felt like it was different than anything I've read and it was written beautifully. I want it to be a movie for sure. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Jackie | 10/8/2012

    " I thought it was a good storyline but I found it to be a very hard read. One really has to understand the geography of the land, the language, and cultural differences. It took me a while to finish it. I would recommend to those who enjoy stories of international characters. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Angie | 9/28/2012

    " LOVED this book. The only thing is that when you get about 1/3 of the way through, it helps to look up some of the places and people's names in Wikipedia, for those of us who don't know our Spanish history. But this was a truly fantastic book! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Addy | 8/7/2012

    " Hermosa novela! Me hizo ponerme en el lugar de alguien tan diferente a mi y admirar la fuerza de la mujer y como se puede salir adelante a pesar de las circunstancias. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Gwen | 7/11/2012

    " It took me a while to get into it but then I was hooked & didn't want it to end. It stayed with me for some time afterward, the way good stories do. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Mike Hill | 12/1/2011

    " Wonderful settings and historical background. Performance was super by Zilah Mendoza "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Judith | 11/24/2011

    " Disappointing - not particularly well written. "

About the Author

María Dueñas, the author of the New York Times bestselling novel The Time in Between, holds a PhD in English philology and is currently a professor at the University of Murcia. She has also taught at American universities, is the author of several academic articles, and has participated in various educational, cultural, and editorial projects.