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Extended Audio Sample The Trumpet-Major, by Thomas Hardy Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (803 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Thomas Hardy Narrator: Simon Vance Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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Set against the larger-than-life backdrop of the Napoleonic wars, Hardy’s only historical novel tells of the loves and sorrows of ordinary people caught in extraordinary times.

When an anticipated invasion brings several regiments to her small rural community, young country maid Anne Garland is courted by three men in uniform: the loyal trumpet-major John Loveday, his sailor-brother Bob, and cowardly Festus Derriman of the yeomanry cavalry.

Founded largely on testimony from elders known to Hardy in his childhood, The Trumpet-Major offers a complex weave of historical fact and fiction that explores the subversive effects of ordinary human desires on systematized versions of history.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Hearkening back to the Wessex of an earlier Napoleonic period, Hardy’s novel creates a homely world of likeable, though sometimes dull folk, anxious to get on with the business of falling in love despite the threat of imminent landing by the French…For readers used to Hardy’s star-crossed characters, this romance is a delightful discovery.”

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Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Esther | 2/13/2014

    " Hardy has written enough books to keep me happy for years now - and there are still more for me to read, thank goodness! There is something about him - an earthiness, a darkness, that makes his stories (which are always about the complications of human relationships, and explorations of human character weighed against fate) very satisfying and full, though not always happy. This one might be lighter than most, but I very much enjoy how he refuses to simplify relationships. I could say more, but I don't want to give the story away. This may not be my favorite of his novels, but every one has been worthwhile, and "The Trumpet Major" is no exception. It has definitely whetted my Hardy appetite. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Justin | 2/1/2014

    " Another 'minor' Hardy that is strong throughout. Captures Napoleon paranoia well, in addition to the usual star-crossed love story. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Riley | 1/15/2014

    " This book is the closest thing to soap opera of any literature I've ever read, though, admittedly, I'm not a big reader of Victorian fiction. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Scott Matthews | 1/15/2014

    " I remember the press gang action sequence as a particular high point. "

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