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The Children of Green Knowe

Written by: Lucy M. Boston
Narrated by: William Franklyn
Length: 3 hrs and 44 mins

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Publisher's Summary

'What if my great-grandmother is a witch!' thought Tolly, as he journeyed by train across the waterlogged countryside towards his great-grandmother's house. She wasn't a witch, but both she and her old house, Green Knowe, were full of a very special kind of magic. And Green Knowe turned out not to be the lonely place Tolly had imagined it to be. There were other children living in the house - children who had been happy there centuries before....

©1954 L.M. Boston (P)2014 Audible, Inc.

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  • RB Vancouver
  • 18-01-19

A great find

I'm delighted that Audible has this excellent, thoughtful book available. I enjoyed it as an adult. It's also perfect for a thoughtful young person. The reading by William Franklyn is very well done too, and sensitive to the material.

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  • Roses
  • 05-12-13

Needs a new narrator

What did you like most about The Children of Green Knowe?

I have adored this story ever since I first heard it on Jackanory in 1966. It predates Harry Potter as a children's story that is just as magical for grown ups. It's a ghost story about a little boy who finds himself spending Christmas with his great grandmother in a 1,000 year old house (which really exists and you can visit it) - and the ghosts of his ancestors. The writing and story telling are masterful and it's wonderful for dark winter evenings.Unfortunately William Franklyn isn't quite up to the job. He's great at narrative, but not good at female voices - he only has one voice for all the female characters. And his singing is execrable; flat as a pancake and no idea of the well known tunes he's supposed to sing. A little more attention to detail, such as having someone play the flute and a few children singng would make all the difference. And an actor or actress who can do more than one voice.

Who was your favorite character and why?

I love them all

Who might you have cast as narrator instead of William Franklyn?

Stephen Fry or Samantha Bond plus a decent flautist and some child singers.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Oh yesssss

9 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Jonathan
  • 27-12-12

The perfect ghost story for children at Christmas

I used to listen to this as a kid, the opening takes me straight bk to rainy afternoons the reader has the perfect voice full of warmth and charm. I' d checked every few months for it for about three years now and when it came on I didn't wait for credits. I brought it straight away for early Christmas gift to may self.

4 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Rachel Byron
  • 31-01-20

Wonderful story needing a better narrator

This timeless story, so sensitively written by Lucy Boston, gently takes the reader into a world of snow, friendship and magic. I grew up treasuring this book, reading and rereading many times over.

Whilst William Franklyn does justice to some sections of the story (e.g. the ‘action’ sequences), much of the beauty of the quieter scenes and nuances of the dialogue are lost. Please Audible, commission a sensitive narration!

1 person found this helpful

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  • Diane Williams
  • 10-01-20

Christmas tradition

I have read this book every Christmas since childhood,but thought I would try the audio version this year. It did not disappoint..William Franklin’s narration is superb. Highly recommend.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 28-11-19

Superb and timeless children’s classic

It’s the low dark end of the year before Christmas grips and a perfect time to reread this classic. An essential part of my annual reading list. Just creepy enough and brings a tear when the past and present blend together to a satisfying Christmas conclusion.

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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Claire
  • 16-03-19

A ghostly Christmas escape

I was unfamiliar with this story, and felt compelled to seek it out once I'd heard family discussing it over Christmas - from the opening chapter I was expecting a mystery to solve in the vein of 'the box of delights', but it turned out to be much more homely than that: a charming story of a young boy discovering his family house and its varied occupants throughout the ages. Beautifully read by William Franklyn (of course some musical effects would have elevated the production and modernised it, but the tale is just as fine without) - but I do recommend picking up a physical copy if you can, for the accompanying illustrations by the author's son. I read that the sequel won the Carnegie medal for fiction, so I will be seeking that out next Christmas when I'm in quaint fantasy mood!

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  • Hengestine
  • 19-11-16

Wonderful

I love this story, it is Christmas to me. It's a lovely story, poignant in places but not a sad tale on the contrary it is uplifting. The narration is also spot on.