- Audio Download
- Listening Length: 14 hours and 31 minutes
- Program Type: Audiobook
- Version: Unabridged
- Publisher: Gallic Books
- Audible.co.uk Release Date: 4 Dec. 2013
- Language: English
- ASIN: B00H35NGO2
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank:
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The Foundling Boy Audio Download – Unabridged
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Top Customer Reviews
It is 1919. On a summer's night in Normandy, a newborn baby is left in a basket outside the home of Albert and Jeanne Arnaud. The childless couple take the foundling in, name him Jean, and decide to raise him as their own, though his parentage remains a mystery.
Though Jean's life is never dull, he grows up knowing little of what lies beyond his local area. Until the day he sets off on his bicycle to discover the world, and encounters a Europe on the threshold of interesting times .
I adored this novel. Evocative and compelling we follow Jean on a journey through life and through a very specific time in History, I was completely and utterly fascinated during the entirety of the reading experience. I have read a lot of novels set around each of the World Wars but I think this is the first for me set in a world holding its breath...and that is kind of the feeling I got throughout this story.
Jean sets off on his bicycle...what he will find we cannot imagine, and he is a perfect host on a journey of discovery. At turns irresistable, passionate, moving and eloquent you will soon find yourself lost in the pages. I say no more - if you love Historical stories you will adore this. Even if it is not your normal choice I would still recommend you give this one a try. It has a very particular feel about it and may surprise you. The sense of place is just amazing and the desriptive prose is beautiful. A character with true heart and a peek at a world now behind us makes this a heartfelt read.
When I was done I was inspired to look up some information about the author, and was surprised to find, considering the quality, that much of his work remains unavailable in English.Read more ›
The time point of this book is in the months immediately following the 1918 Armistice and it tells the story of the childhood and early adult years of its subject, Jean. At the beginning of the book, a baby is left at the doorstep of a couple who decide to keep and bring up the child. It is a story with both pathos and gentle humour and should prove to be engaging to its readers as they follow Jean through the stages of his growing up and his travels in young adulthood across a war-torn Europe trying to rebuild and to recover.
Both books share a minor and unimportant choice of presentation that appears slightly strange - there are no numbered or titled chapters.
Although this first book had not knowingly benefitted from any reviews from the British press and media, there are some from their French equivalents, all very positive. The second book had been compared with the British classic, Tom Jones and also with the writing of Flaubert and that is also substantially true of this, the earlier volume.
With its follow-up, they are possibly the best fiction works read not only this year but for several years previously.
It is set in France, in the years between the wars and has a really engaging storyline. In the summer of 1919 a newborn baby is left in a basket outside the home of a childless couple in Normandy. They take him in, call him Jean and raise him as their own in their simple but honest ways. The Foundling Boy is the story of Jean's life, that is both ordinary and fascinating, up to the outbreak of the Second World War.
There is a great cast of very different characters whose lives are intricately linked, lots of secrets and a story that twists, moves and turns in circles as lives are lived in Normandy, the South of France and London. I had my suspicions about Jean's mother from the start, but the more the story moved the less important her identity seemed. A few times we seem to get close to knowing, then off we go again in another direction satisfying Jean's thirst for adventure, so that finding out the truth doesn't seem to be as important as it was at the beginning.
This book is different to what I usually read, but I really enjoyed it, especially the passages where the author breaks off the narration to talk directly to the reader. This was different, amusing and perfect for filling in information and adding a bit extra to the extra-ordinary story of Jean's life. It is a bigger than average paperback book but I got to the end and desperately wanted to continue reading the next part of Jean's life.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Read for the book club. Wish I had good enough French to have read this without the translation. Fascinating insight into a boys life as France accelerates towards war and him... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Lynn Moran
Very French, quite enjoyed reading it but took a bit of getting into.Published 3 months ago by Danny Lownthwaite
Michel Déon, born in 1919 (as is the hero of this book), is an acclaimed and well known author in his native France but little known here, and Gallic Books are to be... Read morePublished 4 months ago by Amanda Jenkinson
Michel Déon is one of France's most prolific and esteemed living novellists, yet he is almost unknown here in the UK. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Rough Diamond
A good read. I will move on to his next book which is called the Foundling War.
The story line was good and I was involved in all the characters.
Marcel Deon is a very well known and prolific French author. This novel, one of two volumes, sets out to tell the story of a foundling and his adoptive family. Read morePublished 9 months ago by Elizabeth Webster
Not keen on translations, enjoyed bits of it but overal not something I would tell friends to read and I will not be reading the follow up.Published 16 months ago by Margaret Green