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Exclusively from Audible A vivid and affectionate portrait of the residents of an English country town in the mid th century, Cranford describes a community dominated by its independent and refined women, relating the adventures of Miss Matty and Miss Deborah, two middle aged spinster sisters striving to live with dignity in reduced circumstances Through a series of satirical vignettes, Gaskell sympathetically portrays changing small town customs and values in mid Victorian England, in a community governed by old fashioned habits and dominated by friendships between women Her wry account of rural life is undercut, however, by tragedy with such troubling events as Matty s bankruptcy, the death of Captain Brown and the unwitting cruelty of Peter Jenkyns Gaskell was an accomplished writer who had many of her stories published in Charles Dickens magazine Household Words She was also friends with Charlotte Bront and after her death, her father, Patrick Bront , chose Gaskell to write The Life of Charlotte BrontNarrator Biography Prunella Scales is a classically trained stage actress but is best known for her role as Sybil Fawlty in Fawlty Towers and for her role as Queen Elizabeth II in A Question of Attribution, for which she was nominated for a BAFTA Her film appearances have included Stiff Upper Lips, Howards Endand WolfShe was awarded the CBE for her services to drama inand the Patricia Rothermere Award for her contributions to British Theatre inMore recent appearances have included the mini series The Shell Seekers, a production of Carrie s War at the Apollo Theatreand Horrid Henry The MovieJulian Barnes The Lemon Table and Anne Fine s Charm School are among the many audiobooks Prunella Scales has narrated Erst einmal zur Ausgabe sie ist toll verarbeitet und auch konzipiert Mit viel Bonusmaterial siehe look inside Blick ins Buch Das Papier ist glatt Wirklich sehr sch n Auch sind hinten viele Erkl rungen, die den Text besser verst ndlich machen und Referenzen zu Gaskells Leben aufzeigen.Nun zum Werk selbst Wie es aus dem zuvor genannten Bonusmaterial hervorgeht, war dieses Werk zun chst nicht als Buch geplant Erst viel sp ter hat man die einzelnen Beitr ge dann zusammengebastelt , daher fehlt es dem Werk meiner Meinung nach an Charakter.Es handelt sich um einzelne Erz hlungen aus dem Ort Cranford, der von Frauen nur so wimmelt Gaskell greift dabei auf Ereignisse etc aus dem Leben u.a ihrem eigenen zur ck, Namen von Orten, Menschen und Zeitschriften von damals sind jedoch ge ndert worden Wenn man wissen m chte, wie die Leute damals gelebt haben und insbesondere ber die Rolle der Frau in einem solchen Ort etwas erfahren m chte, dann muss man Cranford lieben W nscht man sich jedoch eine Geschichte mit einem Plot, einem roten Faden und einer Hauptfigur, mit der man mitfiebern kann, so ist man hier falsch Ich finde es schade, dass man die Erz hlerin nicht richtig kennen lernt und geh re damit wohl viel eher zu dieser zweiten Gruppe von Lesern Als Gaskell Austen Dickens Fan sollte man es dennoch gelesen haben Wenn man s nicht mag sieht s trotzdem noch sehr h bsch im B cherregal aus Elizabeth Gaskell s Cranford first appeared in 1851 in serialised form in the magazine Household Words which was edited by Charles Dickens, and as Cranford is a collection of short stories or vignettes, it must have worked well in a serialised format There is no real plot as such, instead the focus is on the daily lives of Miss Matty, a middle aged spinster, and on the genteel ladies of the village of Cranford, all of whom follow a strict code of social and moral conduct Noticeably, there is a distinct lack of male characters in these stories a device which allows the author to ensure her female characters take centre stage, but perhaps centre stage is too strong for the quiet adventures of this group of well mannered and very respectable ladies Some of these stories are interesting than others and some, I have to say, I found a little too sentimental for my taste however, that said, these subtle and gently humorous little tales work well for a quietly enjoyable bedtime read in fact Virginia Woolf read Mrs Gaskell when recuperating after a breakdown, finding her a modest, capable author Although I much prefer the author s substantial North and South and Wives and Daughters , I would still recommend Cranford for those looking for an effortless downtime read.3 Stars. Elizabeth Gaskell is a brilliant writer The characters dance on the page and she paints a wonderful picture of the gorgeous Cheshire It evokes a real sense of the effect of the coming of trains and the impact of the industrial revolution is almost tangible Read it people If you have seen the tv series of Cranford then you have some idea of the story, although in that another two stories by Elizabeth Gaskell was added Cranford isn t really a novel as such, it is a series of vignettes, or short stories and it was originally published from time to time in Household Words.There is not a main plot as such, because of the way it was originally composed, however that doesn t detract from it as something fun to read There is a lot of humour here, and my favourite is a cow being given clothing due to an accident This is always fun to read, and is ideal for relaxing and unwinding to.