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Summary

From the Booker Prize-winning author of Offshore comes this unusual romance between the poet Novalis and his fiancée, Sophie, newly introduced by Candia McWilliam.

The year is 1794, and Fritz - passionate, idealistic and brilliant - is seeking his father's permission to announce his engagement to his heart's desire: 12-year-old Sophie. His astounded family and friends are amused and disturbed by his betrothal. What can he be thinking?

Tracing the dramatic early years of the young German who was to become the great romantic poet and philosopher Novalis, The Blue Flower is a masterpiece of invention, evoking the past with a reality that we can almost feel.

©1995 Penelope Fitzgerald; Introduction Candia McWilliam 2013; Preface Hermione Lee 2013 (P)2016 HarperCollins Publishers Limited

What listeners say about The Blue Flower

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Excellent

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One of the great novels of the 20th century – no comments necessary. Thomas Judd reads it with intelligence and sensitivity. Worth downloading even if you've read it before.

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Recommend the book but not the recording

A disappointing narrator for this wonderful book. Incongruous word stresses and embarrassing German pronunciation. Avoid.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Drone Boy
  • 25-11-20

When Historical Fiction Becomes Literature

Judd manages to do justice to Fitzgerald's immaculate prose, which is not easy. The story is a classic, and the work of one the best writers in English. The characters, which range from a small child, to a teenage girl, to an elderly Saxon patriarch, are all performed convincingly and with dramatic verisimilitude. The Blue Flower is a book you will listen to more than once.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 16-07-22

A COLOSSAL BORE

A tale full of precocious children and irritating adolescents, all rendered (with the exception of the characters' voices) in a relentlessly sing-song narration. Seriously not worth the effort. The overblown introduction is even more outrageously ridiculous and pretentious than the novel itself. Avoid at all costs.