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Summary

Two different worlds and two very different lives collide in Paris in this captivating novel by Danielle Steel.

Joachim von Hartmann was born and raised in Buenos Aires by his loving German mother, inseparable from his identical twin. When Joachim moves to Paris with his mother in his late teens, his twin stays behind and enters a dark world. Meanwhile, Joachim begins training to be a butler, fascinated by the precision and intense demands, and goes on to work in some of the grandest homes in England. His brother never reappears.

Olivia White has given 10 years of her life to her magazine, which failed, taking all her dreams with it. A bequest from her mother allows her a year in Paris to reinvent herself. She needs help setting up a home in a charming Parisian apartment. It is then that her path and Joachim's cross.

Joachim takes a job working for Olivia as a lark and enjoys the whimsy of a different life for a few weeks, which turn to months as the unlikely employer and employee learn they enjoy working side by side. At the same time, Joachim discovers the family history he never knew: a criminal grandfather who died in prison, the wealthy father who abandoned him, and the dangerous criminal his twin has become. While Olivia struggles to put her life back together, Joachim's comes apart.

Stripped of their old roles, they strive to discover the truth about each other and themselves, first as employer and employee, then as friends. Their paths no longer sure, they are a man and woman who reach a place where the past doesn't matter and only what they are living now is true.

©2021 Danielle Steel (P)2021 Recorded Books, Inc.

What listeners say about The Butler

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

not one of her best

overlook this one if you can. not up to her usual standard at all.

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Profile Image for Dee Mitch
  • Dee Mitch
  • 11-10-21

Equivalent to a meeting that should have been an email.

This book could have been reduced to an hour if all of the repetition had been removed.

The entire story consisted of the same words rearranged for hours.

What a disappointment and waste of time!

7 people found this helpful

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Profile Image for Cindy Brennan
  • Cindy Brennan
  • 21-10-21

Long time fan

She’s repeating things too many times. It’s getting worse with each book it seems. The story is good but the repeating drives you crazy

4 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Profile Image for Abigail Dallas
  • Abigail Dallas
  • 21-10-21

Not up to par for Danielle Steele

Extremely weak ending…rushed to publisher and it shows. Characters and story-line ended abruptly. Disappointing!

4 people found this helpful

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Profile Image for Elizabeth Law Gans
  • Elizabeth Law Gans
  • 12-11-21

Disappointing

This was the worst audio book I’ve ever purchased. Both the writing and performance were poor. Steel said the same thing over and over throughout the story. I kept waiting for it to get better and it never did. I would not recommend.

2 people found this helpful

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Profile Image for Pamela Perez
  • Pamela Perez
  • 14-10-21

Not what I expected

I have been listening to D Steel books for years. The last couple just seem so boring. Not sure what's going on but I'm torn between, should I continue to purchase and be disappointed or just find another author.

2 people found this helpful

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Profile Image for Ronnie Seitzman
  • Ronnie Seitzman
  • 03-04-22

Another wonderful novel

I have read most of the novels that Danielle Steele has written and while this is not one of the best it is definitely worth reading.

1 person found this helpful

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Profile Image for Kim Meseck
  • Kim Meseck
  • 27-02-22

A nice light read.

If you're looking for a light. easy read, this is the book. My first Danielle Steel book. (I just finished two long, detailed books, with a lot of character development.) The Butler was a nice story. Very easy to follow, a very likable main character. However, the story was slow and did take forever to move along at times. It had stalled moments, where I just wanted to give the story a little push.

The author, Danielle Steel, was often repetitive in getting her points across. You get the feeling that they're being beat into you. It felt a bit insulting to us listeners and readers of her books. It makes you wonder if she feels we're not that intelligent to remember things the first time she points them out.

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  • MLH
  • 05-12-21

enjoyable

I found it an enjoyable story. The narrator for me was very rote in his tone and inflections. That for me took away an emotional component a d made the audio experience very one dimensional.

1 person found this helpful

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Profile Image for JCM
  • JCM
  • 29-11-21

Not really about a Butler

The title is misleading. It is not really about a butler as I expected. The storyline is just average. No real substance or anything that makes you want the story not end. Normally I seem to fall in love with one of the characters and really become vested in the outcome. That didn't happen for me so in my opinion not one of the finest from DS.

Narration was good.



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  • m.webster
  • 28-11-21

Nice enough escapism & fresh from Steel

When writers choose narrators - please ensure that they are au fait with other language pronounciations. The main character had a Netherlands name but it was pronounced as if he was from India. Same happened with Deon Meyer's book where the narrator couldn't get the main characters name right. Whakeem(phonetic) is supposed to be Yoohag( g =gutteral like in french) 'um. Jeez - if rugby commentators can get it right - there is no excuse.

The book held me captured - something different and I was looking for escapism. it touched on the sad case how are traditions and what makes a country true to it's history, is waning. All round enjoyable, a little dreamy...a world very few of us know.

1 person found this helpful