Listen free for 30 days

Listen with a free trial

One credit a month, good for any title to download and keep.
Unlimited listening to the Plus Catalogue - thousands of select Audible Originals, podcasts and audiobooks.
Exclusive member-only deals.
No commitment - cancel anytime.
Buy Now for £25.99

Buy Now for £25.99

Pay using card ending in
By completing your purchase, you agree to Audible's Conditions of Use and authorise Audible to charge your designated card or any other card on file. Please see our Privacy Notice, Cookies Notice and Interest-based Ads Notice.

Summary

Brought to you by Penguin. 

The new novel from Salley Vickers, Sunday Times best-selling author of The Librarian.

Artist, Hassie Day and her sister, Margot, buy a rambling, run-down Jacobean house in Hope Wenlock on the Welsh Marches. While Margot continues her London life in high finance, Hassie is left alone to work the large, long-neglected garden. She is befriended by eccentric, sharp-tongued Miss Foot, who recommends Murat, an Albanian migrant, out of place in the village, to help Hassie in the garden.

As Hassie works in the garden alongside Murat, she begins to ruminate on her past life, her hostile mother, her diffident father and the sibling rivalry that tainted her childhood. Most of all, she begins to analyse the love affair that ended leaving her with painful, unanswered questions.

In Murat's peaceful company, she discovers resemblances between her plight and his, and as she works the garden and walks in the mysterious ancient nearby wood, she begins to explore the history of the house and its former lands, and old hurts fade as she experiences the healing power of nature and learns of other, hidden worlds.

In her mesmerising new book Salley Vickers, the best-selling author of The Librarian and The Cleaner of Chartres, writes with the profound psychological insight and sense of the numinous power of place that is the hallmark of all her novels.

©2021 Salley Vickers (P)2021 Penguin Audio

Critic reviews

"Salley Vickers sees with a clear eye and writes with a light hand. She's a presence worth cherishing." (Philip Pullman)

More from the same

What listeners say about The Gardener

Average customer ratings
Overall
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    26
  • 4 Stars
    13
  • 3 Stars
    4
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0
Performance
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    21
  • 4 Stars
    13
  • 3 Stars
    4
  • 2 Stars
    1
  • 1 Stars
    1
Story
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    25
  • 4 Stars
    12
  • 3 Stars
    3
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

a mystical morality tale

Hassie and her sister Margot are restoring their old family home on the Welsh Marshes, My headline isn't flattering.

There's a great deal to praise in Salley Vickers' new novel. Hassie's love affair with a married man and its aftermath is delicate and moving; the healing powers of the garden which she and the Albanian immigrant Murat restore are beautifully detailed; the descriptions of nature, trees, flowers, sky, colours, water and streams are tender and keenly observed; her childhood with her unpleasant mother, sibling rivalry and loving father is also vivid and real.

All well and good, so why am I disappointed? What spoiled it for me was the heavy-handed morality tale surrounding both Murat and the apparently feral and vicious little local girl. I felt there was an element of preaching which I resented. As for the sudden change of gear into mystical mystery almost at the very end: it totally lost me.

The author isn't always the best choice for a narrator, but Salley Vickers makes for pleasant listening.

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

LovedThis. Slightly mystical no over explaining

Interesting exploration of abandonment, loneliness and finding yourself. A gentle story with fulsome characters. Love the writers voice.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Fabulous

I can recommend this story. I am a fan of S V and enjoyed her narration.