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Audiobook Review

The Company

J.M. Varese
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average rating is 5 out of 5
average rating is 3 out of 5

Excellent, Unforgettable, Best of the nest

Very good, thoroughly enjoyed, 

Good, Solid, Enjoyed many aspects


I’ve never used the word “sumptuous” to describe a listen before, but…


🧡 This audiobook was silky and indulgent and, yes, sumptuous. The descriptions of the wallpaper, the poignant theme and the tempo of the prose, all came together to create something simultaneously haunting and poetic. I’m not usually one for flowery prose, but this was truly hypnotic and that’s what I recommend this listen for.

💚 PS. Yes. I truly enjoyed wallpaper descriptions. Not something I thought I ever would, but there again I was obsessed with Willy Wonka’s edible wallpaper so that is something I need to re-examine.

Big thanks to NetGalley and Hodder & Stoughton for providing me with an ALC in return for an honest review.


🎧 Narrator Beth Eyre was perfectly cast for this project, her understated yet powerful performance making this an addictive listen.


No spoilers. Maybe next time!
Click For Spoilers

The Company


London, 1870.

Lucy Braithwhite lives a privileged existence as heir to the fortune of Braithwhite & Company - the most successful purveyor of English luxury wallpapers the world over. The company's formulas have been respected for nearly a century, but have always remained cloaked in mystery. No one has been able to explain the originality of design, or the brilliance of their colours, leaving many to wonder if the mysterious spell-like effect of their wallpapers is due simply to artistry, or something more sinister.

When Mr Luckhurst, the company's manager, and the man who has acted as surrogate father to Lucy and her invalid brother John since they were children, suddenly dies, Lucy is shocked to discover that there is no succession plan in place. Who will ensure that the company and her family continue to thrive?

The answer soon arrives in the form of the young and alluring Julian Rivers, who, unbeknownst to Lucy and John, has been essential to the company's operations for some time. At first, he seems like the answer to their prayers, but as Lucy begins piecing together Julian's true intentions, and John begins seeing spectral visions in the house's wallpaper, it becomes clear to Lucy that she must do everything within her power to oppose the diabolic forces that have risen up to destroy her family.

Set against the backdrop of the real-life arsenic wallpaper controversy of the late 19th century, The Company is a dark and haunting slice of gothic Victoriana, following one woman's fight to preserve all that she holds dear.
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