Audiobook Review: Penelope by Anya Wylde

Posted June 21, 2020 by Sophia Rose in Reviews / 18 Comments

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I received this book for free from Author in exchange for an honest review.
This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Audiobook Review: Penelope by Anya Wylde
Narrated by Deryn Oliver

One StarOne StarOne StarOne Star

Series: The Fairweather Sisters #1
Genres: Comedy Romance, Historical Romance, Romantic Comedy
Published by Indie/Self Published
Released on May 8, 2020
Format: Audiobook
Source: Author
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The Delight

Penelope stood the test of time for me when I picked it up as a re-read in the audio version and found it as zany and madcap as ever.  It was “excessively diverting” to quote Austen who would have found this one absurd, but oodles of entertaining fun all the same.  It was a listening delight and, fair warning, if you are embarrassed by your laugh then banish yourself to listen at home.


Penelope begins when Miss Penelope Fairweather is brought to town for a London Season chaperoned by none other than a dowager duchess who owed an old friend so is bringing out her daughter.  Penelope is not a bit like the shy, retiring country miss the ducal family was expecting.  The Duke is something of a martinet and has the household running on a strict set of rules that Penelope’s arrival quite turns on its head.  Without an effort, she gets into the worst, most embarrassing scrapes embarrassing the duke who already loathes her for being such a bumbling disruption.  Even her pet goat, yes, you read that right, contributes to the mayhem.
But along the way, her good nature and heart win her the duke’s crotchety grandfather, his mother, his sister and perhaps if she can avoid disaster long enough, find romance with the most surprising person.

Penelope is a story that is sheer entertainment and something you definitely have to be in the mood for.  It is not meant to be taken seriously on any level.  Think of the great slapstick comedies that have a general storyline and then zing all over the place running foul of historical backdrop, manners, straight characters, and witty repertoire.
Though, it doesn’t go off the rails with the plot which is there and strong through it all.  Penelope is a sweet-hearted, country girl who is there to gain some London polish and take her chances finding a husband during the London social season while a staid, pompous, rule-following duke learns to loosen up and see his life plan change as he observes Penelope tripping her way into some poise, refinement, and fashion.

Deryn Oliver was a new to me narrator, but her narration work was easy to listen to and slip into the story.  I would often click on the story, planning to only listen to a little, and getting caught up in it and ignoring my plans.  She caught the tone of the tale and the personalities of the characters.  The characters were already a trip, but she worked with their comedic caricature so they were not too bombastic and were just right for this sort of story.   Once in a while, I’d have to listen to a section over again, but that was the wordiness of the book and not the narration.

In summary, this Regency-era romp tickled my funny bone and I can heartily recommend it to those who enjoy a dab of sweet romance and a huge dollop of madcap comedy.

My thanks to the author for the opportunity to listen to this book in exchange for an honest review.

Challenges Met

New Release #61
Audio #42
Historical Fiction #53
Romanceopoly #44 Free choice

5 1 vote
Article Rating
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I was born and raised near Sacramento, CA. I have read since I was four years old and developed tastes that run the gamut of literature. I went away to college and have a degree in education, a certificate in family history research, and a certificate in social work. I worked for a non-profit agency with low income families for 20 years which included being responsible for the children’s library and promoting/teaching adult literacy. I have lived in Southeast Michigan for the last 18 years and I am currently a book addicted homemaker with a cat and husband who keep me grounded. Recently, I made it a challenge to review each book that I have read as a favor to author friends who said reviews are important. I have done reviews for Good Reads, Amazon, eBay, and Smashwords, but mostly at Goodreads and Amazon.

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Mary Kirkland
12 days ago

I’m glad to hear you liked it. I love the dress on the cover but couldn’t imagine having to wear one.

Sophia Rose
12 days ago
Reply to  Mary Kirkland

It was a hoot. Corsets and long gowns for me, no way, but like you I enjoy seeing the pictures. 🙂

12 days ago

Sounds like a good time! Also, love covers with big dresses 😉

Sophia Rose
11 days ago
Reply to  vvb

These are zany comedy. I love pouring through art and photography from the past and seeing the old dress styles including the big dresses.

Carole Rae
11 days ago

Fun! I just finished a comedy. I need another one I think! Good find!

Sophia Rose
11 days ago
Reply to  Carole Rae

This writer’s books would definitely be considered fun comedies. 🙂

Kimberly @ Caffeinated Reviewer

This sounds fun and we all need to laugh out loud more.

Sophia Rose
11 days ago

For sure!

Lover of Romance
11 days ago

Sometimes you just need a light and warm romance that fills you with such light. Glad to see you enjoyed this one so much here.

Lovely review!!

Sophia Rose
11 days ago

You said it. I’ve been picking more of these up lately. 🙂

10 days ago

Oh, this sounds so awesome – a comedy historical romance?! I’ve not read the book but it does sound fun!

Sophia Rose
10 days ago
Reply to  Jen

You don’t see many like this. It was a hoot, Jen!

9 days ago

This sounds like such fun!!! Sometimes you just need a book that doesn’t take itself seriously at all.


Sophia Rose
9 days ago

Exactly! 🙂

Angie Elle
8 days ago

Ooh, this sounds like such a fun story! I am glad it was so entertaining for you. I love a hard edged man and a woman who makes him see things differently kind of plotline!

Sophia Rose
8 days ago
Reply to  Angie Elle

It was a load of laughs, for sure. Ha, I like them paired up like that, too, Angie!

Lindy Gomez
3 days ago

I love a story that makes me laugh uncontrollably! This sounds so fun and light-hearted, like the perfect pick-me-up! Great Review Sophia 🙂

Sophia Rose
2 days ago
Reply to  Lindy Gomez

My heart was definitely lighter after listening to Penelope. 🙂