Though the style and themes of Austen's "Emma" are locked into the period when the book was written, there is enough of the universal human character in this tale to still make it an entertaining listen. This particular narration was wonderfully done, so that the narrator's talent carries you over the parts of the book that ramble on too long. Though this wasn't my favorite Austen book, it has lots of her ironic touches and masterfully drawn characterizations. Most importantly, it has that most magic of qualities, the ability to make me tolerant of other commuters.
Perfect tone and pace. Brilliant interpretation of comedic passages. I'll never listen to a Jane Austen book that ISN'T read by Juliet Stevenson. She's the icing on the cake!
The narrator was fantastic! She really made the story come to life - you felt as though the characters were real people, really there with you. The story was also wonderful - I found it easier to understand and follow than some of Jane Austen's other works.
Any other of Jane Austen's books - obviously, because they're written by the same author and of the same era.
Spoiler alert! When Emma and Mr. Knightly express their true feelings for one another, and the scene's following. From there onward, they show such sweet, humerous, and companionable fondness for each other. You can see that they are indeed dear friends who happened to fall in love.
I didn't have an extreme reaction to this book; though, I still found it very witty and a compelling listen.
Great listen for Jane Austen fans!
With my eyes failing I increasingly turn to audio books, but they are a frustration for this reason: there is no table of contents that one can use to access book chapters. Instead the whole screen on my iPhone is filled with some sort of useless image that tells me nothing about where and what is in the book. Yes, above this worthless image, in print too small for my eyes to read, there is some sort of virtually useless numbering but it is of no help. I have stopped buying Audiobooks for this reason.
The wonderful Juliet Stevenson can't be bettered as a narrator of Jane Austen. There is, of course, a lot of competition, but where Stevenson has recorded a book, she is always first choice.
The characterization is distinctive but not caricatured, the irony pointed but not laboured, and no nuance of the prose is overlooked.
As Emma is, in my opinion, the most delightful of Austen's novels, I can't recommend this audiobook too highly.
I don't think I am the one for these type of books. Pride & Prejudice was a bore to me as well. Neither could hold my attention.
Mystery reader (especially series) and Austen lover
It is difficult to come up with anything new to say about a book that has been a classic for almost 200 years, other than "I LOVE IT." This has been one of my favorite Jane Austen books, as well as one of my favorite books overall, since I first read it more than 40 years ago. It has all the usual wonderful Austen touches -- beautifully drawn characters, dry humor, sparkling dialogue -- plus a bit of intrigue and what is to me a touch of sweetness about the story of love lost and refound.
Add to such a wonderful book the performance of Juliet Stevenson, and you can't ask for anything more. Her voice and inflection are wonderful and just perfect for the story and characters she is portraying. Other reviewers on Audible have said that she has the absolutely perfect voice for narrating Jane Austen books. I agree completely. Now I have to get all the remaining Austen books with Stevenson's narration!
Beneath the tranquil story of a young lady and her maturation into womanhood, lies an insightful social critique of the time. With its patriarchal social mores, the women in this novel hover over the bigger issues of gender inequities, seemingly unawares that they exist. Jane Austen keeps her steady gaze on proceedings.
What can be said about Juliet Stevenson's reading? It's perfectly nuanced and voiced, with all of the characters given the best performance possible.
Highly recommended to any one, whether you are an Austen fan or a newbie looking for the perfect novel describing life in England in the early 1800's.
The narrator was able to impersonate all the characters, both male and female, in a way that allows the reader to differentiate among them.
When Emma insulted Miss Bates during the picnic outing
Not really. The whole book came to life with the reading.
Will listen to more of this narrator.
The narration is simply wonderful. Juliet Stevenson made this story come alive. At times I was laughing with tears running down my face. I have hundreds of audible books now but this is up there with the best.