One becomes part of this scene and family through the skills of the author and narrator. I feel as though I was there through every chapter, event and age.
Well written, entertaining book involving much Chinese social and economic culture. Worth reading! Very enjoyable and I looked forward to listening to the book at every opportunity.
I don't think the audio edition can be considered better, as much as it can be considered to "enrich" the experience of the book as a whole. Buck wrote with such clarity of subject and description - it is not hard to visualize from her printed words. Heald's narration only takes that clarity and puts it in your ears.
The moment when the farmer realizes his error in having taken two pearls from his wife, to give to his mistress.
He didn't overly embelish tone or voices - very nice smooth presentation of a classic.
The main character, the farmer - the story is about him and his love of the land.
This is at least the third time I've read or listened to this story. I love it more each time. So much to learn about cultural suppression of women, resiliency, human nature and our ties to the earth.
Timeless story delivered with superb narration. For those who have read Buck, this is a great audible version. For those new to Buck, this is a fine introduction.
The narrator is perfect as his voice is soothing and mature but also very dynamic. The many characters come to life through him. The book itself is far better than I thought it would be but I imagine that its beauty and insights would appeal most to readers who themselves have already attained a certain age. It is the story of a man's life and so one must have seen something of life and perhaps already have wed and had children, to fully enjoy this marvelous tale. The descriptions of the land are unforgettable and never once overwrought or tedious as I worried they might be. The writing flows through the places and characters as they develop and as the land transforms from their labor. It is also a book about poverty and wealth, work and ritual, family and love and lust and hatred. war, starvation, shame, bandits, revolution, the country, the city, the disabled, drug addiction, beauty, greed, risk, friendship and loyalty, fear and loathing, honor, guilt, memory, money, loyalty, disloyalty, famine, disease, mobs, theft, rumor, innuendo, scheming, posturing, embarrassment, pride, babies, whores, gender issues.... It's all there but never as overwhelming as a long list might suggest. It is a giant book that taxes the reader very little and will probably remain a classic for a long time.
I value intelligent stories with characters I can relate to. I can appreciate good prose, but a captivating plot is way more important.
I don't usually go for high literature or drama, but I am trying to expand my horizons. This book has some beautiful prose, and a moving story with characters that you can care about.