I'm a high school senior and we're about to read Heart of Darkness in a few weeks, so I figured I'd download this to help me out a bit. It's been an interesting listen. I thought it was pretty humorous that Kenneth Branagh is narrating, as we recently saw him perform in Hamlet after reading the play a few months ago (he was excellent) and he's also the narrator for the documentaries we're watching in History class. What a coincidence! His voice is lovely, enticing almost, so I'm glad that he narrated this. Now, I'll be just about fully acquainted with Kenneth Branagh's voice.
A Traveling Listener
I'd read Heart of Darkness prior to listening to Kenneth Branagh read - what a wonderful experience - listening to him! His concise enunciation and style are perfect to the book.
I hadn't revisited "Heart of Darkness" for decades until I listened to this audiobook. My impressions are simple and intense.
Regardless of the post-colonial critique of Conrad - he was, I believe, remarkably understanding of the wrongs of colonialism for a man of his time - the writing and the psychological depth of the novella are nearly unsurpassed in 19th- and 20th-century English language literature.
In addition, Kenneth Branagh demonstrates here the difference between merely passable or even good dramatic reading, and true craftsmanship. I can't imagine how the publisher lured such an amazing acting talent into doing the narration of a book in the public domain, but Branagh's rendition is the finest of any audiobook I've ever listened to.
I'm deeply impressed with both Conrad and Branagh.
Thank you, Audible.
Very, very good. It's better read aloud than read in a book, I think, at least by Kenneth Branaugh. It aided my understanding and retention.
Avid reader and high school English teacher. Kindle, book, audio - if they could implant books directly into my brain, I'd probably sign up.
Unfortunately, I was unable to fully enjoy Kenneth Branagh's performance because of the changes to Conrad's text. It is beautifully read, but I can't use it for class.
As a high school English teacher, using audiobooks sometimes makes my life easier. I use them to "reread" for class and sometimes in class to help students' comprehension. This version changes certain words and phrases to a more politically correct alternative. When one is trying to teach historical context and purpose along with the story, this is disappointing. While those unfamiliar with the text may not notice the substitutions, I found it quite glaring. As an introduction to the novel for students, I'll go back to the other audio version that I have and use that.
The narrator is excellent, of course, and that's why I purchased it. The story is good. Gets slow sometimes but very interesting and well written if a little subtle.
I've been buying books from Audible for about 7 years now, and this performance is arguably the best. I put it along side Jeremy Irons reading of Lolita, as one of the seminal performances of an artist, for this medium.
Yes. The narration is maybe the best I have ever heard, and I have nearly 1000 audiobooks in my collection. He brought the darkness and despair out and gave it life through his reading. This was an Oscar worthy performance of an audiobook.
Branaugh had a wonderful work to begin with but his ability to bring it to life was a pure rare delight. I hung on his narration and felt the lonely dark despair of the characters
Life, fear, disenchantment and expectation of his next word. It gave the book vivid emotion.
No spoilers so ...Marlowe's emotional voyage at the near end.
This is one of the truest examples of the wonders an audiobook can be when a great book meets an unsurpassed narrator.
I don't as I didn't get far.
Narrator not bad, story just ruined it.
20 minutes doesn't allow a valid review.