Goodwood, Ontario Canada | Member Since 2013
Certainly. I have read the whole series many times but listening to it fills in or lets me fill in more inferences and observations.
Still Severian. Its fascinating how well you know him by the end of this book but even more interesting that there is so much more to discover about him that you really and genuinely care to learn.
Severian. You could say that he is not performed by Jonathan but he is instead performed by all the other characters. I guess Jonathan does so well with the supporting characters that they throw Severian into strong relief and you see him in a wonderful context. Perhaps that's why I enjoyed the audible book so much even though I have read the books over and over.
Yes indeed. Gene Wolfe tells you right at the beginning of the first book what's going to happen. And the story is asynchronous and loosely coupled but yet the reader (er listener) is compelled to walk with Severian (as he expresses it). The mystery, the allegories, the superficially hidden references that delight the audience and the deeper connections that the reader can triumphantly discover draw you to accompany Severian.
This book develops Severian, the wonderful combination of past, present and future in Severian's world and continues the beautiful prose and penetrating perspective gently hidden in a fascinating story.
Yes absolutely. And I have to many. O. Henry's short stories are filled with unpredictable twists, predictable twists that you so badly want to happen, truly elegant and enviable English and lovely ambushes of wit and humour. There is no impedance as you may find in other classics.
I think O. Henry is inimitable. I have read other superbly composed English. I have read cleverly constructed short stories (Harry Harrison comes to mind). And I have read laugh out loud comic juxtapositions (like Douglas Adams). But I've never enjoyed all three together the way O. Henry does it.
There are so many characters in a short story collection that this is tough. Lets just say that Bob Thomley, does the stories proud. He brings all the characters to life with excellent accents and tones.
All of the short stories have a twist. Or they don't have a twist you are expecting. That's the charm of them.
This is a thoroughly enjoyable expedition into recent history with a narrator who brings the characters to life and leads you thorough the elegant and superbly decorated language without hesitation and delivers you the fun and humour in the deadpan manner I'm sure O. Henry would have approved of.
The narrator (Jeff Woodman) was the star of this experience. That's the only reason I would recommend it to a friend. However, I could not recommend the book. I enjoy Gene Wolfe's work and his series "The Book of the New Sun" is a masterpiece. This book however is not up to the standards I expect from him.
Easy question. Gene Wolfe weaves a complex web of interconnected chess pieces when he writes a book. Casually dropped hints become crucial to understanding what those chess pieces are doing. In this book, it just becomes simultaneously too hard and of questionable reward to attempt to see the whole board. There are loose ends everywhere, unexplained coincidences, peculiar behaviours and even a determined listener like me will give up eventually and just skim lightly over the story. I'd like a "story so far" section every few chapters so that the puzzles that defeated me are clear and I can enjoy the next part of the story.
He caught the characters perfectly. The lead character is perfect and Jeff even uses intonation to try to give us a little more hint as to the connections being made. The different voices were instantly recognizable.
Yes. I think you have to listen in one sitting if you are to have any chance of understanding the mysterious depths of the plot and characters.
This book left me disappointed. Gene Wolfe always leaves you some clues to puzzle over after you have read one of his books and there is usually a reward. With this book, I was sadly not compelled enough by the mysteries, obvious logic gaps, peculiar behaviours, and twists that made no sense to attempt to unravel it more.
Perhaps I'm not quite as perceptive as other listeners but I was quite satisfied with the resolution of the mystery of the island. The glimpse into the behaviours found acceptable and the black and white (pun intended) view of the values of the age was fascinating at first but grew old as the novel progressed.
This was my first audible Jules Verne but I have read all of the others. This one seemed to me to be slower moving than the others.
I haven't heard him before but I would certainly choose him again as a narrator.
For sure. Bruce Willis would have to be the sailor and I'd love to see Morgan Freeman as the captain. Given the values of the era, this would mix things up nicely in a modern version of the tale !
An interesting book, well narrated with a satisfactory mystery but perhaps an ideal candidate for an abridged version.
Compelling, intriguing, beautiful
Severian. His view of the world in which he lives is coloured and shaped in a manner that draws you deeply into the story.
No bombast. And brilliant characterization. The speed is just right - sometimes the readers push too hard and you lose content or move too slowly and your concentration lapses.
I know the book. I've lost count of how many times I have read the whole series. But Jonathon Davis brought the book alive and I found more value in Gene Wolfe's remarkable masterpiece than I had known was there.
This is not a book to everyone's taste. But everyone should try reading it - or listening to it. Its one of the great science fiction masterpieces. One reviewer referred to Gene Wolfe's "achingly beautiful sentences" and Jonathon Davis savours them, holds them up to marvel at then moves to the next one.
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