Narrator Robert Whitfield gives individuality to every personality in this character-driven novel. The Idiot careens from drawing room comedy to pathos to political satire sometimes in a wink. Whitfield is up to all the challenges and renders all the tension and nuance found on the page. The only lapse is the light fluttery voice of Natasha Filipovna which does not match the seductive beauty's willful character.
One star is withheld because of the translation which at key moments opts for a word that, although correct, misses the sarcastic or hyperbolic intent.
This book will entertain you while you listen and haunt you with its personalities long after.
Dialogue is the engine of all of Dostoevski's novels. The author is skillful at differentiating the voices of his many characters. The narrator of this production makes almost no attempt to do the same. As a result, the conflict of 'isms that gives the novels its drama is lost. And when the listener doesn't know who's saying what, she won't know who's doing what.
This recording is a major disappointment, especially when compared to Robert Whitfield's masterful performance of The Idiot also by Dostoevski.
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