Corona, CA, United States
First place, if we're just talking about audioPLAYS (like Zorro and the recent Gaiman). It's the most sophisticated audioplay style drama I have heard. The length (7 hours!!) itself puts it in a whole other category from basic radio drama, the sound effects and the rock solid performances make it a new kinda audio high for me. I love the fact that the author wrote this himself. It's different from the book cause the book is very internal, while this is very EXTERNAL. And yet, it retains the intimacy of the story; it's like you're a fly on the wall, eavesdropping on the whole story.
They were all very solid. Of the adults, Col. Graff was the best (he was the original Ender on the audiobooks I think). Ender (Kirby?) showed astonishing range; made me cry. Valentine was very moving, too. The villains were delightfully evil: Peter and Bonzo. My kids loved the villains. I loved the new British lady character. No one has mentioned the sound effects, which are AMAZING. OMG. When that door to the Battle Room opens, and you can actually FEEL the space. (Grammy winnerJanis Ian's Valentine theme is haunting, and all the music is very moving (not that synthesized stuff.) I looked up John Rubinstein (I'm a music teacher) who did the score; he's the son of freakin' ARTHUR Rubinstein!! BTW, I downloaded this at top quality, and on headphones, the sound is stunning. We have a family date night tonight to start listening to it together as a family, episode by episode. Popcorn and Ender!
Yes, yes, yes, as others have said, there are adults and women playing kids. But I suspect Card's writing is too sophisticated to find a dozen little kids to play them. Unlike other reviewers, I had no problem with women/adult voices. I thought they sounded wonderful. Like a musical ensemble; sort of Greek chorus mode. I thought the accents were well done, especially Alai and the head honcho East Indian Admiral. Can you imagine a bunch of real 12 year olds bungling Card's amazing dialogue? Please. And it's not like Bart Simpson acting, because that's a super hyped cartoon fake voice. This is drama. Plus, how do we know what kids will sound like in the future? I felt this was story-telling at it's best. It was awesome. YMMV.
And now, for something completely different.
Don't expect this to be the book. Don't expect it to be the original audiobook (I loved and still love the original audiobooks, too). Purists may have problems with this version. I foresee that there will be mega review "trolls" who hate it. I say, throw out all the 5 stars (like mine) and throw out all the one stars, and consider this audioplay as a nice solid 4 star. And don't compare it to anything else you've ever heard. It's a different animal. And a very sleek and sexy one. When's the next one??? ;0)
Yes; with friends. And on my stereo system instead of headphones.
Maybe Dracula? But not really. This is more like theatre or film.
We get a lot of new background material about what the adults are scheming.
I'm not good at brevity, sorry.
Leave me alone, so I can listen to the rest!
Best Version Yet!
None. I've never heard anything like it.
Yes, but not this intricate. I liked Zorro a few years back with Val Kilmer, but it was a much shorter program. This is an event.
Absolutely. Thinking of doing an Ender's Game Alive full day PARTY!
Keep doing these.
See my previous review of Chapter One.
Graff and Ender. Oh, and Valentine. And mazer. And let's see .... just about everyone!
So far? DAP yelling at the launchies.
Excellent drama and fun effects. My kids are in a trance. They skipped TV tonight.
The ease and speed of download. The audioplay itself sounds spectacular. Top audio quality and sound effects.
World War Z, MAYBE. But Z wasn't as complex as this production.
Well, if you want the book, listen to Rudnicki's original recording. This is an expansion of the book and is great for families and kids (although it's by no means all kiddie stuff)
When Ender gets taken away to Battle school and the Mom and Valentine cry. KLEENEX!
Make more like these.
For me, yes. The book is long and there are many characters and a lot of foreign phrases (German and Hebrew) so it was very helpful to be "read to" on this occasion. Also, the characters came to life for me very vividly by the reader. Also, there were some very confusing transitions between past and present and flashback, and have the reader guide me there was illuminating.
They are all spoilers so I hesitate to say. I can say though, that it's not a cheery little story; it's deep and intricate and very, very tragic at several points.
She did a good job of reading it. She goes from a first-person dying 89 year old woman recounting her youth: to a 14 year old girl just by adjusting tone and attitude. She handles aging Jewish men, dwarves and deaf circus performers. (The man narrator only read little bits of the chapter breaks and the introduction.) She doesn't do 7,000 different voices, but she tells the story with author intent, which is my preferred kind of narrator.(I am sometimes very puzzled by the divergent opinions about readers; and sometimes shocked by the piercing comments. I guess it's a matter of taste and a very personal choice. 'Nuf said.)
Again, spoiler. There were many, many such moments in the novel. How could there not be
The book is long and I felt Zimler could have pared things down a bit It gave me amazing insights into not only the specific horrors of WWII, but an amazing portrayal of Berlin, the city. I knocked off points because of the excessive length and because of a somewhat anticlimactic end to the solving of the "mystery" part of the story. But then, I like my "mysteries" tied up neatly.
The author writes very well; her characters are real, and suspenseful. Her Christian message, though clear, is not heavy handed like many others in the genre. I like a good mystery, and though the story started a bit slow, the narrator kept me interested until it picked up. From then on, I couldn't stop listening. Good job.
If I told you, it would be a spoiler! ;0) It's toward the end. That is all I will say!
Yes. I think I have listened to her on Coming Home by Karen Kingsbury, and enjoyed her and the male narrator very much. I loved the way she did the sisters in this one, especially Holly, who is a hoot. And not many readers can do little kids well. I also liked her reading of Shadow in Serenity by Terri Blackstock. She does emotional things that are very moving. Made the story very scary and exciting to me.
Oh, that's a good question. Maybe "White Lies."
No. Just God Bless!
Well, better, I don't know. But different, yes. I guess maybe better, because the narration was very good. I actually preferred this narrator to the celebrity Diane Keaton's reading of SLOUCHING TOWARDS BETHLEHEM.
I loved the exposé about the corruption in the prison system. I had no idea. Now, I do.
It was first person and very well done. So she did all the characters very well. At first, I thought she was slow, but within ten minutes she was spinning an amazing character. I felt like she honored the author's intentions very well. I will look for other books by this reader.
No, it was better chapter by chapter since the subject/topics changed.
Fabulous book for Californians who want to learn more about their history. Didion is a fabulous writer, and I loved the narrator's take on her tone and irony. Well done.
I was traveling to Russia and thought I'd take this along since much takes place in St. Petersburg. This is not an easy book nor everyone's cup of tea. That said, it is a stunning account by the author of his early years prior to 1940; he examines the question of "who am I?" through stories, fragments of memories and a robust portrait of his father. The writing is addictive, despite, or maybe because of the author's attitude being quite humorless, definitely arrogant and sometimes didactic. I watched a youtube video interview of Nabokov, and the real man was quite bristly and he had an odd, odd accent (despite his Cambridge education.) The narrator (Rudnicki) does a clever job of capturing the real man, without alienating us. I don't think I would have read this book on paper; listening to it was made easy by this production. The narrator handles the long, winding passages with ease. It was a delicious listen.
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