This audiobook is a collection of Swift's essays, letters, and other works. The best known of these is "A Modest Proposal" wherein the author puts forward a rather original scheme to solve the problem of the poor children of Ireland. As this is a renowned piece of literature most of you probably know what he had in mind, if you do not, the fork on the cover can be taken as a hint.
I am not sure if one was supposed to enjoy this bitter satire but I did. However, if I were to pick my personal favourite, I would go for "Directions To Servants" which was not bitter at all and made me burst out laughing every now and again.
There were some minor pieces I could not get into the spirit of, particularly the letters, many of which felt "out of context". You cannot help admiring the language though.
On the whole I can recommend this audiobook. Not everything in it is brilliant but there are some real gems to be found.
This is a story of a man whose unrealized love drives him to a lifelong hatred of those around him. It is narrated by Mr Lockwood who came to live at a farmhouse called Wuthering Heights and himself is just an observer (or rather a listener). He gets an account of past happenings at the place from a gossip house servant Nelly who though no central figure gets some limelight herself. Nelly having her sources as well - narration goes sometimes as deep as 4 people, but the plot is very easy to follow. Reading is quite slow but otherwise perfect. It makes up for the sound quality which can be described as average at best.
Prologue and epilogue were the most interesting parts of this audiobook for me. The former gave me an insight into an autistic child's parent's life, the latter provided some wise conclusions which made for a graceful ending. I regret to say that much as you can extract some of these from the in-between as well, unless you are crazy about shamanism and horses, you run the risk of falling asleep a couple of times while listening.
The audio production is good. Rupert Isaacson is yet another author who does well at reading his book. While doing the latter he seems to relive the adventure which adds to human aspect. His renditions of Rowan's tantrums sound very faithful and sometimes a little bit funny.
The story is moving and reveals Khaled Hosseini to be a deft writer. And you get to learn a lot about Afghanistan, its society, customs etc. which is good. During the first hour or two one may be under impression that this is autobiographical to a point. As the story progresses however it gets less and less probable.
The writing tends to be overcreative in this novel at times. There's a place in California where they would love this story (so I kept thinking throughout the listen, and googling the title afterwards showed my hunch was correct). Having this in mind "The Kite Runner" is still worth a listen.
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