This is one of the best narrated audiobooks I have heard in years. The atmosphere of the novel and its setting were perfectly enhanced by Timothy Dalton's rich deep voice which almost hypnotised me, it kept me so focused on the story.
Although the story is a mystery there is a feeling of foreboding throughout that makes events much less shocking and more inevitable than might be usual for this genre. THe writing is beautiful and much better than one is likely to expect from a conventional mystery story.
THe story is also deep and complex and composed of many interwoven strands--it's really quite a stunning performance when you take apart the simple and direct pieces of which it is made and see the complexity of the outcome.
Very much enjoyed, very highly recommended. Will look forward to hearing the SILVER SWAN with great anticipation and pleasure.
I love Margaret Atwood's later books, but this one seemed unsatisfying, not quite feminist yet not quite traditional, somewhere trembling in between a declaration of independence and complete confusion. I like the narrator - she didn't do a bad job, she was understandable but the performance did nothing to enhance my understanding of the book either. I felt the narration of the main character was a fairly aggressive reading, contrasted with other voices for less important characters that clashed with ideas I had of each of those characters as well. The only way I would recommend this audio would be for a passionate Margaret Atwood fan who most absolutely read everything available.
I love Jhumpa Lahiri's short fiction and think her collections, UNACCUSTOMED EARTH and INTERPRETER OF MALADIES are among the most enjoyable books I've read in recent years. I really looked forward to the publication of this book but was disappointed. I don't think she is as masterful in the novel as she is in the short story. I felt much of this book struggled to extend itself into a novel when it would have been better as a novella. I didn't find the characterization believable or convincing, and I felt the story dragged on long after I felt it should have been over.
Still, I read most of the book with gusto and eagerly went back to the story each time I had a chance - but having purchased the kindle version I was just as happy to read the book in kindle form as to listen - I didn't look forward to the narration as much as I usually do. It certainly didn't add to the book, and may even have detracted from it. The narrator reads clearly, but doesn't really bring anything engaging to the audio.
I recently read a review of this book which criticized it as deriving from 'The Great Men' theory of history as opposed to a more social historical analysis of the longer term trends that drove the results of this election. Baloney!
This is a reporter's book of what happened behind the scenes of the presidential campaign that many political junkies and others who follow politics closely love knowing about. It is NOT an historical analysis of the election results and in no way attempts to be one.
I enjoyed it tremendously and the narrator was great.
I also read GAME CHANGE and loved that - perhaps even more because there was more suspense to that election.
This is highly recommended for those looking to understand what went into some of the decisions made by the campaigns rather than a social explanation of the outcome. The only reason I rated it four stars instead of five is that I enjoyed GAME CHANGE even more.
I am not a big fan of ghost stories but I do like wonderful narration. This was a book that I probably would not have finished in bound form, but found quite entertaining (if a bit overwrought) in audio form.
The two narrators, Jill Tanner for the older Vida Winter, and Biaca Amato for the younger Margaret were WONDERFUL and I would listen to either one of them again in a heartbeat.
The story itself was initially engaging but felt 'overengineered' by the middle of the book. I was kept going by the power of the audio version which was so well done. I can't emphasize enough how much skilled narrators can do to support a mediocre book. There wasn't much substance to the tale by the end, other than the importance of siblings but I very much enjoyed the reading.
I am a HUGE Laurie Colwin fan, and I feel awful complaining since I am astoundingly happy to finally have Laurie Colwin's books on audio. However, the reader of HOME COOKING is much better suited to Laurie Colwin's writing than this particular narrator.
This narrator is not BAD, he's just not right for Laurie Colwin. He would be a great narrator for the newsreel, NEWS OF THE WORLD. He is clear and can be understood. His voice is just not the right voice for a light, witty novel about love and manners.
For those who have come to love Laurie Colwin's stories, essays and novels there can be no greater treat than having audio recordings available. I thank Audible for having started to make these recordings available. However, I do think it's important to choose appropriate readers for the texts. This is also part of the art of making wonderful audiobooks.
This particular audio is preferable to no audio recordings of Laurie Colwin's work. But a better pairing of reader with text is definitely possible.
Although I always yearn to listen to Russian novels due to fond memories of reading them many years ago, I have been discouraged from trying an audio version because the length means I will be reading the same book for a whole month now that I have so little free time to read compared to when I was a student.
I bought this Davina Porter audio YEARS ago and could never face so much time with one book. For some reason I recently decided I was 'in the mood'. I listened to a sample, dreading the thought of buying yet ANOTHER version (I mistakenly bought two different versions in 2004) to get good sound. What a nice surprise! The recording is as good as anything being recorded today, and despite being a really picky listener I have no complaints at all.
On the contrary, 'Anna Karenina' contains long disquisitions on political and agrarian economy which are very demanding of a wonderful narrator and are well served by Davina Porter. Her expression is always lively, her emotion appropriate and her pronunciation is perfect. She uses different intonations for different characters for variety, but not different voices - her rhythm is wonderful, and her accents in French for example, are very comprehensible. There are so many Russian and French and German names that this book could be a disaster for an unskilled reader, but everything she says is comprehensible and beautifully pronounced - even when it isn't actually the way a native would speak. You never lose the meaning of the text which is incredibly important in such a long book with so many foreign words.
For readers/listeners with the time to devote to a classic Russian tome, this is a wonderful recording.
I am listening for the second time to this book because I enjoyed listening to the new "Heartburn" audio so much, I decided to have a Nora Ephron festival. The first time I heard this audiobook I had to pull over to the side of the road to avoid an accident because I was laughing so hard. I love hearing Nora Ephron read her own work and I am really enjoying this book the second time around. I find her thoughts witty, biting and well worth my time. I find myself writing once again "i usually prefer professional narrators but....". I think hearing Nora Ephron narrate her own essays has made me finally conclude that hearing the immediacy of some authors read their own work is worth the somewhat less professional reading quality - the ability to connect directly to the wisdom and humor that inspired the text is quite special. Now that she is gone, the recording of her work in her own voice is even more intense an experience for me. Highly recommended.
Combine Meryl Streep's talents with Nora Ephron's wit -->a recipe for delight.
Having read the book AGES ago and seen the movie, I was not prepared for how VERY much I would enjoy this audio. I was afraid that maybe it would be 'dated'. I was so wrong.
The story remais as witty, wry and wistful as it was thirty years ago. In fact I am more impressed now with its poise than I was the first time time I read it. I agree with the review of another reader: by the act of writing this book Nora Ephron transformed herself from victim to heroine of her own life.
Meryl Streep's reading adds so much to this audio. She always inhabits a role, but there was so much love and affection in her portrayal of Rachel Samstat. I feel her performance as a tribute to a life well-lived - the life of Nora Ephron. She was the very best choice of narrator for this story.
This audiobook was perfect, I can't think how it could have been better or I could have enjoyed it more.
This is a terrific book, relatively short and very well read. One of its pleasures is the view of 1970s England, which is very distinctly different from the modern financial capital that London has since become. I enjoyed revisiting that time as well as that place, despite being sadly reminded of what life was like for women in that time.
The story is very well read by Juliet Stevenson, one of my favorite narrators, and is another fascinating view of womanhood from the perspective of a male author who seems very much a character in this novel.
One of my favorite books is ATONEMENT by Ian McEwan, also a story about a strong female writer and this book shares many of the things I loved about that book as well. The story weaves in upon itself in a most satisfying way like ATONEMENT did. It also has many levels but despite this complexity is never hard to follow. It doesn't scream 'LITERATURE' but it is literary in a substantive way, reflecting on the nature of writing and truth and questioning the reliability of the narrator but without losing the power of the narrative.
I really enjoyed it and highly recommend it both as a listening experience and a thoughtful story.
If you have any taste for light British comedy, this is the perfect listen. Mapp and Lucia are two creations that can best be appreciated by Downton Abbey and Masterpiece Theater lovers, but most anglophiles with a sense of humor will love them. Prunella Scales is the perfect narrator, having played Miss Mapp on the British TV series of the same name many years ago. She is a wonderful narrator who brings much subtle humor to her reading. I found myself laughing out loud in public.
The story takes place in 1930s Britain in a small town called Tilling where Lucia, an energetic woman of great energy (and even greater pretensions) and wealth has come to spend the summer in an effort to have a change of scene to help her move on after the death of her husband. Her great friend George Pilsen also rents a cottage and the two of them become competitors for the social leadership of Tilling with MIss Mapp, whose house Lucia rents.
Although there is nothing particularly deep about the book, it is an endlessly amusing view of the foibles of the upper middle class in another time and place. It is perfect for summer listening when it's too hot to think to hard, and a little humor and wit is just the perfect touch.
Report Inappropriate Content
If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.