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Eric

San Anselmo, CA, USA | Member Since 2000

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HELPFUL VOTES
24

  • The Life of Samuel Johnson

    • UNABRIDGED (34 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By James Boswell
    • Narrated By Jim Killavey
    Overall
    (17)
    Performance
    (4)
    Story
    (4)

    Samuel Johnson's place in history was assured by his Dictionary of the English Language, the first comprehensive English lexicography, but he was also the leading scholar and critic of his age. He is as celebrated for his brilliant conversations as for his writing, which first appeared in London magazines around 1737. In 1763, Johnson met James Boswell and by 1791 The Life of Samuel Johnson appeared.

    Eric says: "Great book, mechanical reading"
    "Great book, mechanical reading"
    Overall

    After listening to this monotonous, droning narrator, it occurred to me that he sounds just like Steven Hawking's voice emulator. Especially at the ends of senences. I actually checked the credits to see if they had used a voice emulator to make this recording. They did not, but they might as well have.

    On the plus side, the words are very distinct and clear, a must for a recording available only as a 1 or resampled 2. If you can stay awake and focused during the drone, you won't miss a word, but a work as dense and at times dry as this great book could have used a more "involved" rendition. This narrator seems to have absolutly no knowledge of nor concern for the meaning of what he reads - thus the voice-emulator style. (He also mispronounces English place names, but that's to be expected).

    Book: 4.5 stars
    Execution: 1

    21 of 23 people found this review helpful

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