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Jacob

Richmond, VA, United States | Member Since 2008

11
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 4 reviews
  • 7 ratings
  • 1 titles in library
  • 8 purchased in 2014
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  • Classic American Short Stories, Volume 1

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By William Faulkner, Thomas Wolfe, Edith Wharton, and others
    • Narrated By Charlton Griffin
    Overall
    (104)
    Performance
    (23)
    Story
    (24)

    Unlike the other arts, American literature has been a powerful, influential, and leading aspect of American culture. By turns sedate and mercurial and possessing a moral mind set of various social values, the American short story reveals in its pages the psyche of a growing, sprawling nation whose sense of destiny has always been larger than life. Here are seven masterpieces that will make you smile, make you frown, and leave you pondering the mystery that surrounds the soul of a great nation.

    James says: "Beautifully performed!"
    "brilliant reading"
    Overall

    I can't imagine a better reader--with the possible exception of Richard Brown, who narrated many of the O'Brian novels (Master and Commander, etc). The sound effects (trains, subways, old-time fiddle music) transform the reading--brilliant in itself; Griffin does an immense range of voice and accents--into something even greater. One reviewer complained that the stories are dark. Well, sure, most of them are dark. What else is new?

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • The Idiot

    • UNABRIDGED (22 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Fyodor Dostoevsky
    • Narrated By Robert Whitfield
    Overall
    (182)
    Performance
    (92)
    Story
    (95)

    In The Idiot, a saintly man, Prince Myshkin, is thrust into the heart of a society more concerned with wealth, power, and sexual conquest than the ideals of Christianity. Myshkin soon finds himself at the center of a violent love triangle in which a notorious woman and a beautiful young girl become rivals for his affections. Extortion, scandal, and murder follow, testing the wreckage left by human misery to find "man in man."

    Daniela says: "Dostoevsky does it again"
    "excellent reading"
    Overall

    This novel has a bewildering number of characters.
    Robert Whitfield manages to give each of them a different voice.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Homage to Catalonia

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By George Orwell
    • Narrated By Frederick Davidson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (124)
    Performance
    (73)
    Story
    (72)

    In 1936, George Orwell went to Spain to report on the civil war and instead joined the P.O.U.M. militia to fight against the Fascists. In this now justly famous account of his experience, he describes both the bleak and the comic aspects of trench warfare on the Aragon front, the Barcelona uprising in May 1937, his nearly fatal wounding just two weeks later, and his escape from Barcelona into France after the P.O.U.M. was suppressed.

    Roger says: "Engaging insight into Orwell's political education"
    "spot-on reading"
    Overall

    Frederick Davidson's voice is perfect for this book. I think the accent is something close to Oxford English, but as an American could easily understand everything he said.

    And Orwell's memoir, of course, is brilliant.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Golden Bowl

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Henry James
    • Narrated By Flo Gibson
    Overall
    (23)
    Performance
    (7)
    Story
    (5)

    Wealthy American widower Adam Verver and his daughter Maggie live in Europe, where they collect art and relish each other's company. Through the efforts of the manipulative Fanny Assingham, Maggie becomes engaged to Amerigo, an Italian prince in reduced circumstances, but remains blind to his rekindled affair with her longtime friend Charlotte Stant. Maggie and Amerigo marry, and later, after Charlotte and Adam have also wed, both spouses learn of the ongoing affair, though neither seeks a confrontation.

    Jacob says: "inaudible"
    "inaudible"
    Overall

    As the first priority of a physician is to do no harm, so the priority of an audiobook is that the listener must be able to understand every word. With this audiobook, the recording itself appears to have been done poorly. But also, Flo Gibson emphasizes accent and a kind of singsong mannerism over clarity. I have read The Golden Bowl twice (the printed version) and I kept the text nearby while I tried to listen to the audiobook. Flo Gibson pronounced "Florence" as "Florin," "flight" as "flot," "seemed to us" as "seemed to all," "great" as "grift," "the Prince" as "the trip," "migrate" as "my room," and her pronunciation of "galantuomo" was utterly incomprehensible. When a reader pronounces a foreign word, she must pause to indicate that a foreign word is coming and use the proper accent so that the listener knows, in this case, that she's speaking Italian. I returned this book and am listening to Wings of the Dove instead, read by Nadia May, whom I find much easier to understand.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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