This book was beautifully written, and Bowen did a wonderful job of showing what life was like in pre-war England, at least of the upper classes. The dialog is excellent and the characters are wonderfully developed. The problem I had with the book was the story, which was very underwhelming. The drama was so....non-dramatic that I kept telling myself that there has to be more to come.
The performance by Kellgren is outstanding, with wonderful characters and very well read. While I wouldn't read this book again, I would definitely read more by Kellgren.
Before I got to part 3 of this book, I was thoroughly enjoying it. The writing is excellent, the characters lively, the story seemed to be going somewhere and the performance by Connelly was superb. Bowles did a wonderful job of giving the reader an idea of what traveling around Africa at that time was like, and being transported to another world is one of the things I love about reading books.
Then I read part 3 and the entire time I was trying to figure out if I was reading the same book with the same character. What Bowles has Kit go through is out of left field, I just didn't understand and it didn't fit the rest of the story at all.
I enjoyed reading this book, but I'm not sure if I would read it again and it isn't placed among my favorites. It is very well written and paints a picture of Africa that puts the reader there, but it's not necessarily a gripping tale.
What I liked best about the book were the details of life that the characters went through, they give the story more life and texture.
None of the individual scenes stood out that much to me, the dramatic events seemed to happen abruptly and without fanfare.
I feel that some things in the book were a bit of a let down. For instance, Salim's romance with Yvette was promising but then abruptly ended with violence that was unjustified and unexplained to the reader. Salim was done with her, but why did he beat her? It doesn't make sense.
Simon Vance was, once again, outstanding. I would never think twice about listening to one of his narrations.
I was amazed by the consistancy of Mr. Hurt's narration. Despite the incredible length of this book, and despite the fact that characters tend to repeat themselves in lengthy dialogue, Mr. Hurt consistant narration made it easy for me to stay involved with this book. In all aspects, I would like to say well done to him.
The book itself was very well written, and I now understand what all the fuss is about. It was amazing how relevent the book is to today's society. Miss Rand's research was fantastic, I was constantly amazed by the depth of the details in the story. My only comment which could be considered mildly negative is that, as mentioned previously, the characters tend to waffle on a bit and repeat themselves during some very lengthy dialog. But I hesitate to take away from Miss Rand's efforts, this is a very good book.
I highly recommend this book, and highly recommend this particular narration of it.
I found this book to be very well written, and very well presented. Professor Dawkins explains all of his points very well, and I thought his narration was superb. It is nice to listen to a book read by the author, because the author knows what he wishes to emphasize and how he or she wants it read. And it is especially nice when the author is so well spoken as Professor Dawkins. Miss Ward adds a lovely compliment to his narration, I wish the two did more books!
I highly recommend this book. I wish the material presented was taught in our society, in the same manner and with the same evidence. And I wish every non-fiction book was this well narrated.
I could have enjoyed reading this book, but I found the narrator to be annoying enough to take my concentration away from the words he was reading. He consistantly emphasized parts of sentences which shouldn't have been emphasized, and didn't emphasize parts which should have been. It was as if he was reading the book for the first time and just wasn't paying attention to what he was reading. It was especially annoying to listen to him end a sentence which hadn't ended, as if he thought the sentence ended on one line only to realize that it carried on the next line.
While I applaud any narrator who "acts" out the book by giving each character a different voice, this narrator's voices were annoying at best. He gives Aronnax's faithful assistant Conseil the mad scientist's Igor's voice, while Mr. Land gets an especially annoying version of Dirty Harry. And most annoying of all, he doesn't give Captain Nemo any of the strong impression that the character is described as having.
I cannot recommend this version to anyone. I feel this is one of the great adventure stories and it is impossible to get any enjoyment out of this version because you are constantly distracted and annoyed.
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