Hiassen's books are, in general, a totally fun read.Anyone who has a sense of humor and relishes in meeting new and certainly unusual (and often completely unethical) characters, will enjoy this booik. HIassen's 'good' characters are utterly lovable and his 'bad' characters make your skin crawl. This is easy listening at its best... I found myself eager to pick up where I had left off listening and enjoyed the narration very much. Not the kind of book that is going to change anyone's life, but certainly a fun 'summer beach read'.
I have read this book before in hard copy format and absolutely loved it. But not being one of those fortunate people who can retain history, I wanted to have the audio version on hand to refresh my mind from time to time. What a disappointment this was. This is a fine example of a great book gone bad in audio form. The narration absolutely KILLS what is, overall, a delightful book to read on one's own. I turned it on in the car on a road trip across country and within the first two chapters, darn near fell asleep at the wheel. For some reason, the recording comes across as that nightmare boring History teaching doing an equally boring Q & A with some equally boring students. It's been on my ipod for almost a year now and I haven't touched it. But please don't let this push you away from the author, who is so talented and makes learning about history fun and easy. Do yourself a favor and go buy the book in paperback.
Even some of the most terrific works of literature can come across as less than great if the narrator doesn't do the work justice. But Ron Silver has done a fantastic job narrating this lovely book. This is probably the kind of book I would not be able to get through were I reading it physically, but in audio book form, it is a true pleasure. Detailed descriptions and extensive dialogue that might otherwise seem tedious to the average reader, especially someone new to Roth's work, are a simply joy to take in thanks to Mr. Silver's dedicated 'performance." His accents are charming, and his speed varies according to the tempo of the scene which really helps. Of course, Roth is a wonderful writer, with or without a talented narrator and American Pastoral reminds me of "Middlesex" in both its extensive exploration of a single family's history, and the humor with which its characters are brought to life. Probably a book everyone... especially any potential fiction writers... should read.
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