This is an example of the great value of the audiobook format. It allows you to digest massive narrative history--even while multitasking. The narration is distinctive and very consistent.
I am very pleased the Richard Evans Reich trilogy is available (pt 3 TBA). I am not so keen on the reader. Too many pauses in mid sentence. When he lands a full sentence without a pause it flows so much better. And there are some glaring pronunciation errors (Leon Trossky, etc). Still, to have this on audio is great.
In the 1990's I listened to the older BOT cassette version of this work read by Larry McKeever. He did a good job. To have this redone by Grover Gardner is a HUGE gift to us all (Thank you Grover). He does a much better job and his European pronunciations are very competent. I have read that Shirer's work is not liked by many historians in this field (especially by the Germans) but I find his writing to be on par with the great narrative historians (McCullough, Caro, Chernow, etc.). I am also listening to Richard Evans's Third Reich trilogy and, although its more thoroughly researched, his writing is not near Shirer's in elegance. And the reader is not near the quality of Mr Gardner. One of the lessons learned from this tragic story is that numerous and fractured political parties can lead to disaster for everyone.
While the narrator is competent, easy to listen to, and has a voice well-suited for the topic, there are clear artifacts in the audio production.
There are small sections of frequent and quite noticeable "inserts" that are probably the result of error corrections done after the primary recording. Also, there are times when the narrator makes awkward inflections of certain words that seem unnecessary and out of sync.
These are minor issues when you concentrate on Auletta's very fine and interesting narrative.
The narration is clear and upbeat.
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