Very good, very sad book. Kathleen Gati has a warm voice and reads smoothly, but makes no attempt at getting Russian pronunciations right. People, places and Russian words range from slightly off to laughably wrong. Why do audiobook producers believe that one East European accent is the same as another? I'd have enjoyed it more with a Russian-speaking reader.
This is a very intelligent reading of a difficult book. I was frankly disappointed by the print version, but Simon Vance manages to get beyond the jokes, cliches, homages and frank missteps to find the vein of utterly unsentimental humanism I look for from Morgan. Passages (and profanity) that only grated on the page play better here. Fair warning -- there is a good deal of graphic sex in the first half. I think it works (well, mostly) as characterization and as plot device, but you won't want to listen to it in the grocery store.
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