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Shawn Levasseur

Shawn Levasseur

Rockland, ME USA | Listener Since 2002

53
HELPFUL VOTES
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  • 147 titles in library
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  • Atlas Shrugged

    • ABRIDGED (11 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By Ayn Rand
    • Narrated By Edward Herrmann
    Overall
    (843)
    Performance
    (396)
    Story
    (392)

    As passionate as it is profound, Atlas Shrugged is one of the most influential novels of our time. In it, Rand dramatizes the main tenets of Objectivism, her philosophy of rational selfishness. She explores the ramifications of her radical thinking in a world that penalizes human intelligence and integrity.

    Shawn Levasseur says: "Edward Hermann's masterful performance."
    "Edward Hermann's masterful performance."
    Overall

    Other reviews have focused in on the book itself. This review is about this specific recording.

    Normally I don't listen to abridgments, but years ago the only unabridged version of Atlash Shrugged was read by a dreadfully dull speaker who made Al Gore look like Robin Williams. (There is now a new unabridged recording available here, that is most definitely NOT the older one I just described) So when this recording first came out on tape, I picked it up.

    I knew Mr. Hermann as one of those actors you always see in supporting roles but never knew who he was. He was, "That Guy". Though I did remember his anti-IRS movie Harry's War as a favorite of mine.

    At any rate, I picked up this abridgement (though at nearly 12 hours, it's not exactly a quick listen), and loved how Edward fleshed out the characters of Atlas Shrugged with his acting. Forever will his portrayal of the characters be the voices I hear in my head when I read the text. He shifts between differing characters, attitudes, accents, and genders beautifully.

    If the forever rumored film ever comes out virtually every actor will have to measure all the actors against Hermann's performance here.

    I only wish that he had made an unabridged recording.

    For quite a while I'd hoped to find this version on Audible to get a digital version of the recording to replace my cassette tapes. Finally it's here and have bought it for the second time. That alone should let you know how strongly I feel about this version.

    If you normally don't listen to abridged versions, thinking the guts and heart of the book get ripped out in the abridgement. That is not the case here.

    If you find the sheer size of the book daunting, or the length of the unabridged reading too much, this is a great starting point from which you can then decide to read the full text yourself or listen to the unabridged version.

    53 of 53 people found this review helpful

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