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Thosigmar

Member Since 2013

4
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 3 reviews
  • 33 ratings
  • 93 titles in library
  • 31 purchased in 2014
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  • How to Listen to and Understand Great Music, 3rd Edition

    • ORIGINAL (36 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By The Great Courses
    • Narrated By Professor Robert Greenberg
    Overall
    (427)
    Performance
    (386)
    Story
    (379)

    Great music is a language unto its own, a means of communication of unmatched beauty and genius. And it has an undeniable power to move us in ways that enrich our lives-provided it is understood.If you have ever longed to appreciate great concert music, to learn its glorious language and share in its sublime pleasures, the way is now open to you, through this series of 48 wonderful lectures designed to make music accessible to everyone who yearns to know it, regardless of prior training or knowledge.

    Lee the reader says: "Wonderful, I've wanted this for so long...but..."
    "A mind-enriching listening experience"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up How to Listen to and Understand Great Music, 3rd Edition in three words, what would they be?

    Absolutely. Bloody. Marvellous.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of How to Listen to and Understand Great Music, 3rd Edition?

    Too many to single out. There were several moments that I considered "Aha-Erlebnisse", as experienced through Prof Greenberg's insights, naturally.


    Which character – as performed by Professor Robert Greenberg – was your favorite?

    Jes' hisself, of course. The more you listen, the more you appreciate his humour and presentation.He has a genius for offering great insights against a background of light-hearted banter. And his enthusiasm is irresistible.


    Any additional comments?

    I've been a lover of "classical" music and opera all my life, but have had no formal training in music. Can't even read a damn note. In spite of this shortcoming, and regrettably unable to grasp some of the more subtle technical points, I've been able to follow the lectures in broad flow with pure pleasure. Many of his comments are "stunners", and I'm not joking. Just a single example: He remarks, after a glorious explanation of the passacaglia form as used by Bach, that the passacaglia can be regarded as a “metaphor for the invisible hand of God controlling the rich chaos of the everyday”. This just took my breath away (and not that I'm a believer). Old, and feeling depressed? Get this. Even better if you're young and your mind is still fresh.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Magus

    • UNABRIDGED (26 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By John Fowles
    • Narrated By Nicholas Boulton
    Overall
    (141)
    Performance
    (122)
    Story
    (126)

    John Fowles’s The Magus was a literary landmark of the 1960s. Nicholas Urfe goes to a Greek island to teach at a private school and becomes enmeshed in curious happenings at the home of a mysterious Greek recluse, Maurice Conchis. Are these events, involving attractive young English sisters, just psychological games, or an elaborate joke, or more? Reality shifts as the story unfolds. The Magus reflected the issues of the 1960s perfectly, and it continues to create tension and concern today.

    Darwin8u says: "One of the best novels that I really think I hate."
    "Brilliant book, incomparable reading"
    Overall
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    Where does The Magus rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    First.


    What other book might you compare The Magus to and why?

    "The Magus" is something in itself. I think Fowles used to express his admiration for "Le Grand Meaulnes", which I read decades ago and can't remember (oi). Have bought the Audible version, though, and still need to listen to it. Perhaps a reading of Fowles's "The Aristos" (his second book, published two years before "The Magus"), might not be a bad idea in preparation for "Magus".


    Have you listened to any of Nicholas Boulton’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    Not yet, but looking at his other readings. Incidentally, he is particularly good at reading female voices. In some other audiobooks (e.g. two versions of "The Alexandria Quartet") the male readers would have done better in keeping to a more normal pitch.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    There are several brilliant moments and parts, but the scene in which Conchis hypnotises Nicholas was particularly masterfully done. Boulton's reading makes one aware of something magical, "metaphysical", totally illusory, and irresistible. Perhaps fatal, too. The reading achieves what the printed word can't do quite as well: mesmerise the listener.


    Any additional comments?

    Boulton's reading made me aware of many things that I missed in my own readings of "The Magus". For me, his reading made this book shimmer all the more.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Iliad: The Fitzgerald Translation

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By Robert Fitzgerald (translator), Homer
    • Narrated By Dan Stevens
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (17)
    Performance
    (17)
    Story
    (17)

    Since it was first published more than 25 years ago, Robert Fitzgerald's prizewinning translation of Homer's battle epic has become a classic in its own right: a standard against which all other versions of The Iliad are compared. Fitzgerald's work is accessible, ironic, faithful, written in a swift vernacular blank verse that "makes Homer live as never before" (Library Journal).

    Tad Davis says: "Beautiful"
    "An inspired translation, a vibrant reading"
    Overall
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    Any additional comments?

    A translation that begins with a word summing up the entire "Iliad" promises much, and it doesn't fail this promise. I am so happy that this version has been made available – in the same class as Richmond Lattimore's translation,

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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