Hemingway's frank portrayal of the love between Lieutenant Henry and Catherine Barkley, caught in the inexorable sweep of war, glows with an intensity unrivaled in modern literature, while his description of the German attack on Caporetto, of lines of fired men marching in the rain, hungry, weary, and demoralized, is one of the greatest moments in literary history.
A story of love and pain, of loyalty and desertion, A Farewell to Arms, written when he was 30 years old, represents a new romanticism for Hemingway.
©1929 Charles Scribner's Sons. Copyright renewed ©1957 Ernest Hemingway; (P)2006 Simon & Schuster Inc. AUDIOWORKS is an imprint of Simon & Schuster Audio Division, Simon & Schuster, Inc.
Hemingway's rich description is, I believe, the key to his work. It make you feel like you are there. The grit and horrer of war are well documented but at the same time the humanity of the characters comes through. The ending...well...I won't go there but one comes away with a strong sense of the futility of war.
I am an avid eclectic reader.
John Slattery did an excellent job in narrating the book. I had read "The Modern Scholar: WW1" by John Ramsden and he Listed "A Farewell To Arms" on the reading list and said it covered the fighting between Italy and Austria in WWI. But I was disappointed because there was very little information about the war and was primarily a love story. I am not sure why Ramsden list this book on his reading list. I have enjoyed other Hemingway book so maybe my disappointment was in my expectations.
This is a love story. It does have good scenes of war from time to time but as a whole this is a love story. Personally I was hoping for more of the war side of things but I did enjoy the presentation of the characters and the overall plot of the book. It was well writen and well read. I would recomened it.
I liked the reader. He didn't drone me to sleep. It was very easy to listen along and he read at just the right pace. And his voice isn't obnoxious.
This is a classic tale of love and loss during WWI, and a must read (listen) for any fan of American literature. Slattery does an excellent job of reading the story.
I had to read the book within a week for a English Lit. class in which I had a quiz after completion. There would have been no feasible way I could have done this if I tried to read the book without this tool. Great to listen to and I was able to visualize the settings and the characters..I received an "A" on the quiz.I will continue to order audibles. One last note the voices in the story kept me drawn to what was going to happen next.
I think John Slattery does a great job on this book. First, I have to admit that I first read this novel more than 40 years ago and didn't pick it up again until now. It was the first adult novel that I ever read voluntarily (by adult I mean not The Hardy Boys, etc.). I still like it even though I still remember how it ends. Second, I'm a fan of Slattery from MadMen and many other shows and movies. In this book, he often uses an Italian accent with an ease that makes me think he must have spent a few years there. He also uses at least 4 other accents at various times. It is not at all difficult to "see" Slattery as a young Hemingway during WW 1. One problem I have with Hemingway is keeping track of who is talking during long dialogues. Slattery succeeds most of the time even though I'm driving while listening. I do worry that "The Sun Also Rises" will defeat me as it did when I tried to read it as my second Hemingway.
I loved For whom the Bell Tolls, so I was surprised at how dull and boring the story was here. And the performance made it hard for me to think these two cared much for each other at all. Disappointed.
"Farewell to a good listen"
A great book damaged by poor reading. The monotonous narration leaves this lifeless. Conversations are particularly dead. A disappointment.
The experience has taught me to listen to the preview of each download now.
"Narrator performs book"
For many chapters I couldn't get over the impression that this was a take-off of Hemmingway's style. The 'Janet and John' style, as it sounds to UK listeners (of a certain age). But, Hemmingway builds his characters from conversation - the way they talk - and this narrator almost converts the book to a play at some points. I loved the conversation (soliloquy, since the narrator is talking to himself) where he asks himself 'what if his lover/girlfriend dies (in childbirth)'. I can't imagine how it would look on a page - but played by this actor... really something.
"No one besides Hemingway"
It's so wonderful to listen to this novel. You hear every word, every tone - when you read you can miss a lot. John Slattery gives life to the - on the surface - subdued lovestory. On my Top Ten!
"In Another Accent"
John Slattery does a fine job narrating Hemingway's classic novel. He gets the balance between the hard-bitten laconic tone of the narrative, from the terse war reflections to the suppressed pain at the end. He negotiates the accents (American, Italian, English, Scottish, Swiss) convincingly. I read the text alongside the audio and I thought Slattery's reading brought out tones and inflections I might have missed on the page.
The narrator, Frederic Henry, dominates the novel. It's his take on the events he recounts.
In addition to Henry's narrative voice, I liked the way Slattery realised the Italian characters. He did not resort to the stereotype caricatures that an inferior reader might have attempted in order to play to the gallery.
It is too dense a work for a single sitting. The reading makes the listener want to sit and reflect on scenes and chapters.
One of Hemingway's enduring qualities is that he writes on the page the way his narrators would speak. There are several good readings available. William Hurt's reading of The Sun Also Rises is top quality. Stacy Keach's readings of the short stories are excellent. It's a pity that Alexander Scourby's readings of the stories appear to be out of the catalogue, but you can still enjoy his reading of The Great Gatsby, which is masterly. John Slattery's reading of A Farewell To Arms is in the same league.
"This one has legs?but not wings"
The myth of Hemingway the man and the Boy?s Own nature of his subject-matter sometimes obscures the reader?s ability to evaluate his style and the quality of his prose. I remember years ago his short staccato style being described as having the purity of a clean mountain stream. He is primarily a story teller and does this by retreating as a writer and hiding behind the scenery delivering enough words to get us quickly through the plot. And it is the plot that is the point.
Interesting enough as a story, but the price paid is evident in the interplay between Lieutenant Frederic Henry and Catherine Barkley which remains two dimensional.
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