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A Tale of Two Cities | [Charles Dickens]

A Tale of Two Cities

"It was the best of times, it was the worst of times"; "It is a far, far better rest that I go to than I have ever known"; so the novel begins and ends with some of Dicken's best-known words, and between the two is every Briton's view of the worst excesses of the French Revolution.
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Publisher's Summary

"It was the best of times, it was the worst of times"; "It is a far, far better rest that I go to than I have ever known"; so the novel begins and ends with some of Dicken's best-known words, and between the two is every Briton's view of the worst excesses of the French Revolution.

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What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (637 )
5 star
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Overall
4.4 (279 )
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3 star
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Story
4.4 (269 )
5 star
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4 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
 (7)
Performance
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  •  
    Guy virginia beach, VA, USA 08-01-06
    Guy virginia beach, VA, USA 08-01-06 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
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    "Great classic..."

    I tried to listen to this on CD a few years ago, but I would find my attention wandering. I gave it another try, and I'm glad I did. The narrator is wonderful, and this is a book I will listen to again in the future.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tim oakville, ON, Canada 05-21-06
    Tim oakville, ON, Canada 05-21-06
    HELPFUL VOTES
    8
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    "Very well read"

    Martin Jarvis does an excellent job narrating this title. I thoroughly enjoyed this book.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Agnar T�mas M�ller 04-23-15 Member Since 2014
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    4
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    "Horrible story, great reading"

    Very uninteresting and a boring story - characters are so uninteresting, very overrated
    Good reading though by the narrator
    Keep away

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    mimi 01-31-15
    mimi 01-31-15 Member Since 2015
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    "Mimi"

    It was an excellent audio of the book. Third time to hear it and enjoy it more each time I hear it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rick Fullerton, US, Canada 01-23-15
    Rick Fullerton, US, Canada 01-23-15 Member Since 2013
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    2
    2
    Overall
    "All time classic"

    It was even more enjoyable the second time. Has so much depth of detail, emotion and chapters. One of the best ever.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lenny Groveland, MA, United States 12-25-12
    Lenny Groveland, MA, United States 12-25-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Masterful Delivery of a Dickens Classic!"
    Where does A Tale of Two Cities rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Audiobooks are invariably somewhat "hit-or-miss," as one would surely never confuse something like a Dickens novel for a "closet play." In this case, however, Martin Jarvis has delivered an absolutely stunning performance, with smooth delivery of the different voices and a marvelous sense of pacing. Naturally, I feel somewhat reluctant to rate this volume against others I have heard, but suffice it to say the Jarvis presentation is absolutely as fine as any yet known to me.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of A Tale of Two Cities?

    Jarvis holds the listener's interest through the long, descriptive passages (which may, in fact, sour some readers on Dickens). He is at his best toward the end, when one may truly appreciate the development of Sydney Carton. Jarvis effects the transformation of the character splendidly yet effortlessly.


    What does Martin Jarvis bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    While I very much enjoyed the audiobook, I maintain the prejudice of my generation -- to wit, that it is probably better to read than to listen. The question above begs the issue of story-telling vs. writing, and these are two different art forms. Let us simply conclude that both Jarvis and Dickens have much to offer!


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    I can readily imagine that some listeners have been (or will be) moved to tears by the noble sacrifice and last sentiments of Carton at the end.


    Any additional comments?

    Tremendous production! Bravo!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    GERALD Calgary, AB, Canada 12-17-12
    GERALD Calgary, AB, Canada 12-17-12
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    "It was the worst of Dickens"

    Just for context, I love Charles Dickens. I just hate this novel. It shows Dickens at his worst, which is when he uses his novels to preach at his readers. This novel is so heavy handed and over the top that it can't be taken seriously. His characters are so one dimensional that they are totally unbelievable. This is a constant weakness in Dickens' work, his heroes and heroines are so pure and virtuous that they border on becoming caricatures. In this work, this weakness is pronounced and coupled with the prolonged bombastic discourses that Dickens engages in on political and social issues creates a fatal combination.
    I couldn't finish this audiobook, although I have read the novel to completion. I found myself forcing myself to listen to it, just to get my money's worth. Eventually I gave up, listening to an audiobook should be a pleasure and not a penance. Try another of Dickens' novels, for he is a truly great writer... just try to avoid him when he climbs on his soapbox. (try The Pickwick Papers for a real treat.. a bit slow starting but a joy to be savored slowly)

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Braden New Carlisle, OH, United States 12-02-11
    Braden New Carlisle, OH, United States 12-02-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
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    "Best book I've ever listened to. Wow!"

    I had never read or listened to any works by Dickens before this. I would honestly say this is the best book I've experienced, ever, and I am no youngster (52 years old) and a fairly avid reader. Simply outstanding story!

    The narrator of this version is also incredible! The voices are distinctly different for each character, and his voice pleasing. This adds more to the story than you can imagine. He is top-notch.

    You simply MUST get this audio. I literally could not put it down. I think anything else I listen to is going to be a comedown, after this.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kathleen United States 11-25-11
    Kathleen United States 11-25-11 Member Since 2012
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    "Fantastic story. Excellent performance."

    No matter how many times I listen to this, I love it.
    I imagine Dickens himself must have sounded just like Martin Jarvis.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    HomeTownUSA 10-07-11
    HomeTownUSA 10-07-11
    ratings
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    5
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    "One of the best"
    What did you love best about A Tale of Two Cities?

    Great story with great narration


    Have you listened to any of Martin Jarvis???s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    A perfect performance by the narrator. I will definitely look for more works by Mr. Jarvis.


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

    The horror and pain of this place and time, and how it is captured by Dickens in this story, truly makes this one of the greatest books ever.


    Any additional comments?

    Why the bad editing? The chapters, and especially the ending, are truncated abruptly. And there is an annoying popping sound in a few parts of the book. It is hard to believe that there was not more care taken in the recording of such a great story with incredible narration. However, don't let this deter you from listening to one of the most entertaining readings available on Audible.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 21-30 of 39 results PREVIOUS1234NEXT
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  • Sparrow
    Ryde,, United Kingdom
    2/24/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Excellently read. Brought the characters to life."

    The story isn't one of my favourites but due to the readers talent it made the listen worth while. I purchased this as a Kindle book and chose the option to purchase the listen feature. I'm so glad I did.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • vicky osullivan
    1/27/15
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    Performance
    Story
    "Why have I never read this before?"

    exceptional story! wonderfully written, excellent narrative, audio book was essential but now I must read more Dickens!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Angela
    1/16/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Excellent! Brilliant."

    Narrator was excellent, story was great. My first Charles dickens read. Just downloaded bleak house. Great!!!!! Thank you very much

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • HA
    9/24/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great Story - Well narrated"
    Would you consider the audio edition of A Tale of Two Cities to be better than the print version?

    Have not read the print version


    What did you like best about this story?

    The characters


    Have you listened to any of Martin Jarvis’s other performances? How does this one compare?

    No


    If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    n/a


    Any additional comments?

    Martin Jarvis reads this very well....kept me wanting to listen to it continuously

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Stephen
    8/14/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Pompous, over-rated, over-blown, convoluted"
    Would you try another book written by Charles Dickens or narrated by Martin Jarvis?

    Dickens - never. I keep trying and keep failing to enjoy a moment of his books.
    Martin Jarvis - excellent narrator


    Any additional comments?

    I may be a knuckle-dragging philistine, but there are many better ways to spend a few hours.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Jennifer
    Buckinghamshire, UK
    7/31/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A classic story read well"

    A Tale of Two Cities is my favourite of Dickens' works. Martin Jarvis narrated the story extremely well.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Richard
    LEICESTER, United Kingdom
    1/23/13
    Overall
    "Brutal and gripping story brilliantly narrated"

    I listened to this straight after listening to Pickwick Papers (another great reading by David Timson) and you would hardly believe they were both written by the same author. As well as being a great story it was also a great education as to how things were at that time and encouraged me to do more research of the period. I am so impressed by the amazing talent of Martin Jarvis. I've listened to him read, or I should say perform, Hard Times and Great Expectations and he really makes it an experience to remember. I just can't work out how he does it, surely he doesn't just sit down and read it off live...there must be overdubs and editing surely?!...it's brilliant anyway!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • John Blackmore
    Ely, UK
    12/23/12
    Overall
    "The Best"

    One of the best readings of the most popular English novel. Will certainly listen to this recording again and again.







    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Joanna
    Richmond, United Kingdom
    12/23/12
    Overall
    "Delightful"

    I love books. Love to hold them, feel and smell the pages so I thought I would not like audio books. I gave this a try because of a promotion and now I'm converted. This particular book came to life in the expert hands of the narrator who managed to 'play' so many characters successfully. I thoroughly enjoyed it!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Tracy
    Brentwood, United Kingdom
    5/2/12
    Overall
    "The best of Dickens"

    Dickens stories continue to be popular, and there are many well known and excellent ones to choose from, but in my opinion this is the best of the best. Set at the time of the French Revolution, this is one of Dickens' two historical novels (the other being Barnaby Rudge set during the Gordon Riots). The narration is of the excellent quality one would expect from Martin Jarvis, and I cannot recommend this recording highly enough.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 21-30 of 32 results PREVIOUS1234NEXT

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