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A Tale of Two Cities Audiobook

A Tale of Two Cities

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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 (745 )
5 star
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Story
4.5 (374 )
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3 star
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2 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Ricanzdrummer 10-20-15
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    70
    5
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    Performance
    Story
    "Excellent!"
    What did you love best about A Tale of Two Cities?

    The story, as acted out by Martin Jarvis.


    What other book might you compare A Tale of Two Cities to and why?

    Nicholas Nickelby


    Which character – as performed by Martin Jarvis – was your favorite?

    Jaques


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

    When the Doctor explained his feelings towards his future son-in-law.


    Any additional comments?

    Martin Jarvis did a superb job narrating this novel...bringing the characters to life with his authentic British dialects.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    C. Walkup 06-17-15
    C. Walkup 06-17-15
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    1
    1
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    "Well done and easy to listen to"

    The reader did an excellent job of using different voices as he was reading to help you follow the story. It's a classic story with lots of interesting twists and turns and a surprise ending!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Agnar T�mas M�ller 04-23-15 Member Since 2014
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    5
    1
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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
  •  
    Lenny Methuen, MA, United States 12-25-12
    Lenny Methuen, 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
    HELPFUL VOTES
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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
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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
    HELPFUL VOTES
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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
    REVIEWS
    10
    1
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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
  •  
    Wiregrass18 Alabama, United States 07-31-11
    Wiregrass18 Alabama, United States 07-31-11 Member Since 2015

    Wiregrass18

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "What a joy!"

    Listening to Dickens with such wonderful narration by Martin Jarvis is a complete joy. I enjoyed it forty years ago and loved it again with this listening.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kenneth Cary, NC, United States 07-14-11
    Kenneth Cary, NC, United States 07-14-11 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    98
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    3
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    "My favorite Dickens yet"

    While it took a while to get going, once it did, it was enthralling. As usual, Dickens does an amazing job with the characters. They are so real you have no problem imagining them in your minds-eye. Narrator was amazing as well. Highly recommend this one.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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  • Brendan
    7/2/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "very interesting and love the language "

    although it was long it kept me wanting to listen to more. it gave me insight into the times of the French revolution.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • ms
    6/25/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Extraordinarily brilliant"

    I am now a Dickens fan , I struggled in the beginning to enjoy the story or understand the full meaning as Dickens prose is so rich and the language complicated in parts . However I persevered , re listened and repeated until I got the flow and can honestly say it's one of the most brilliant stories I have listened to . I now have a much deeper understanding of the French Revolution . I loved it .

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Mathew
    London, Middlesex, United Kingdom
    6/8/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Not the best of times for me I'm afraid."
    If this book wasn’t for you, who do you think might enjoy it more?

    I have really tried to listen to this book several times over eight years. I was a big fan of the Dickens I read at school and hoped to understand this book more. Unfortunately the start is just so slow it would need a listener with a great deal of patience to get through the first couple of hours.


    Would you ever listen to anything by Charles Dickens again?

    Yes, although I am not going to until I've successfully completed this book.


    What three words best describe Martin Jarvis’s performance?

    Excellent soothing voice


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from A Tale of Two Cities?

    The road to Paris. This seems a long way to add a small amount of backstory and not a lot happens.


    Any additional comments?

    The book is obviously a classic and Martin Jarvis is an excellent narrator, I am looking forward to completing the book one day and my opinion will probably be different then. For now though I cannot rate this higher.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Tweedledum
    UK
    6/2/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Recalled to life"

    Martin Jarvis reads Dickens heart-rending historical novel of revolutionary France magnificently. I read the book long ago and its impact on me then was such that I doubted if I could bear to read it again. But the narration has been so compelling that I had to put aside everything else to see it through.

    Thoroughly recommend this recording.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Kier Home
    5/26/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A fantastic classic."

    I loved it. Powerful, emotional and breathtaking in its scope. A truly fantastic story with characters you care about.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • John
    4/16/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Just brilliant"

    My first Dickens and it didn't disappoint. So much to say about its merits but aside from Dickens genius I applaud the narrator (Jarvis): beautiful rich voice which a wealth of magnificent characters wonderfully portrayed.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Paul Archer
    12/31/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Always a great read"
    What made the experience of listening to A Tale of Two Cities the most enjoyable?

    I love Dickens, the way he describes detail, so easy for me to build a picture in my mind, Martin Jarvis does a excellent job too.


    What about Martin Jarvis’s performance did you like?

    The fact that he able to voice so many of the characters, it was as if each had a different actor !


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Ashleigh M
    12/1/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Story Not for Me."

    The narration of this was great but, for me, the story wasn't. Of the Dickens I've read, this is my least favourite and honestly if it had been my first Dickens I'm not sure I'd have read more of his work. The opening paragraph is possibly one of the best in literature but, sadly, the novel as a whole didn't live up to that for me!

    It's a personal thing, and I'd implore that everyone give Dickens a go! This audiobook was great, just the story didn't do it for me!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • scott
    10/21/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "rekindled my love for this story"

    the narration brought this classic to life. first book I ever cried too, again I shed a few years

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Golden Hours
    Liverpool
    10/16/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A magnificent performance by Martin Jarvis"

    This is a wonderful story made all the better by the narration. Martin Jarvis brings every character to life. Highly recommended.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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