All the delightful and bizarre inhabitants of Wonderland are here: the White Rabbit and the Cheshire Cat, the hooka-smoking Caterpillar and the Mad Hatter, the March Hare and the Ugly Duchess . . and, of course, Alice herself - growing alternately taller and smaller, attending demented tea parties and eccentric croquet games, observing everything with clarity and rational amazement.
(P)2005 Brilliance Audio, Inc.
Not only are these two books amazing but the audiobook is very fun to listen to. Michael Page does a great job. This audiobook is worth having and can be enjoyed by young and old.
A part-time buffoon and ersatz scholar specializing in BS, pedantry, schmaltz and cultural coprophagia.
$4.5 for Alice and $3.5 with change for her Looking Glass. It is nice to experience Alice in a non-Disney format. I loved the poetry, the logical fallacies, the absurdity of it all. I loved Lewis Carroll's prose. Carroll wrote with clean, beautiful sharpness filled with word games, puns and riddles. The clarity of his prose serves as a counterweight for the fancy of his imagination and the smoke of his dreamscapes. Through the Looking Glass was more of the same, but just didn't ride my fancy as well. Page did an admirable job of keeping up with Carroll's quickie, tricky prose.
The beginning of this review must not be understated. What have I been missing all these years? Admittedly, this is a first read. And while chucking the shame of having not read it until 47 (yes, that is the current age of said reviewer!), I am flushed with pleasure of having made the trip(they were originally published separately). On listening to it, I quickly noticed Carroll's playing out, if not outright scorn, for logical fallacies, and while on a few occasions Alice displays a few of her own, there is such a heavy handedness in the use of ill-logic by the "adults" of the story, that I wonder if Carroll isn't taking more than a few digs into the minds of adults, who from time to time engage in circuitous and contradictory arguments. Both books seem to be playing with and poking fun at the fact that as adults, the bigger wonders are often reduced to such reductionism in order to boost one's ego, which you see time and time again with all the adult characters in the book. In fact, a primer for reading this book may in fact be C. K. Chesterton's argument for fantasy in the Introduction to this edition:
"It seemed to me that he didn't follow me with sufficient delicacy, so I softened my tone. 'Can you not see", I said, "that fairy tales in their essence are quite solid and straightforward;but that this everlasting fiction about modern life is in its nature essentially incredible? Folk-lore means that the soul is sane,but that the universe is wild and full of marvels. Realism means that the world is dull and full of routine, but that the soul is sick and screaming. The problem of the fairy tale is-what will a healthy man do with a fantastic world?" (Alice's Adventures in Wonderland & Through the Looking-Glass; Introduction, vi).
Alice's reactions to those who claim to be much more mature than her, can rest with her wonder as a child not to be corrupted by the cynicism of ideas reduced to mere philosophical positions and suppositions. This would be one of the main points in the conversion of C.S. Lewis to Christianity. And to some respects, it is an invitation for us to give our minds a rest, and let the universe pan itself out. Alice comes out much better than her "betters", because she is willing to let go, as many children do, rather than be sucked in and drowned in a world of so many abstractions that one misses the opportunity to just pick up scented rushes and smell them for all their worth.
So with wholehearted approval, I support Alice's trips to wonderland, and for Lewis Carroll who gave us the exclusive trip to go along with her.
And like me, take great pleasure in laughing at our pretenses and take once more the mantle of a child's innocence and wonder along the way!
This has always been one of my favorite stories. Being able to listen to it just makes me love it all the more, and allows me to approach it in a whole new way.
I might have just had high expectations because of how much I love this story, but I think he could have done a better job with the emotion of the characters. He has great voices (and there are a lot of those), but each character seems to be shown only by their voice, and doesn't have much personality beyond that. It makes it feel a little gimmicky. All said and done, though, this is not a big deal. The book was a joy to listen to.
the book had been sitting for nearly forty years on my bookshelve. the narrator, who could be a company of narrators by himself, enticed me to dust off the book.
I have always loved Alice, but this is a great version to listen to over and over. The reader is great, and the story is a classic. I highly recommend this for everyone!
I like to read but listening is better.
This was an interesting experience for me. I adored the animated Disney version of Alice in Wonderland. I watched it as a child, and then when my little brother was a child and I was a teen I discovered it again and it became one of my favorite things. I've always loved Alice in Wonderland imagery and art.
Recently I was looking for an inexpensive fiction audiobook on audible and it occurred to me that somehow I had never read the real stories of Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass. Making this all the more surprising is the fact that I got my degree in English (and it took me a LONG time to graduate so I took quite a few classes). Sure, I'd covered the Jabberwocky and some of the other poems or scenes in school, but somehow I just never had the opportunity to read these wonderful books all the way through. So while I was familiar with these stories, I was finally getting to experience "the real thing," or at least the original thing.
I think my favorite aspect of the stories is the character of Alice herself. I love the personality that Carroll created for her and the way she talks and thinks. It's easy to appreciate all the little nonsensical twists and jokes that Carroll came up with to explain things being upside down and backward. There's quite a bit of humor in the stories and at some points I definitely laughed audibly.
Something that I never realized was that the Disney film "Alice in Wonderland" is not a film version of "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland" but a new story altogether. It is a combination of "Wonderland" and "Through the Looking Glass." I never knew how much of "Looking Glass" was incorporated into the animated film.
However, it isn't just a combination in the sense that there are parts of both stories in the film. I always assumed that much of the original work was left out of the story told by the film. What I never realized was that much of the movie plot is very different from the way things happen in the book. I found it interesting that the screen play writers took little bits from some scenes of the book and used them in different ways in their movie.
For example, The Queen in the animated film is really a combination of "The Queen of Hearts" from "Adventures in Wonderland" and "The Red Queen" from "Looking Glass." The "Unbirthday" joke appears as a part of the Tea Party scene in the film, but it occurs in a totally different part of the story in the book. In the book, it is Alice who can't remember the poem about the Busy Bee and instead recites a version about the Little Crocodile. In the animated version it is the Caterpillar that comes up with that new version.
One aspect of the books that really confused me was when characters referred to as "The Hatter" and "The Hare" appear in "Looking Glass" during the Lion and Unicorn scenes. They don't seem to remember seeing her before. That could be explained away by the fact that things are so weird in the imaginary land. However, Alice doesn't seem to recognize them either, and that's a bit more puzzling. In fact, so far as I could perceive, there's no evidence given that these actually are the same characters seen in "Wonderland" referred to as "The Mad Hatter" and "The March Hare." Perhaps they are completely different characters, but it's hard to understand why Carroll would have done that.
While I loved the books about as much as I expected, I think a lot of that had to do with being familiar with the characters and the stories from the animated film and from the art work. I have to admit that there were a few times that I thought to myself that if I had never seen the movie I'm not sure I would have found this or that scene or this or that character at all interesting.
The two major examples of this for me were the Caterpillar and the Cheshire Cat. In the original story, the Caterpillar scene is fairly brief and doesn't have any of the same feel as the scene as depicted in the movie. As for the Cheshire Cat, his original character is similar to the one from the film, but he isn't very mischievous and his brief reappearance at the croquet match has little impact on the action. I came to the conclusion that the illustrations that were included in the books must have had a major influence on the book's popularity.
Michael Page does a great job as narrator. Obviously, the story can only be told by a narrator with an old-time British accent. His done and rhythm are perfect. He also does a very impressive job coming up with clearly distinguishable and consistent voices for the many different characters.
It was nice to put the story in order. I have seen many versions of this book in movie form, but like so many , the movies twist things all up. It was great to read both these stories one after the other. Still the mind twisting , acid trip world you know, with some characters and details you may not.
I love this book. I loved it as a child. Wild and yet it all makes a strange kind of sense. A sensible girl in a crazy world.
I love Alice.
Anything might happen and probably does.
I've read this story many times and seen movies as well. This book is a great listen, well performed. Classic Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass. I will keep it handy to listen again and again.
These are both marvellous books that helped me through some dark times when I was young. As an adult they still make me smile, think and look at the world a bit differently.
This is a well presented reading, easy to listen to, and the two books being together makes for great value.
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