George Guidall's performance of this literary classic transports the audience to the slums of St. Petersburg and deep into the mind of Rodion Raskolnikov, a young Russian intellectual. Raskolnikov murders an old woman, a money-lender and pawn-broker he considers repugnant. He reasons that he'll repay his crimes with good deeds. Although he justifies the murder using reason and intellect, he is ultimately consumed by guilt. Crime and Punishment is one of the most influential works of literature in the world. Guidall's tremulous voice captures the severity and suspense of this story, making this an unforgettable experience for the listener.
Fyodor Dostoevsky's Crime and Punishment is universally regarded as one of literature's finest achievements, as the great Russian novelist explores the inner workings of a troubled intellectual. Raskolnikov, a nihilistic young man in the midst of a spiritual crisis, makes the fateful decision to murder a cruel pawnbroker, justifying his actions by relying on science and reason, and creating his own morality system. Dehumanized yet sympathetic, exhausted yet hopeful, Raskolnikov represents the best and worst elements of modern intellectualism. The aftermath of his crime and Petrovich's murder investigation result in an utterly compelling, truly unforgettable cat-and-mouse game. This stunning dramatization of Dostoevsky's magnum opus brings the slums of St. Petersburg and the demons of Raskolnikov's tortured mind vividly to life.
Translation by Constance Garnett, originally published in 1917.
Public Domain (P)1991 by Recorded Books, Inc.
"The novels of Dostoevsky are seething whirlpools...which hiss and boil and suck us in. They are composed purely and wholly of the stuff of the soul." (Virginia Woolf)
The narration for this very long book was GREAT! I often lose track of who's who in a book, and there's a lot of characters. But the narrator keeps them all straight and voices each one beautifully.
The stereo-typical russian novel in length, this book tells a story of redemption for the un-redeemable, but in an incredibly human way.
An excellent audio book. Take a great classic like Crime and Punishment and add George Guidall's superb narration and it just doesn't get any better! I didn't want it to end!
Dostoevsky has created an amazing look into the mind of a killer before and after his act, and it is delivered through the eyes of a student. It is during a time where temporary insanity is catching on and "monomania" is gripping the small streets and cabins of St. Petersberg. The vivid descriptions of the people and land are immense, character development sums up much of this mind bending murder: from the initial act, the chase, and the turmoil therein.
The narrator helps develop the characters superbly with changing his voice to match a person, and delivers the feelings and mood very well. This book was excellent, and the audio version matches its excellence.
George Guidell has done a fantastic job of reading Dostoyevsky's masterpiece. His timing is excellent and his interpretation of each of the characters has a quality and vitality worthy of the task. As one who loves the work of Dostoyevsky, I am deeply grateful to Mr Guidell for an excellent performance. Please Mr Guidell - MORE!!
My mother got her degree in Russian Studies and really pushed me to listen to this book. I don't know what to really say about it, it left me feeling like something was off. Which I think is part of the point. I also just feel wrong saying I enjoyed it, given that it's about a grisly murder and the psychotic breakdown of the murderer. I think I have to go to my fallback, it's an interesting book. It made me think about class structure, morality (what is right), and virtue/vice struggle (doing what you know is right and not what you know is wrong). While there's a glimmer of hope by the end, it's a heavy book and by the end I felt I needed to take a shower. Definitely worth the listen but know what you're in for.
This is a fantastic book all around. The story is wonderful and pulled me along all the way up to the end. There were no slow points and the tension-release game is beautifully played. Even when I knew what was going to happen I was dying to find out how it happened. There is good reason that this is a classic.
I will also say that the reader is superb. He does a great job with the voices without overdoing them and it's always easy to tell who's speaking. This is important when there are so many Russian names being tossed about. I believe he represents the characters and the novel very well.
If you think that something this big, and seemingly heavy, isn't for you - then think again. I would recommend this book to anybody. It is easy to follow and the characters will captivate you. It has instantly become one of my favorite books of all time.
I thought Crime & Punishment was tedious when I read it in high school, but listening to this reading was a completely different experience. I was spellbound by the vivid imagery and the art with which Dostoevsky paints characters' emotions. So many interesting characters with so many interesting traits and range and a fascinating examination of conscience, guilt and atonement. George Guidall is an excellent reader. His ability to differintiate between characters makes this particular book more like a performance than a reading.
You have to find out for yourself, why this book has been popular for decades. Despite its length, I was unable to stop listening because the story is so moving. It is a completely original story with well developed characters and situations.
I feel slightly different than the other listeners here. First, yes this is a great story and narrated by the best. That being said, I found it to be difficult to listen to at times and kept thinking, when will it ever end? I'm not saying don't listen but I am saying, don't think for one minute this is a light "read". Listening to this one feels like heavy work at times.
They don’t write books like this anymore; because people like this don’t exist anymore; and the readers they were written for don’t exist either.
The Russia culture of the middle 19th Century is no more. That is a pity; but it cannot be helped. Perhaps in 150 years people will read of our Century and think it more interesting than their own–if people are still reading books by then.
But in 1861 Crime and Punishment was serialized in the same magazine, and in the same issues, as War and Peace. We are not likely to improve on that–except in one way: you can now listen to it.
If you have the time, 24 solid hours of listening time; and want to enjoy another, richer era, where people still had time to live fully, put on your headphones.
"An intellectually absorbing read."
Din't know whether it was my cup of tea but really enjoyed the characterisations and although unbelievably detailed it was never overdone and displayed the authors psycho-analytical skills in a very satisfying story.
The book deserves its reputation - it's a masterpiece. I'm glad I chose to listen rather than read though, there's a lot of detail and dialogue that I would otherwise have skimmed. The narration is excellent - I suppose I could quibble that I'd have prefered fake Russian accents rather than English and Irish, but Guidall gives a voice to each character that works really well, and he reads beautifully. I cannot believe how good this book is, the hours of listening were absolutely worth it. I'd recommend it to anyone who loves great literature, and also to everyone else.
"Devastating writing, awesome narration!"
I had never read any of the great Russians, audiobooks seemed the best way to do it and on the strength of this title , I will be be listening to more Dostoevsky certainly. I have just acquired The Idiot here, I only hope its narration is close to the awesome high quality of George Guidhall who with Crime and Punishment is a master of this art. This book is utterly contemporary whilst painting a general and particular portrait of time and place, it has everything. Such a masterpiece needs a master narrator, George Guidall is awesome.
"Crime And Punishment - A Classic"
This book is a classic and because of its topics, period & style, it is a hard book to read. This was well read & a tale worth hearing.
"Well, I finally managed to get through it......"
This tome appeared on my undergraduate syllabus more than twenty years ago. The excuse at that time to my personal tutor was that amongst the fury of Newcastle Exhibition Ale, the sticky carpetted nightclubs, concessionary theatre seats and being located on the circuit of the seemingly endless parade of British bands that passed through the freezing fogged sweatshop of the North East on the road to five hit singles and a dedicated fan's website - life was just too short and the character names just too long. With the closure of the coalmines, the arrival of urban cool, the earnest but angry liberals now become the ever-so apologetic, control-obsesessed establishment and comfortable middle-age, it seems like everythings changed....but, oh dear, oh dear...
At twenty five hours, this represents great value for your subscription buck. George Guidhal, (who whistles through the latest Umberto Eco with light-fingered gravitas)is an impressive guide, but there are ideals in life and - as much as one is obliged to travel in cheap-flight inertia, suffer our congested motorways, doze quietly whilst the kids entertain themselves or scroll endlessly through TV schedules in forlorn search for something to watch - this is still a lot of work for not a great deal in return. A circuitous route through Petersburg, an early stream of consciousness dammed and re-directed at various points by a subsidiary cast of characters who are all but impossible to keep in check and an epilogue that truncates and re-writes the action of all that went before....but I finally managed to get through it..Onto George and Arthur with gusto!
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