At 34 hours in length, this is quite an undertaking, but there's no one better qualified than Simon Vance to lead us through this audio journey. He parses the author's long sentences well, pausing sufficiently to make the details easy to follow while still maintaining a quick enough pace to keep the story going. Most enjoyable is his voicing of the myriad characters who appear in the narrative - and characters they certainly are. Vance times their occasionally hilarious exchanges especially well. All of this is delivered in a manner that suggests that Vance revels in Dickens's prose and sly humor, and the listener cannot help but revel along with him. Three cheers for Vance - and not the least for his stamina!
In David Copperfield - the novel he described as his "favorite child" - Dickens drew revealingly on his own experiences to create one of his most exuberant and enduringly popular works, filled with tragedy and comedy in equal measure.
©1923 Public Domain; (P)2009 Tantor
Even though Dickens consistently indulges in hyperbole and melodrama, it can't seriously detract from his brilliant, dry wit and amazing ability to create compelling characters and produce wonderful dialogue.Simon Vance did a great job of reading this. I particularly liked his pace and expression.
It rings true.
Alot of talent! He is able to increase both the humor and the tension in the story with his expressive voice and excellent timing.
Yes. I cried when Mr. Dick approaches David to tell him that he can help Doctor Strong and his wife because he knows he is mentally ill and that this factor will help him to approach the problem where someone else could not. I have a retarded brother and I can tell now and then that he does sense the difference between himself and others and it does bother him.
O how I wish we had the values and morals found in Dickens in our society today
No, but it sure comes close.
The performance, Dicken's humor. To listen to the story as an adult after having loved it as a teenager is a real treat. Far more moving than I expected, especially when David begins to reflect on his "undisciplined heart."
Love listening to non-fiction & fiction if the story is exciting.Favorite narrator: Simon Vance! Also loved The Goldfinch!
Simon Vance makes any book come alive.
Great Expectations was equally as good.
Just as good. I have several audiobooks narrated by him & love them all.
Dickens has a way of making me giggle, which I love. There were some special moments when he describes the interaction between mother & baby.
I wish we used vocabulary as multi-colored as Dickens.
I read somewhere that Queen Victoria's favorite book was David Copperfield, I know why now. It's timeless and intriguing.
This is my 4th Dickens book, and Copperfield is the best.
Charles Dickens was an amazing writer. This is a must read. The story just takes you in and you live it all with David Copperfield.
Equal to the task-no easy achievement
You've read the classic book now enjoy the movie that follows the story
This was my first Charles Dickens; I think the review "Dickens in Full Sentimental Mode" captures my reaction well. The characters were brilliantly drawn and vivid. I think it could have been trimmed a bit without being hurt, and a few of the resolutions of story lines and the happy ending did feel a bit contrived, but I loved spending time with these characters. I stand in awe of Simon Vance's narration, and wish I could shake his hand. By chance I listened to the interview with Lemony Snicket that's available (free) on Audible just as I started this novel. Snicket narrated three of his wonderful "Series of Unfortunate Events" novels but, as he describes in the interview, he found it the most grueling experience of his life and had to pass the job over to Tim Curry (too bad, as we loved Snicket's readings). He conveyed how very difficult it is to narrate a book, which made Vance's narration of Copperfield seem all the more awesome. Vance can do voices, and brought them all to wonderful life. All in all, a great listen!
Allow me to admit my bias: David Copperfield is my favorite novel from my favorite author. The intricacies of Dickens's plot requires one to heed even the seemingly banal events of his earlier life. Nothing is irrelevant. His characters typify virtues and vices and are at times among the most amusing in literary history. I identify more with David than any other character in fiction which accounts for my love of his story. The retrospective chapters and "The Tempest" are the most heartfelt and emotionally tumultuous chapters in my reading. Simply, I love this story.
Simon Vance is the voice of Dickens. To my brain, this is quite literally true: Vance has become one with Dickens so that I cannot hear his voice without sensing that it is Dickens speaking. When I read Dickens, I sub-vocalize in the voice of Vance. After reading one of his novels I inevitably add Vance's reading to my audio library so that I can return to it during my bike rides, hikes, long drives, and some leisurely afternoons as a layabout (somehow it's easier to justify sloth if I have Dickens playing in my ears). Vance has an appropriately British accent, neither pretentious nor guttersnipish (I like to imagine that the reader is the author himself). As narrator he is consistent and matter-of-fact, but still interesting. Vance really shines as a character reader. He has very distinct voices for each character which serve to interpret each very accurately. His voice helps immerse me in the story allowing me alternately to love, despise, or laugh at the various characters. In my experience, there is no reader who distinguishes different characters so sharply nor who brings them to life like Vance. I will continue to add Vance readings until I have all of his Dickens recordings. I could never listen to another narrator of a Dickens novel. Master-writer, meet master-reader.
Simon Vance was born to do Dickens. And his performance here is truly extraordinary. He captures the essence of the writer, the characters, the time. I felt very sad when I finished listening to the book. It was like saying goodbye to intimate friends. Congratulations to Mr. Vance for a tour de force performance.
GRI, SME, CDPE, Broker
I ordered this audio book for two reasons. One, I love classics ... and two, a previous reviewer raved about the narrator's outstanding skill (Simon Vance). I agree 200%. Mr. Vance made David Copperfield literally come alive for me, performing each voice with extreme skill and precision - even women and youngsters. And Charles Dickens' reputation needs no further endorsement. The story was so gripping, I felt as if I actually knew the characters and was greatly disappointed when it concluded. I could have read (listened, in this case!) and read and read and read.
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