(P)2008 Alpha DVD LLC
I understand that this book was originally written in Spanish. The reason for translating it into English is so we English speakers can understand and enjoy this great story.
The narrator's thick Spanish accent and poor pronunciation of English words makes it very difficult to understand what he is saying all of the time.
I find myself having to rewind a great deal to catch words and phrases. (And this is a long book.)
When I listen to narrations of Tolstoy and Dostoevsky I listen to a pleasant, understandable English accent. The audio publishers felt no need to hire a narrator with a thick Russian accent and poor English pronunciation skills.
I just listened to "The White Tiger". An excellent book. Takes place in India. The Narrator, Mr Lee, narrates with an excellent Indian accent to give us a sense that we are listening to an Indian story. He does so with totally understandable English pronunciation.
There is no crime to speak with an accent, if you have excellent English pronunciation skills. This narrator does not.
I purchased this hastily, which makes me partly responsible, but I find it hard to believe that this reader was approved. There are non-native speakers who speak wonderfully and whose accents add charm to the reading, but unfortunately this is not one of them. Julian Reinoso is fairly comprehensible, but there are too many moments when his pronunciation proves to be a barrier between the listener and the story itself. His intonations are robotic and he places accents at strange points in many words. The result is that you often have to stuggle or rewind just to make sense of what he is saying. There is no natural flow of the language whatsoever.
It goes without saying that clarity of pronunciation and natural flow should be top priorities for an audiobook. I am still puzzled as to how this reading of 30 + hours was approved when the reader is so difficult to understand. I do not recommend this audiobook.
I am going to try the Robert Whitfield reading, which from the sample sounds much clearer and enjoyable than this unfortunate version.
The previous review nailed it. A classic when read, a nightmare to listen to, if Audible had a money back guarantee this would be one that would be going back. Save your credits.
This version was pretty bad. I intend on reviewing the ratings of other listeners in the future. I could have saved myself some time and annoyance.
Ok, as every other commenter has noted, the narrator has a heavy (Spanish? Portuguese?) accent. The universal opinion seems to be that this is a liability, and renders the listening experience less than ideal. I disagree. Don Quixote is a comic novel, and in my opinion the accent of the narrator only adds to the comedy. At the outset the accent was a bit difficult to parse, true, but truthfully, in only a very short time my ears had no trouble at all sorting out what was being said. The human mind's ability to interface with the world is amazing like that- flexible and adaptable. And you know what else is amazing? The fact that you can listen to like 2 or 3 whole minutes of the book being read before buying it! Its a special thing audible has invented. I think they call it a "sample". I mean seriously, who does that? Who buys an audio book without first checking the sample to make sure the narration is to their taste? LOL.
So in short, buy it, revel in the thick, spicy Latin-ness of the narration, and laugh out loud at all the funny bits.
Compares favorably to "the most interesting man in the world"...
Haha. 34 hours long.
I was very disappointed. The reader speaks English, but it is apparently a second language and very hard for me to understand. This book is not eligible for return, something I have never attempted before. So I guess I will study Spanish, then give it another try.
My English is not perfect either, but I don't record books for Audible.
A different narrator.
I was disappointed because I couldn't bear to listen to the story, which, itself, is a fun story. Julian Reinoso could not pronounce basic English words. I didn't listen to a sample before ordering this book, which is my own fault.
I'm normally good at understanding non-native English speakers but the narration here is so thickly accented that the book becomes a trial of comprehension rather than the pleasure that the wonderful writing merits.
My fault for not listening to the sample first but I am disappointed Audible allowed this to pass.
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