Far from the Madding Crowd was the first of Hardy's novels to give the name Wessex to the landscape of southwest England and the first to gain him widespread popularity as a novelist. Set against the backdrop of the unchanging natural cycle of the year, the story both upholds and questions rural values with a startlingly modern sensibility.
~~~"HOPEFUL ROMANTIC"~~~ *** Love Audio Books....Especially Historical Romances *** ~~ "Reviews Should Never Contain spoilers ~~
This book truly stands the test of time. If you've read it before as I have I think you will enjoy listening to the story this time. Its such a wonderful story that should be revisited now and then. The narration is suburb. This is definitely one that I will listen to again in the future.
This is a timeless tale of love, love lost, love sperned, devotion, faithfulness, and community. 1800's or today, the core of this story still rings true. It is narrated by John Lee so in other words expertly.
A beautifully written book and read perfectly by
John Lee. Of the many, many books I have listened to, this is up at the top (along with The Forsyth Saga).
"a question of taste (isn't it always?)"
Thomas Hardy stands apart among 19th century classic novel writers. The setting, the overall atmosphere and the writing style feel more modern than what you'd expect. That said, this might be a little dour for some, but it's a good story.
With this recording, I find the narrator fails to sufficiently differentiate the voices of the characters and I find him generally too monotone in his reading, though some of his rural England accents are good.
Many people carry Thomas Hardy?s works around like an old friend ? and when times are tough and the world looks a difficult place, the perfect relaxation is to travel back to Wessex and rediscover what real woes and worries are all about. Sheep that take ill, unrequited love, the self willed female in a traditionalist world, position and power in opposition to life and vitality. It is all here ? and the reader can quicky immerse themselves in a world that always stays the same but seems to adapt to speak to us in words that echo our contemporary concerns. Take time out, travel backwards, relax and enjoy ? Hardy?s is a rich endowment in a contemporary world of diminishing returns.
"I love this book"
I am very familiar with this book and found it the relaxing listen that I was looking for.
However, I wish the narrator hadn't given the impression that he was galloping through it.
And, although he didn't labour acting the voices, Gabriel's in particular having an excellent nuance, he simply couldn't capture Bathsheba (even though other female characters appeared to be unproblematic). But Bathsheba was presented with an insipid air, which certainly doesn't match her character.
Altogether, these niggles aside, it was a pleasant listen.
"A must for Thomas Hardy followers!!"
John Lee, as ever, delivers a wondrous narration in which one loses oneself in time and becomes one of the participants in the story. I listen to this for hours transfixed by the coming-to-life of all the characters. Well done!!!
"excellently read !"
An excellently read glimpse into rural life in the mid 19th century.
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