In this, perhaps Dickens' most profound and personal novel, we are invited to share in the sentimental education of Pip, the poor boy from the village forge who risks losing himself in snobbery and selfishness when he mysteriously inherits a fortune. The story moves from the bleak Kentish marshes of Pip's childhood to a thrilling climax that mingles tragedy and triumph.
Public Domain © and (P)1996 Naxos AudioBooks Ltd.
"We take great joy in recording our conviction that Great Expectations is a masterpiece." (The Atlantic Monthly)
Addicted to books, both print and audio-.
I started and abandoned another audiobook of Great Expectations a while back. While I found the narration excellent, the beginning of the book, with Pip's terrorizing by the convict and then the abuse by his sister, was just too bleak and intense, and I gave it up. However, I am running out of Dickens, and decided to try Anton Lesser's recording. I am familiar with his acting work on Wolf Hall and Endeavour but had never listened to his narration. It is exquisite. His portrayal of Pip is straightforward, gentle, almost minimalist, very moving, and his voicing of the other characters is varied and marvelous. It was utterly engrossing.
Great Expectations does not contain the comic relief that Dickens used in so many novels. There is so much horror and sadness: Mrs. Joe, the convicts, Orlick, Miss Havisham, but there is also love and tenderness: Joe Gargery, Wemmick and his Aged Parent, Biddy. It's a rich and beautifully-written story, and well worth your time.
I love to read mysteries, histories, biographies, humor, and Jane Austen.
I just love Anton Lesser as a narrator. He is an amazing reader, with an incredible knack for creating rich characters with just his voice.
On the other hand, I've never cared for Dickens, and his popularity has always been puzzling. This seemed like a good opportunity to see if Mr. Lesser could open the door of Dicken's magic.
As always, Mr. Lesser made magic with his voice. These characters will remain with me as rich individuals. But I still don't understand Dickens' popularity, because the story was not engaging in the least - at least, not for me. Instead, I was simply annoyed by the passive and discontented Pip, who is never happy no matter what life gives him.
Anton Lesser is a master of voices and characters.
Pip's life lessons parallel many of our own youthful misguidance that only straightens itself out as he actually lives life.
Dickens has always provided characters that are memorable; the narration here has managed to truly bring them to life.
I can't choose a favorite character in this performance--Mr. Lesser caught them all so very well indeed.
I was moved as Pip realized just how much his mysterious benefactor had suffered unduly, and as we watch him fully change his attitudes and turn around his expectations both of other and of himself.
A rendition I most firmly recommend by a superb narrator.
There's nothing much that Anton Lesser can't do -- from Hamlet to Homer, his performances are always superlative. So he's the ideal narrator for Dickens' best novel, the wide range of vivid characters drawing out all the actor's virtuosity. Three minutes in, the convict appears out of nowhere, the listener is gripped by the neck, and this eerie and enthralling story begins to unfold in lifelike colour.
Yes... the narration is that good.
His talent for various voices and accents makes the story come alive.
One of the top.
Miss Havisham because of her surrealistic quality.
Anton Lesser is brilliant as all the charactres and has an amazing grasp on Dickens' dialog and the subtleties of its humor. But I especially liked his portrayal of Wemmick.
Pip leaving Joe was the most moving, but also his climactic confrontation of Estella.
This narrator was awesome. He really knows how to bring the story and characters alive.
Pip and so many of the other characters. They all brought out the frailties and foibles, nobility and character of all of us.
I have not but plan on listening to others.
This is an excellent story which causes reflection of self and others through all spectrums of emotion.
I read Great Expectations a few years ago. I was underwhelmed. I love Dickens, and I know this is one of his most highly rated works. But I found the characters a bit too stock, and the plot dragged in the middle of the book. Listening to it, I enjoyed it more and understood better the sort of themes it explores. For all, that I still think it short of Dockens' best; but it's very good, and Anton Leiser, as always, narrates it brilliantly. If there is an award for reading aloud, he should win it.
"Dickens brought to life."
The last time I encountered Dickens was at school (some 40 odd years ago) when our English teacher read Oliver Twist to us and made it come alive. In order to relive this experience I downloaded Great Expectations and was not disappointed. Anton Lesser is an inspired choice as narrator...along with Dickens descriptive talent he made this a magical experience and I want to move on to more of the same.
"Best Reading Ever"
Definitely in my top five.
The beginning where Magwitch leaps out at Pip - he yells.
For anyone who wants to start on Dickens, I recommend you choose this book. It's a sudden beginning and you've just got to read until you reach the end. You feel for Pip right the way through, especially in his love for Estella.
"Dickens and Lesser are a Perfect Combination"
Equal top with other Dickens/Lesser collaborations and some Virginia Woolf / Juliet Stevenson works.
Wemmick, or rather the home and story of Wemmick and the Aged P, is a wonderfully endearing construct.
"Great Expectations Fulfilled"
Anton Lesser is brilliant at creating the characters Dickens portrays in this wonderful story – he never falters in bring the imagination to life, making me laugh out loud or shed a tear whilst listening to him on the bus - I will listen to this story over and over again. My great expectation was fulfilled. Thank you Mr Lesser.
really enjoyed this although struggled with some of the oldie worldie dislogue. great narration - excellent characterisation and accents
Anton Lesser... one of the best readings to my mind by an actor who knows Dickens very well indeed. 10/10
"Interesting at times, but a bit long and old."
I've been trying to get into the old classics, and although I can enjoy some of the differences from modern writing, I do find it difficult to enjoy. I think it is the pace which gets me. This and other old classics are so slow! They meander around the points and the characters and I just want them to move on! The main storyline, however, is sound and good.
good a bit long winded, but that"s just the time, a incredible story just look past the language, 9 and a half.
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