One of the most revered works in English literature, Great Expectations traces the coming of age of a young orphan, Pip, from a boy of shallow aspirations into a man of maturity. From the chilling opening confrontation with an escaped convict to the grand but eerily disheveled estate of bitter old Miss Havisham, all is not what it seems in Dickens’ dark tale of false illusions and thwarted desire.
Raised by a humble blacksmith, Pip is recruited by the wealthy Miss Havisham to be a companion to her ward, the cold but beautiful Estella. There, Pip learns to despise his rough origins as Estella torments him about his low prospects. When Pip is informed that an unknown benefactor expects to make him his heir, he sets off to London to realize his “great expectations.” But true gentleman stature, he will find, is a matter of character, not fortune.
Public Domain (P)2011 Blackstone Audio, Inc.
“Observe how finely the narrative is kept in one key. It begins with a mournful impression—the foggy marshes spreading drearily by the seaward Thames—and throughout recurs this effect of cold and damp and dreariness; in that kind Dickens never did anything so good…No story in the first person was ever better told.” (George Gissing, English novelist)
Lover of sci-fi, fantasy, horror, mystery, and westerns in all media, including old-time radio dramatizations.
I sometimes find high-brow victorian literature to be a little to slow and heavy, including Dickens, but 'Expectations' is a clear exception. I loved it. Simon Prebble's performance was captivating.
This was my first time reading Great Expectations and I really liked the story. But I have to say the narrator, Simon Prebble, did such an amazing job with this story and these characters that I'm now going to look up his other audiobooks.
I would definitely recommend giving this one a try.
A part-time buffoon and ersatz scholar specializing in BS, pedantry, schmaltz and cultural coprophagia.
There are many parts of Dickens' writing that I love and few pieces of his that fall short of complete adoration. 'Great Expectations' is one more of Dickens' absolute masterpieces. I love how with 100 pages left you can almost feel the universe shift as Dickens grabs the crazy, once loose strings of his moral narrative and begins to pull it all together.
I think a significant part of the magic, for me, of 'Great Expectations' is found in the minor characters. Everyone from Uncle Pumblechook, Miss Havisham, & Mr Jaggers, to Mr. Wemmick and the Aged Parent (the Aged P.) could be the center of their own Dickens novel; each life is given a warmth (or where there lacks warmth, a round coldness) that keeps the novel propelled on.
You can't have a Dickens novel without a little bit of melodrama and a bit of Victorian moralizing. However, with 'Great Expectations', Dickens does this with a soft touch. He isn't as confrontational about social ills as he is in 'Hard Times' or 'Oliver Twist' and he isn't as melodramatic as he was in 'Tale of Two Cities', but even so, I completely enjoyed this gentle, more muted Dickens.
Simon is a genius. He made each character come alive. Very well done!
A memorable moment was when Pip discovered who Estella's birth mother and father were.
All the different tones of the characters. Wonderful drama!
You know them, or DO YOU?
I'll give everything a try
First up, this is a must read. If you are debating if you should read this, you don't need to debate longer. This is a brilliant one.
Dickens is one of the best story tellers I've ever read. The characterization is fantastic, especially because it captures human nature so well. What happens when you sudden turn from a kid with nothing much to a gentleman? Well, I won't spoil the story for you. The first person narrative is especially effective for this one, because we constantly get what PPip is thinking and as he is misled as to the situation around him and the changing character of himself, so are we the reader. I loved the technique to. You get a character who you think is gone for ever and then what does Dickens do? He brings him back suddenly, and it turns out he is crucial to the story. Anyway, I will stop talking now, but seriously, this is a must read. Maybe you can learn something about yourself in the process too... like me. So sit back and enjoy it!
Enthralling, intelligent, riveting, engaging, while still quaint and amusing, and sill amazingly relevant. This is thought to be Dickens' most readable book and with Simon Prebble performing it certainly is. I recently heard an English actress claim that Dickens' must be read aloud and she used Great Expectations as an example. Having listened to this I would have to agree with her and Prebble's performance is impeccable. I thoroughly enjoyed this book.
I enjoyed listening to this story. The narrator was good and of course Dickens tells stories well. I felt like I was back in time.
I'm a web developer based out of Sacramento, I listen to books while I work, and love audible.
I went into this book with, well, great expectations, after recently reading a Tale of Two cities, an awesome book by the way. And I must say this did not live up to what I was expecting, part of it was that I'm just not that interested in people who coming into a great expectation. The characters where very interesting though, it was just the subject of story that could not hold my attention.
Tell us about yourself! Lifelong reader and passionate pursuer of knowledge. I love Audible because I never have to stop reading.
Dickens best, about unrequited love, deep friendship, and the importance of integrity. Irony abounds, as it always does. Enjoy.
I was pleasantly surprised by the excellent quality of the narration! Readers tone and voice were a listening pleasure. I am familiar with Dickens since childhood. (A good many years ago.). Being able to read on my kindle and then take up with the audio on my bus and rail trips was a delight.
Pip naturally! Following his life in the English setting of the 19 century and again discovering the ageless quality of his character in today's era.
Oh no! It is too long. But Dickens originally wrote it as a serial. It was very easy to take up after a break and again become enthralled with the characters, language and events.
Thank you for whispersync. I hope more books will soon be available in this manner.
"Difficult to stop listening to it"
Cannot remember if I've read the book, but the narrator enhanced the enjoyment.
Joe, because he was a really nice, dependable chap.
More than one. Caused tears when finished listening to the whole book.
Narrator got into the soul of each character.
"A tragic and lovely story about growing up"
How supportive the blacksmith was to Pip, he did everything and a little more just like any great father would.
I dont think that would work since you would need 4-5 different actors to play some of the characters.
A great story about a boy growing up, realizing that if you are given everything the drive to improve is easily lost. About love, heartbreak and friendship
Overall a great book and a great story
"really enjoyable classic"
entertaining, brilliantly narrated
I've never read this book, as I thought it would be long and boring, but I thoroughly enjoyed this audiobook and found it funny, brilliantly observed and expertly narrated. Would highly recommend
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