Noted geologist Professor Liedenbrock discovers a cryptic message hidden in the pages of an ancient volume purporting to show the way into the center of the earth. Liedenbrock determines to make this fantastic journey, insisting his 16-year-old nephew, Henry, accompany him. Tim Curry handles the verbal pyrotechnics of Verne’s classic adventure, capturing the sardonic wit and droll observations of 16-year-old Henry. Writing in 1864, when explorers such as Burton, Stanley, and Livingstone were charting the earth’s geography, Verne created the fantastical geography of the world below based on current scientific fact. With breathtaking surety, Curry’s performance takes listeners from Germany to Iceland to the bowels of the earth and back, providing humor and clarity.
Journey to the Center of the Earth is one of literature’s earliest works of science fiction. It vividly animates a fantastical subterranean world as an intrepid crew, led by the eccentric Otto Lidenbrock, traverses the planet’s core and its various bizarre obstacles: giant mushrooms and insects, a herd of mastodons, prehistoric humans, a treacherous pit of magma, and more.
Tim Curry, narrator of the customer favorite A Christmas Carol, returns for an encore performance that delivers a range of distinct character voices and captures the energy and enthusiasm of a time when scientific exploration was a brand new adventure.
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This is one of those classics so embedded in culture that you know the story without ever reading it. These classics stand out from other works just as the few tbousand visible stars stand out from the billion others we don't see. Each star has held its place for ao long that we don't notice the individual unless we deliberately look - but together they form a familiar backdrop by which we can navigate and enjoy this world.
But after finishing this I ask myself whether some classics should fade from the sky. I felt that Jules Verne gave us a narration of spectacle only; the sibterranean world is explored but the human soul is not. It's interesting to imagine you're hearing tbe story as a contemporary, when people weren't so numb to spectacle and the story would have been gripping as it is. But I feel that classics should have some kind of greatness about them, and that grestness should probably be more than just situation... it should teach us something about ourselves.
On that score I'd allow JTTCOTE to be crowded out of yhe sky.
But one thing is worth repeating: Tim Curry's performance is superb.
Never read the book or saw the movie, but really enjoyed the Audible version. I decided to watch the movie, and it was so not-the-book, I stopped after about 15 grinding minutes. Tim Curry is an AWESOME narrator! I would definitely recommend this, especially if you like science fiction.
The Story is addicting and will keep you listening to the end. I was excited when I first got the book to see that it was narrated by Tim Curry - he is so talented and narrates this book perfectly. Loved every minute.
If you like science expeditions, goofy old professors or adventure/discovery tales, this is totally up your alley. If not then I'd suggest you give it a shot anyway cause you might change your mind.
Yes, this was time well spent for me, because this is a classic that I had never read as a child. It gave me some cultural/historical perspective on the state of science in Verne's time, and an appreciation of how far science has come. For my son (8) it was entertaining, captured his imagination, and made him laugh a few times. And I think he liked feeling a little bit "superior" in his understanding of modern science. It also spurred some good discussions for us.
Perhaps, but I found some of the more technical sciency sections quite tedious--not because I don't understand the terms (I'm a biologist)--but mainly because the long lists of scientific names do nothing to advance the story, and rather seem like a device to make the reader feel like a naive outsider. So the tone comes off as pompous, which is funny since it is not even real science, just science fiction. Incidentally, Curry's reading of these litanies of jargon had an unmistakable irony that, for me, highlighted Verne's naivite and the absurdity of the whole premise.
Tim Curry's reading is absolutely masterful. I didn't love this book, but I loved his reading. He brought out the hints of irony, humor, and absurdity that would have been lost on me if I had been reading it myself. This is not a humorous book generally, but we did burst out laughing at a few of those great Tim Curry moments. I especially loved the absurdity of the professor's optimism and determination in the face of utterly impossible situations.
This is the only way to get through all the books I want to enjoy...and still I'm behind!
Sure! It's a classic and with Tim Curry's incredible voice, it's a winner. Mind you the story is slow to start and as we have so much technology and many more books to read it's not hard to figure out some of the twists and turns and hidden treasures that so excited people who read the book in its day. I picture young boys at the time thoroughly pouring over this as an adventure story to transport them into another world and not so science-y that it's difficult to understand. I thought of this book for a long trip and it was our first audiobook on said trip. While some of the beginning descriptions were long, some of them reminded me of the landscape we were traveling--southern Minnesota- along the Iowa border. Although some of the narration got long, we stuck with it...I wanted to know how it all ended!
Typical old school classic, but falls faintly into many sciences, and not way out typical of nowadays distopyia or outerspace science fiction. A good adventure story from way back when.
I didn't give this rave reviews because for me it didn't always hold my interest, but it brought back memories for my husband who read it in book form. He almost gave up on it but it carried through in the end and he thoroughly enjoyed it again.
The audio books I get tend to be either 1) scifi or 2) things for my husband and me to listen to on long road trips--humor or history
I first read this book when I was a very young girl, and it is amazing how much of it I recalled upon re-reading it 40 years later. Certainly, the details have faded from my memory, but as I listened to the audiobook (given a glorious reading by Tim Curry) I felt myself transported to my early childhood. I felt again the fascination for geology, paleontology and archeology this book and other similar ones engendered in me. For the book is a veritable encyclopedia of vocabulary and theories from these disciplines. No matter that many of the concepts are outdated, any young person with an interest in the sciences would find the tale of the “savant” Professor Lidenbrock, his fearful nephew Axel and their intrepid guide Hans fascinating. I recall looking up many of the words in a dictionary as I read, and am certain that this book played a key role in my lifelong interest in science and science fiction.
Loved the journey, nothing like any of the movies that have been made over the years. It's surprising how the movie makers take liberty w/ the authors creations. The performance by Tim Curry was wonderful. Great Story.
I bought this because of my high opinion of Tim Curry -- have even seen him live -- but I found myself dulled-to-sleep by Verne's story and more than a little irritated by Curry's voice work (especially for the uncle).
In theory this is a great story, but in print it suffers from its time period. More than half of the book is grindingly dry exposition about the whiney nephew (how could I have forgotten how badly he needed to be slapped?) and references to theories and scientists of the time, almost none of whom are even known today they were of so little consequence. Curry does his best, but he has little to work with.
If you must listen to this novel skip the high price of this version "extreme rapidity" and bore yourself to death with a cheaper copy.
This is a book best remembered for the very little that stands out as interesting, but never bothered with again. A post-card-length synopsis of the highpoints would suffice and could probably be remade into a decent movie as long as Brendan Frasier is not miscast into it again, unless he is there to slap the nephew.
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