Two great foreign empires wage a hot and cold war for supremacy and wealth in the troubled region stretching from Persia to India to the mountains of Tibet. Along the way, a Buddhist lama seeks enlightenment and enlists the help of a poor, white soldier’s child. This is not today’s edition of The New York Times, this is Rudyard Kipling’s probable masterpiece, 1901’s Kim.
The legendary Walter Covell performs Kipling’s elegant prose with his natural, swarthy East Coast delivery, and listeners are treated to an epic as palatable to children as it is fascinating to adults. Using "The Great Game" between Russia and the British Empire as its political backdrop, Kim is also a study in love, discipleship, and landscape.
©1982 Jimcin Recordings
Equal parts travelogue, picaresque adventure and spy novel, this is great story tells how a plucky Irish orphan who has grown up in the Bazaars of India decides to accompany a Tibetan lama on a quest for a sacred river. On the way he becomes embroiled in British spy intrigue with Russia. I liked the narrator and thought he did well with different voices for the various characters. But it's the story that makes this a must hear. YOu will be transported to India of the 19th century with all its different cultures and peoples.
The quality of the audio recording of this book is very poor, very difficult to listen to and understand.
If you need to know what is going on at all times in a book, this tale is not for you. On the other hand Kim does paint an evocative picture of a very particular time and place - the Great Game in India-Pakistan in the late 19th century. The character of Kim is enjoyably described as is that of Mahboub Ali (sp?). The reading is ok although I personally did not like the way that the Lama was made to sound. The recording is very uneven and of relatively low quality.
Narrative makes the world go round.
I had always overlooked this classic, thinking of it as a kid's book -- but the novel is great listening - or could be. The sound quality on my download was poor, and I disliked the narrator- he seemed to be sight reading with little interest in many places. I passed up a 4.95 sale version of a less expensive version, mistakening thinking price reflected quality of audiobook, which of course it does not always.
Unless you like this narrator based on another listern, perhaps you shouldn't risk enjoyment of a truly classic tale (and nice prose) by downloading this version.
"Kim - Rudyard Kipling"
I was surprised, on first listening to the recording, to hear an American narrating the story because it would be difficult to get more quintessentially British Empire than Kim. However, it turned out that all the voices, even the plummy 'Sahibs' and especially those belonging to the Indian characters, were excellently done, my favourites being the gravelly-voiced Tibetan Lama and Mahboob Ali, the horse-dealer cum spy. The thing I enjoyed most about the fluent reading is the pronunciation of the Indian words and place-names, I always stumble over these things when reading and it was nice to hear them said correctly and with such relish. An enthralling spy story mixed with Imperialist intrigue (don't be put off by the racist undertones, they're of an era and in the end transcended by the touching relationhip between the Lama and Kim) as well as some beautiful descriptions of India. Highly recommended. I'm giving it four stars, however, not because of the story but because, unfortunately the quality of the recording is in places a little scratchy and echoey.
"a good book spolied by terrible narration"
I have read "Kim" several times and was looking forward to listening to this audio version. What a terrible disappointment. I can truly say this is the WORST narration I have ever heard - and I've listened to nearly 500 audio books - boring, disjointed, no feel for the rhythm or pace of the prose, and utterly laughable characterisation. Avoid this version of "Kim" - there must be a better audio version somewhere - and avoid anything read by Walter Covell like the plague.
Sound quality was nothing to write home about either.
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