Explicit descriptions of sex and "unprintable" words meant that D. H. Lawrence’s notorious novel could only be printed in Florence when it was published in 1928. Almost entitled Tenderness by the author, it tells the story of the physical relationship between the aristocratic protagonist Constance Chatterley and gamekeeper Oliver Mellors - which occurs right under the nose of her wheelchair-bound husband, Clifford.
In exploring the class system of the early 20th century, the novel also touches upon the declining coal-mining industry, its effect on the workers, and the politics which surrounded it. Yet possibly the most important theme in this intimate and moving novel is the individual’s need for physical as well as intellectual satisfaction in order to feel a sense of completeness.
Public Domain (P)2011 Naxos AudioBooks
I'll start with the bottom line: This is a very good (but not perfect) rendering of an excellent novel.
The narration was OK. There aren't really any flaws in it, but I didn't think it was a great performance. It's probably a matter of taste, but I found the male characters could have been performed better.
As for the novel: I though it was wonderful. There are, of course, the famous "sexual" parts which, surprisingly, are not as tame-sounding as you might expect after 80 years. But that's not really the point of the book. What really impressed me was the quality of the writing, and I'll try to explain what it was that I found so striking. Usually in a novel, when you have several main characters and one of these is undergoing some sort of change, you get the feeling that the other characters are more or less stationary, merely going on with their lives or reacting to the character that's currently in focus. But in this novel, or at least in parts of it, Lawrence has four main characters developing simultaneously in different directions. I thought this was very well done.
So: A very good book. Perhaps not the world-changing book it used to be, but definitely worthwhile.
I live in Tucson. I always planned to reread the classics of my youth when I grew old. It's a wonderful thing to do because the books haven't changed but the reader has. I love Lawrence.
This is the third of the three versions of Lady C.. written by Lawrence and it is my least favorite. It was written at the end of his life while he was dying of tuberculosis and sometimes it does seem feverish. It as if he took all of his concerns and put them into the mouth of Mellors who becomes his self-righteous mouthpiece. They seem as dated now as does the plight of coal minors in the English Midlands. The other versions are more universal.
That said, you can't go wrong with Lawrence. It is best to read all or most of Lawrence to appreciate the spirit of his message. I first read Lady C. 50 years ago and I knew then, in my early 20's, that it was an important and beautiful work and now, in my 70's, iI know better why that is so. It may take a lifetime to see the obvious.
Although it contains some beautiful language this is a consistently dark grey depressing story about very unhappy people. There are no characters to be admired.
None- thats the problem with the book.
Shame on all the English teachers who hold this up as one of the best novels ever written.
"lady chatterley's lover"
very steamy! very hard going to start with but once I got in to it it was really good
"Boring tripe, terrible performance."
Maxine Peake's affectation and reading is awful. Sometimes it sounds like a robot, and sometimes it sounds like she's about to fall asleep, as so is the listener.
Instead of reading D.H. Lawrence's books, the various BBC adaptations are much more entertaining, sometimes even richer, and certainly less boring than the originals.
Sorry, but Maxine Peake is a terrible audiobook performer, and her accents... let's not talk about those.
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