I have read this book several times and have seen the miniseries twice. I found that oftentimes the subtle wit and sarcasm of the story was not relayed in the narrator's speech, especially in regard to the characters of Mary and Henry Crawford. For an untrained listener the missing inflections in the narrator's voice change the tone and direction of the story.
As a diehard fan of the book and it's author, Jane Austen, the subtleties of the story is where the pay off is in reading her. To have these ironed out, so to speak, reduced my enjoyment considerably.
This was the only Jane Austen I had not read because a friend told me some years ago how boring it was. She could not have been more wrong! I thought it was excellent and the speakers voice was very good also. I thought she did the male characters just as well as the female characters. I also thought she really made you feel the emotions that every character was feeling when they were speaking and/or thinking. All in all an excellent choice.
I'm glad I bought this and I've enjoyed listening to it. However, the quality of the audio is medium. Also, although this performer has a much better voice, in my opinion, than Flo Gibson's (who sounds to me like she's been smoking unfiltered cigarettes for 50 years), she is not as good as Greta Sacchi's performance of Persuasion.
Audible has changed my life! Dry , itchy eyes were destroying one of my greatest pleasures - reading. Now I am experiencing books again!
"Mansfield Park" is hard to read. It's longer than a lot of Austen, the heroine Fanny Price is a very un-modern woman, and her meekness can be difficult to swallow. So, how wonderful to discover a narrator who makes the book so easy to listen to!
There are great characters in "Mansfield Park," but it has never been my favorite Austen (and I am a huge fan). If you've never read a Jane Austen book, don't start with this one. But, if you like Jane and have had trouble getting through "MP," this is your version!
The narrator does a creditable job differentiating the various characters and bringing them to life for the listener. The pace of this novel is sometimes a bit slow - I knew where the story was going and wanted to yell at the characters to get a move on! There were moments when I thought I would give up listening... but I couldn't. Jane Austen really is a master of characterization; I cared about the characters and wanted the good guys to gain happiness and the bad guys to get what's coming to them. This is my least favorite of Jane Austen's novels... but still well worth reading!
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