Born to an unmarried woman who dies after giving birth, orphan Oliver Twist seems destined to slog through a dismal life in the workhouse. A rebellious cry for more gets Oliver banished, and ultimately lands him on the dismal streets of London. The young outcast finds refuge with Fagin and his band of thieves before fate intervenes and puts Oliver in the hands of a kindly benefactor. It is likely that Dickens's own early youth as a child laborer contributed to the story's development. Oliver Twist has been the subject of countless film and television adaptations.
Public Domain (P)2013 Trout Lake Media
I was hesitant to get this since sometimes the inexpensive are that way for a reason, but was thrilled with this book, and all for $1.95! Character descriptions are so vivid and the narrator was great.
It's hard to believe that one person alone – Peter Batchelor – is doing all the reading! He does a incredible job! This is one great example in which listening to an audiobook can add a whole new dimension to the story. I could never do all those British accents and tones in my head while reading from a book. It feels like going to the theater. And Batchelor adds just the right amount of comedy without overdoing it. I've watched several film adaptations, and yet this one-man-cast's performance has impressed me the most so far! The pace is a bit quick, though, which could be a problem if you're not a native English speaker (as is my case). I managed fine, but had to put a little extra effort at times.
As for Oliver Twist, it's a great classic and much has already been said about it in other reviews. The only thing that bothers me is that the complex villain Fagin is not only Jewish, but is mostly referred to as "the Jew", as it gives the impression that there could be anti-Semitic feelings behind it. Then again, I've read that Dickens wasn't an anti-Semite and that he later created benevolent Jewish characters. I'd be interested in learning more about it. Otherwise, it's a very touching and often funny story.
At the time I purchased the audiobook, it cost only $1.95, which is quite a bargain.
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