With its blend of Eastern mysticism and Western culture, Steppenwolf, Hesse' best-known and most autobiographical work, originally published in English in 1929, continues to speak to our souls as a classic of modern literature.
©1927 S. Fischer Verlag A. G., Berlin. Renewal copyright ©1955 Hermann Hesse. English translation copyright B© 1929 Henry Holt and Company. Renewal copyright ©1957 Hermann Hesse. Revised translation copyright © 1963 Holt, Rinehart, and Winston, Inc. Author's note copyright ©1961 Suhrkamp Verlag, Frankfurt Am Main; (P)2008 BBC Audiobooks America
No, but Peter Weller did an amazing job bringing Haller to life.
Hesse captures what it means to live, and if read (or listened to) properly, offers a hopeful warning for the young, while also presenting a means of communal acceptance for those who have lived much of their years already.
Not the magic theater--it was too "beat you over the head with moralizing symbolism"--although, I would never suggest it isn't a necessary component of the piece. I liked the bar scene where Haller went to avoid his apartment in an attempt to forestall his suicide.
A film could never do the book justice.
After reading Hesse's Siddhartha, I expected a good deal of musings on life. However, where Siddhartha presents ideas in a simplistic archetypal fashion, Steppenwolf has nuance and depth. Excellent, raw emotional exposure.
Steppenwolf is, indeed, taught too early in school; a slightly more mature perspective enhanced this reader's enjoyment of the tale.
The cinical perspective at the heart of this story is dry to the marrow ironic perfection.
Peter Weller possesses the perfect voice for the re/telling of this story. His performance is suberb.
If you aren't laughing, you should stop listening.
This classic is an absolute must read/listen, even if you have read it in school - especially if you have read it in school; it is far more enjoyable from an adult perspective.
I've answered this now-cliche question to my satisfaction in a couple ways, but nothing beats a great example, and this is one of them. I can see where it's not for everyone at every time, but I was so glad I stuck it out (the beginning was a little slow in parts). And I don't believe it could have been read any more perfectly. Please put me on the list of people who want to be notified when any audiobooks with Peter Weller as Narrator are released. Thank you!
Weller's delivery of this potent work is spot on in every way. This novel is a favorite of mine, but I will be looking into other audio books Weller narrates on the strength of this performance.
This is one of those books that need not really have a plot. The writing is so superb, so rich, even in translation, that the concept of a storyline is almost superfluous. That said one has to admit that the story is less than riveting, however the intellectual richness of the writing requires little else to support it. This is one of the classics, brilliantly narrated and a true masterpiece. I won't spoil it for you by giving a summary of the content, just read it and lose yourself in the (now sadly uncommon) luxury of superb writing.
...not to say that the spell mightn't push its luck once or twice (like the infrequent flirtations with silliness don't provide much needed relief). As it is with Finnegan's Wake, this would be a good one to save up for a while, seeing as how it leaves a lot of other very worthwhile novels reading like so much fan fiction. Also as it is with Finnegan's Wake, you're more or less guaranteed at least one moment where some long-forgotten-dream memory will burst its banks.
There were a few moments of good narration, but as a whole, this beautifully-written character-rich book was represented flatly and lifelessly. I understand that the main character is in the deep despair of an existential crisis -- I am there myself -- but that doesn't equate to malaise, nor does it justify very nearly interpreting all other characters in precisely the same way. There are several occurrences of awkwardness, as well as oddly too-slow or (more rarely) too-quick readings.
I am certainly not a fan of this narrative performance, and I have little qualm in stopping an otherwise good book for this very reason. But I persisted in this case for two reasons: 1) the text is just that good and I have the imagination to re-interpret the narrative on-the-fly; and, 2) the narrator, though uninterested or incapable of putting humanity and pathos into his narration of this work, does succeed in providing just enough for my attention-span to grip (almost paradoxically). Perhaps again it is the superb writing of Hesse and the book's resonance with a similar struggle in my own life, but I refer you to a few other reviewers who were more than pleased with this narration.
This book is very much a work of philosophy. Many of the sentences are meandering philosphical statements that most accessible when read more than once. The performance is monotone (which I suppose is fitting for the story) and tends to be boring. Buy this as a real book to truly access this classic.
Ok, yes, I confess. I'm another paranormal geek.
The story "Steppenwolf" is interesting to me but I could not get deep into the story because of the narrator's extremely monotone and utterly boring voice. Not one I'll be recommending. If you can handle monotone, give it a try. But if you prefer the narrator's to give in to a little drama and help bring the story to life, I suggest you try something else.
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