Probably the most shocking of the Brontës' novels, this novel had an instant and phenomenal success and is widely considered to be one of the first sustained feminist novels. A mysterious widow, Mrs. Helen Graham, arrives at Wildfell Hall, a nearby old mansion. A source of curiosity for the small community, the reticent Helen and her young son Arthur are slowly drawn into the social circles of the village.
Public Domain (P)2012 Trout Lake Media
I really enjoyed this book, and the way that it was read. Mary Sarah brought much depth to the reading and her voice was so easy to listen to, I just couldn't "put it down." I will definitely be listening to more of her work!
I need more ears!
Ms. Aliotta reads as if she needs to use the facilities and cannot go until she finishes the book. Listening to her rapid fire delivery actually sped up my heart rate. Not worth the $2.00 it costs or the space it takes up on your ipod.
Stick with it while the author delicately and elaborately lays the groundwork and backdrop for this marvelous and intimate experience in the lives of these characters. The development pays off and the story gains momentum. Beautiful story.
I love gothic romances, and being disabled, I depend on audible for my reading pleasure. This specimen however was extremely disappointing. The narrator determined that to add drama all she had to do was talk faster or louder. She mispronounced so many words it was distracting. Her reading was clipped and without any true passion. I would advise this director in the future to go over pronunciation of words( some as simple as pronouncing draught-the Brittish spelling of draft-as drought. The meaning being the exact opposite of the author's intent) prior to recording the book.
It seems that I have established a pattern with Bronte... As when I have last read the novels by the other sisters, the reading if this took me three times longer than it aught to have. It was slow to get into, and remained that way for much of the first half - and even when I did finally become more interested, I was never so gripped that I couldn't put it down nor was I tempted to do nothing but read hour hours at a stretch as is typical of me.
The goings on were dismal 90% of the time, and there were few characters to like. I wasn't even particularly fond of the narrator, and I can hardly forget his violent outburst at one point. And though he repents of it, he is prone to passions, and there was something in him that I did not like overmuch. And I felt only pity for Helen much if the time. What an awful lot, and merciless cruel people bedeviled her life.
It was difficult to bear, and witnesses will attest to my indignation and horror and anger at the ingrates! I was moved to tears even, at one juncture of vile mistreatment towards her. But alas, I held little hope that this Bronte novel would leave off on any happier a note than others like it, but alas, it was a dash more cheery. Those whom we have known to be blagards and villains have met deserving fates, those of repentant or constantly good natures are seen to pass brighter futures and proportionate happiness. Thank goodness, all was set right for Helen, after she endured so much.
The performance was unremarkable. Much of the time the narrative and dialogue were indistinguishable, nor were the voices of most characters throughout, which lead to no little confusion during multi-person exchanges several times.
I would wholeheartedly recommend the book, as it is one of my favourites. However, I would recommend reading it, or finding a different audio version.
Jane Eyre, Northanger Abbey - the style and stories have similar elements.
Davina Porter or have Juliet Stevenson do the unabridged version. Mary Sarah Agliotta kept mispronouncing words and does not have an English accent.
It has been made into a very nice TV mini series.
Overall enjoyed the story, definitely worth listening. Part of my decision to "listen" to the classics and glad to include in my collection and recommend.
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