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Vanity Fair [AudioGo] Audiobook

Vanity Fair [AudioGo]

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Publisher's Summary

Set during the time of the Napoleonic Wars, this classic gives a satirical picture of a worldly society. The novel revolves around the exploits of the impoverished but beautiful and devious Becky Sharp.

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What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (399 )
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4.6 (311 )
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Performance
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  •  
    john vineyard ithaca, ny USA 10-29-12
    john vineyard ithaca, ny USA 10-29-12 Member Since 2016
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    "Terrific perfomance of a timeless classic"
    Would you listen to Vanity Fair again? Why?

    Yes, becuase the quality of Castle's performance is so good.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Vanity Fair?

    Far too many to select one. He's very good at building a long story arc that culminates with some type of reconciliation between people who have long been apart or estranged.


    Have you listened to any of John Castle’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    No


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    10 X better than Downton Abbey


    Any additional comments?

    Of the many audio novels I have listened to, Castle's performance here is one of the most rewarding of all. Thackeray's narrative skill, characterizations, and plotting are at the very highest level. One of the very best.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mavep Albury, Australia 10-05-12
    Mavep Albury, Australia 10-05-12

    Love reading, and now listening to books being read. I like poetry and classic literature and also detective fiction and some thrillers.

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    "A book to listen to, and listen again."

    This well known classic is captivating. A story of a world of social climbing and search for wealth, set amidst the background of the Napoleonic wars. The Narration is excellent, like listening to a play.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    marguerite allred-crawford Clarksville, TN, US 04-20-17
    marguerite allred-crawford Clarksville, TN, US 04-20-17
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    "never goes out of style"

    Though it takes awhile and Thackeray loves to digress his keen insight into human nature shown here is never stale. When all is said at last and "the puppets are put back in the box" I always wish there was more.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jon 02-16-17
    Jon 02-16-17
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    "Vanity Fair"

    It's such a complex story fluctuating between the satire of Hogarth and the romance of Dickens that the narrator shifts tone and character to create the play acting world of Vanity Fair that's precisely what Thackeray meant. So it's a prolonged joy ride into the post Napoleonic world depicted with a subtle savagery, which always catches you unawares.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jean B 02-11-17
    Jean B 02-11-17 Member Since 2014
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    "Wonderful"

    John Castle's narration was perfect and this book really lends itself to being read aloud. I just loved it !

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    J. Denenholz Pasadena, CA 01-26-17
    J. Denenholz Pasadena, CA 01-26-17 Member Since 2016
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    "A world to get lost in!"
    If you could sum up Vanity Fair [AudioGo] in three words, what would they be?

    Hilarious, intriguing, charming


    Have you listened to any of John Castle’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    No, but would love to try another one....


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    The description of the panic surrounding the Battle of Waterloo


    Any additional comments?

    It's long, very long, but so well worth the time. I was sorry for it to end.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Deirdre Barber USA 01-15-17
    Deirdre Barber USA 01-15-17

    teacher

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    "John Castle is brilliant!"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes - great writing - interesting tie-ins to history - a clear look into the class system of the time - and a great narrator.


    What about John Castle’s performance did you like?

    I loved reading this book when I was young, but this narrator has such a fine-tuned ear to the vernacular, custom, and characters of the time, that it expanded and multiplied the experience for me. He never flagged; the characters were spot-on, his varying accents completely believable, and his pacing was perfect.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ann Richardson 11-21-16
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    "VANITY FAIR by Thackeray"

    Brilliant book brilliantly read. There is a good reason why Charlotte Bronte thought so highly of this author. John Castle's reading captures perfectly Thackeray's wit and irony and fascinating characters~~and he doesn't force the difference between male and female voices, rather he does it by subtle means. His accents are great! Superlative in all respects~~and a "heroine" to match Scarlett O'Hara.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Surly Girly 05-30-16
    Surly Girly 05-30-16

    Say something about yourself!

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    "A Match Made in Heaven"

    If ever there was a narrator to read this timeless satire on social mores, it is John Castle. It's as though he were channeling Thackeray. His pace, inflection, interpretation of the author's written word, revealed more nuanced gems - more dry humor - in this classic than I've heretofore noticed when reading it on my own.

    Listening is a treat to be savored - the best I've yet experienced.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Barbara 05-19-16
    Barbara 05-19-16
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    "John Castle's narration is wonderful"

    John Castle makes every character come alive with his wonderful narration. His timing and inflection really emphasized how funny so much of Thackeray's story is, which I had forgotten. My husband and I thoroughly enjoyed listening to this book; it enlivened many long drives in the car.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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  • A S C SEPHENS
    11/20/16
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    Performance
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    "Vanity Fair - what a good story.....a good old fashioned story of love and life."

    This was a pleasure to hear .
    Long books so daunting to read - but to listen to the spoken word is a joy.
    Love the historical detail and language, read v.pleasingly.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Nadine
    Hunston, West Sussex, United Kingdom
    2/28/16
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    "A Wonderful Classic"
    Would you listen to Vanity Fair again? Why?

    This is my second time of listening to this book and I appreciated it more this time. Wonderful escapism and characters, with a final satisfying ending.


    What other book might you compare Vanity Fair to, and why?

    Dickens' 'A Tale of Two Cities'. Another story about war in France and fabulous characters


    What does John Castle bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

    The narration is lovely, bringing the characters alive, I particularly like his portrayal of the young George Osborne.


    Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Definitely, I always have an emotional reaction. There was a lot of very good humour and I'm bound to have cried at various points.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Agatha
    8/14/15
    Overall
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    "Revisiting Vanity Fair"

    How wonderful to revisit Vanity Fair and meet up with its characters which keep the listener engaged, thinking, calculating, guessing and generally being absorbed in the daily comings and goings of everyone.
    Written in 1840s, it is hard to believe it is not a story of families in modern society. Fashions may change but human nature does not.
    Anyone who has a love of the English language will enjoy this book.
    Although a long read, it is well worth it for the pure enjoyment of the lengths people go to to in social climbing, greed, lies and contempt and to be involved with the winners and losers.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Cathubodua
    8/8/15
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    "Highly entertaining"
    What made the experience of listening to Vanity Fair the most enjoyable?

    Vanity Fair is one of the great Victorian novels, with a huge cast of eccentric characters. John Castle brought them all to life as separate and very memorable entities, including the narrator, who has so much to say on so many subjects.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Vanity Fair?

    Jos Sedley at Vauxhall Gardens (and after); the 'little woman's' conquest of Queen's Crawley; Amelia's conquest of Brussels; any scene involving Mrs Major O'Dowd; old Miss Crawley swimming at Brighton; Becky's presentation at court… so many memorable moments!


    Which character – as performed by John Castle – was your favourite?

    A certain Crawley of the Guards.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    This is a book to savour, to take a couple of chapters at a time and really enjoy being along for (quite a long) ride. Despite the length, it ends too soon.


    Any additional comments?

    Thackeray on exceptional form.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • VersaillesThree
    7/31/15
    Overall
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    "Wonderful writing"
    Would you listen to Vanity Fair again? Why?

    Oh definitely!
    I've seen various TV/film adaptations so knew the basics of it all, but this unabridged reading leaves nothing out of Thackeray's excellent tome.


    What did you like best about this story?

    I absolutely loved every word of the author's in-depth descriptions, particularly of his characters, warts and all, and you can tell the ones he quite liked but also those he felt were ridiculous.

    I listened to this coincidentally at the time of the 200 year anniversary of the battle of Waterloo, so many parts of the novel all came together, and loving social history I was encouraged to do some research and to fit more pieces together of the whole Napoleonic era.


    What does John Castle bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

    He has a very easy voice to listen to as narrator but his characters were excellent, and his many foreign accents were very impressive!

    I only wish there were more John Castle readings available..


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Lawd no!
    At over 31 hours and such an in-depth novel, you had to concentrate most of the time and one's brain needed a break regularly!


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Ms
    7/20/15
    Overall
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    "To be taken with a pinch of salt"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Having started to read Vanity Fair without making much progress, I would recommend this audiobook as a way of getting into it. You find yourself quickly immersed in the world and get swept along by the narrative and the characters.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    I am still listening to the book and so far, there are quite a few favourite characters, mostly on account of how outlandish they are. Of course Becky Sharp has to be included because, although her behaviour is awful, I can't help admiring her chutzpa. I also like the old Sir Pitt Crawley because he snubs convention and has a wonderful country accent. Besides the simpering Amelia Sedley, there does seem to be one decent character, who is unappreciated by all the others - that is William Dobbin. Finally, I am delighted by the presence of one George Osborne in a satirical novel!


    What about John Castle’s performance did you like?

    He delivers the narrative in appropriately measured tones that create the world and the period very well. His deadpan expression at times is a perfect foil to the cutting humour.


    If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    Human nature in all its glory.


    Any additional comments?

    Written in the 19th century, it contains language and references that are shockingly racist to a 21st century ear. Of course, Thackeray could be satirising these very attitudes.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • J Eaton
    England
    7/20/15
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    "Wonderful listen"
    Where does Vanity Fair rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Very highly. For such a long title it was never anything but a pleasure to spend some time listening.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Vanity Fair?

    The scene in Brussels where Becky is selling her horses for extortionate prices.


    Which character – as performed by John Castle – was your favourite?

    All of John's characterisations were wonderful but I particularly enjoyed old Sir Pitt Crawley


    Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    I giggled constantly throughout the book and occasionally said aloud 'Becky!!!' in exasperation.


    Any additional comments?

    My first experience of Thackeray - and certainly it won't be my last!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Brenda
    6/28/15
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    Story
    "Pure Magic"
    Where does Vanity Fair rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    The best by a distance.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Of course Becky Sharpe. Such a feisty character for her time.


    Have you listened to any of John Castle’s other performances? How does this one compare?

    Not yet, but cannot wait for the next.


    Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Laugh, brilliant humour.


    Any additional comments?

    Cannot wait to read again.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Stanley Sokol
    London
    6/15/15
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    "True masterpiece"

    Highly entertaining novel, greatly describes the Napoleon era from the point of view of high society,while leaving unnecessary details which can be found in other more historically oriented.

    The book is also extremely well narrated with rich vocal range and emotion.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Mr. P. D. Selman
    Kent, U.K.
    4/25/15
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    Performance
    Story
    "A good read... if a little long"
    If you could sum up Vanity Fair in three words, what would they be?

    Witty, surprising, long.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Having never read any Thackery before, I was pleasantly surprised by how funny it was in places.


    What does John Castle bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

    Castle's narration just suits the material perfectly. Spot on.


    If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    'Come for the costumes; stay for the gags!'


    Any additional comments?

    If this book has a fault, it's that it's a little too long. I like long books but this one felt like it could have done with a little editorial trimming. Don't that put you off, though; it's worth sticking with.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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