A Signature Performance: Elijah Wood becomes the first narrator to bring a youthful voice and energy to the story, perhaps making it the closest interpretation to Twain’s original intent.
It took me nearly 'til Chapter The Last to forget it was Elijah Wood reading. I had a little trouble believing his Jim, but after a while either he got better or I got used to him. His Huck was great, and that's the most important voice to get right.
It's terrific and important that this work is read afresh, as the author intended, without softening the language. The recording was enjoyable in its own right, but its cultural importance far overshadowed my quibbles with voices and accents. Thank you, Audible!
In Beatrice Prior's dystopian Chicago, society is divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue - Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). On an appointed day of every year, all sixteen-year-olds must select the faction to which they will devote the rest of their lives. For Beatrice, the decision is between staying with her family and being who she really is - she can't have both. So she makes a choice that surprises everyone, including herself.
I plan to mommy-daughter listen to this with my young teen, who is dying to see the movies. There's a lot of tough stuff in this story, but it's stuff we should talk about.
The narrator has great suspense and excitement, once I got past her very-teen voice and slightly choppy start. I love how she distinguishes between characters' voices without obviously "doing voices" of male and female characters. She's a good choice for this series.
Ellen DeGeneres published her first book of comic essays, the #1 best selling My Point...and I Do Have One, way back in 1996. Not one to rest on her laurels, the witty star of stage and screen has since dedicated her life to writing a hilarious new book. That book is this audiobook.
Ellen is far funnier when she's delivering her standup routines in public than when reading her book aloud to an empty room. Like many performers, she has more energy and better timing when she has an audience. Quite a few of the chapters in this book are also standup routines I remember. The audiobook falls flat to me. Read it yourself and imagine her delivery, or just catch her on TV.
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