LISTENER

Patricia

Arundel, MAINE, United States
  • 2
  • reviews
  • 5
  • helpful votes
  • 28
  • ratings
  • Anna and the Swallow Man

  • By: Gavriel Savit
  • Narrated by: Allan Corduner
  • Length: 6 hrs and 30 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 816
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 747
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 752

Kraków, 1939. A million marching soldiers and a thousand barking dogs. This is no place to grow up. Anna Łania is just seven years old when the Germans take her father, a linguistics professor, during their purge of intellectuals in Poland. She's alone. And then Anna meets the Swallow Man. He is a mystery, strange and tall, a skilled deceiver with more than a little magic up his sleeve. And when the soldiers in the streets look at him, they see what he wants them to see.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Maybe I'm not smart enough...

  • By Cheryl on 06-10-16

Captivating story with no answers

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 08-03-16

This story was captivating; I couldn't put it down; beautiful told, but so disappointing in the end as nothing was revealed.
In retrospect there were many inconsistencies, nevertheless the story is so unique and beautifully written it is well worth the time to listen.

  • NW

  • A Novel
  • By: Zadie Smith
  • Narrated by: Karen Bryson
  • Length: 10 hrs and 55 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 303
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 256
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 257

Somewhere in Northwest London stands Caldwell housing estate, relic of 70s urban planning. Five identical blocks, deliberately named: Hobbes, Smith, Bentham, Locke, and Russell. If you grew up there, the plan was to get out and get on, to something bigger, better. Thirty years later ex-Caldwell kids Leah, Natalie, Felix, and Nathan have all made it out, with varying degrees of succes - whatever that means....

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • I believe this book is best listened to than read

  • By BowedBookshelf on 09-28-12

Wish I had read this instead of listening to it

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 10-12-12

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

I would recommend the audiobook if you are not familiar with Britain and its dialects but I feel that it does not easily lend itself to audio as many chapters are brief (one line) and disjointed. At the beginning I had no idea what was going on. Being a visual person, I found it hard to create a picture initially because the text was so vague. I think it may have been easier if I was reading the book and could slow down and fully appreciate this writing technique. As the book progressed and I got a better picture of the characters and neighborhood I really appreciated Zadie Smith's talent in painting a vivid picture, although I have lived in London and I think this also helped a lot with my comprehension of the characters and setting.
The readers did an amazing job with sustaining their character dialects. Wow!
Zadie does not put in any superlative text so you really have to pay attention when listening as it is not easy to rewind and find what you missed - it's often very subtle but every line essential to the story.

Any additional comments?


I have read Zadie Smith's other books. I think her style is better suited to reading than listening. She has a great talent for getting beyond the superficial and revealing the reality of our thoughts and actions; what really motivates people and the influence of society, race and class on the choices we make.

I will probably listen to this over again or read the text so I can fully appreciate it.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful