LISTENER

arye orona

DALLAS, TX, United States
  • 1
  • review
  • 76
  • helpful votes
  • 242
  • ratings
  • For Whom the Bell Tolls

  • By: Ernest Hemingway
  • Narrated by: Campbell Scott
  • Length: 16 hrs and 17 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,366
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,311
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,323

In 1937, Ernest Hemingway traveled to Spain to cover the civil war there for the North American Newspaper Alliance. Three years later he completed the greatest novel to emerge from "the good fight", For Whom the Bell Tolls.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Incorrect charges of censorship.

  • By arye orona on 07-27-14

Incorrect charges of censorship.

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

Reviewed: 07-27-14

Any additional comments?

Having read some of the previous reviews about censorship, and the editing out of curse words in this audio version, I felt that I should add a quick note on Hemingway's use of language in this novel. To give a sort of Spanish feel to the language, he writes a good portion of his dialogue a though it were directly translated from Spanish. So, "What passes with you?" can bear some getting used to. Also, he uses "thou" and "thy" at times in place of "you" to represent the moving between formal (usted) and informal (tu) Spanish. But, the big kicker (the one that seems to be making listeners upset) is the way he handles cursing. I believe that lines like, "I obscenity in the milk of thy tiredness," and "Where the un-nameable is this vileness I am to guard" are causing people to think that the audiobook has been censored in some way. It hasn't. Although, I'm not entirely clear on why Hemingway decided edit his English curse words in this way (strangely, the ones in Spanish are left intact), they are part of his original text; I checked my paper-bound version to be sure.
So, I hope you don't let reviews warning of censorship (or my technical review here) scare you away from a truly wonderful, thought provoking novel. You should read one of the reviews discussing the horror of war, love in the face of death, excitement of battle, camaraderie of soldiers, and think about buying (or not) the audiobook in those terms.

76 of 77 people found this review helpful