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Publisher's Summary

Exclusively from Audible

Pip is an orphan, brought up in a village on the Essex marshes by his disagreeable sister and her husband Joe Gargery, the kind-hearted village blacksmith. Life is harsh and Pip has few prospects until he receives from an anonymous benefactor the chance of escaping the forge for a more promising life in London. But his expectations are fraught with difficulties as he is haunted by figures from his past such as the escaped convict Magwitch, the eccentric Miss Havisham, and her proud and beautiful ward, Estella. As he passes from childhood to adulthood he in time discovers his true self.

Powerfully moving, the story is immersed in Dickens's own memories of the past, raising questions about the extent to which individuals affect each other's lives.

Often considered Dickens's best-loved work, Great Expectations features some of his most memorable characters and continues to attract fans of all ages.

Dickens was one of eight children from a very poor family, with his father eventually being sent to debtors' prison. At the age of 12, Dickens had no choice but to start work in order to help clear the family debt. It was this troublesome childhood that provided him with much of the material for his novels and lent him a sympathetic voice for the poor.

Narrator Biography

Martin Jarvis is one of Britain's most admired actors. His audiobook output is legendary. He is described in Vanity Fair as 'the Olivier of audiobooks' and 'genius of the Spoken Word' in the LA Times. Award-winning recordings range from titles by Charles Dickens, P.G. Wodehouse and Michael Frayn to thrillers by Jeffrey Archer, Wilbur Smith, Ian Fleming and Dick Francis. Martin's BBC Just William recordings are worldwide best sellers.

Martin Jarvis has starred in many acclaimed West End and National Theatre productions and received the Theatre World Award as Jeeves on Broadway. Numerous UK television appearances encompass Law & Order, Doctor Who, Endeavour, Inspector Morse and The Forsyte Saga. In America: Murder She Wrote, Numb3rs, Cosmos and Walker, Texas Ranger. Films include Titanic, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and Wreck-It Ralph. Videogames: 'Alfred' in Batman, 'Finn McMissile' in Cars.

Martin is invested by HM the Queen as Officer of Order of the British Empire (OBE).

Public Domain (P)2014 Audible, Inc.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
  • Neil
  • San Francisco, CA, United States
  • 02-06-10

Great Expectations delivered

This is an excellent story and Martin Jarvis does a fantastic job. All of Dickens characters come alive. It was like being in the front row of a play. Best audible book I have heard thus far.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

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  • Robin
  • Kew, Australia
  • 12-30-11

Outstanding

Any additional comments?

This is one of the greatest works of English literature read with enormous intelligence and understanding by an excellent actor. I had read Dickens as a young man and liked him, but listening to this reading of Great Expectations was a revelation, showing me for the first time how truly great he is. If you only ever listen to one audiobook, this should be the one.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Ami
  • Hong Kong, Hong Kong
  • 02-10-11

Just How Dickens Should Be Read

One of Dickens' better reads, Martin Javis complements it perfectly with his vivid reading style. It's evident he's given careful thought to nuance and characterisation, and it really brings the text to life. Dickens is really very theatrical, and in many ways is so much better read out loud; this is Great Expectations at its best.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Loved it!

Martin Jarvis is a master narrator! He brings the book to life. It felt more like listening to a play than listening to a novel.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Absolutely wonderful

I haven't read much Dickens, and what little
I have read was long ago. The book and
the performance were revelations. I cannot say enough good things about either. I would recommend this to anyone with the slightest interest or curiosity about Dickens, or who would be interested in seeing how a reader can bring forth so much meaning from every sentence.

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Great Expectations

This was one of those books required in high school and didn't like too much. There was always a sneaking suspicion there may have been more the book and perhaps some of those pages skipped were important. Liked the book the second time around and thought it thought provoking. So glad I went back to actually read every page. Though written in an earlier time, it is just as relevant to people and their behaviors today.

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Narrators performance brings dickens to life.

Classic literature brought superbly to life by martin jarvis. I'm on a roll with jarvis narrated literature at the moment

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  • Barbara
  • Pasadena, CA USA
  • 05-23-15

Great Expectations met expectations

The audible with Martin Jarvis was wonderfully read. The audio is unabridged and faithful to the edition of the book I had. I had read the book in college years ago and quite frankly hated it. Now years later as an adult in grad school I appreciate the novel more. I had not realized Dickens humor in the book.

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Dickens' Finest Work!

And narrated by one of the finest performers I've experienced in thirty-plus years of such listening. Bravo! Bravo! Bravo!

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 12-21-09

surpassed my expectations

Having heard the abridged version and seen Dickens adaptations on TV I couldn't understand why people said his writing was funny until I heard this. Martin Jarvis is so much more interesting than I can generate in my own mind. His intonation and accents bring this alive. The character observations are terrific and this is so much richer than the narrative of the story.

15 of 15 people found this review helpful

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  • miss
  • 02-11-12

excellent listen

I recently watched this on the television and i couldn't stop thinking about it , i got this title with my first credit with audible and i enjoyed it so much , the language wasn't hard to understand and i found myself laughing and crying in parts of the listen . for my first ever Charles Dickens book it really was very enjoyable and accessible.

10 of 10 people found this review helpful

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  • Michele
  • 12-06-09

Brilliant rendition

I have recently decided (having failed to read classics as a kid) to listen to them by audio book. This was brilliantly read and I'll now continue my objective by purchasing a second classic read by Martin Jarvis. He has brought the characters to life brilliantly.

20 of 21 people found this review helpful

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  • Zigg
  • 10-06-13

Brilliant Story Brilliantly Told

What did you like most about Great Expectations?

Recently, I have set about filling the gaps in my literary education by "reading" the books picked by the UK in the BBC's Great Read project of 2003 - the British public were asked to vote for their favourite all time book. Embarrassingly, I had never read a Dickens novel. The book takes a little while to get going but is a brilliant read and the narration is superb. Great Expectations was the 17th most loved book in the BBC survey. I would have to put it in my top 3. I have now his other books to "read" - many hour of bliss, greatly expected.

What other book might you compare Great Expectations to, and why?

Pride and Prejudice - if only because their are both brilliantly told classic love stories.

What about Martin Jarvis’s performance did you like?

Excellent, all the characters are brought to life with the perfect intonation

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

Yes

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

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  • nigel
  • 12-23-12

Martin Jarvis makes this work

I had tried reading a paper copy of "Great Expectations" a few years ago, but disliked the accents and patois of Joe the Blacksmith; but in this audio version of the book he is my favourite character thanks to the narration of Martin Jarvis, who does a great job throughout the book.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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  • Richard
  • 08-09-12

Brilliant narration of a great classic story

Brilliantly narrated by Martin Jarvis and very much enjoyed. I know it's a Dickens classic, but I've never read it or watched a dramatisation past the very opening grave yard scene, I didn't think it would appeal. There's a massive advantage for me in having the Dickens novels narrated. I could never bring the characters to life in the same way. The beauty of having the book narrated rather than a dramatised version is that you get to hear all the wonderful prose and don't miss out on any of the story.

13 of 14 people found this review helpful

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  • Angela
  • 08-09-10

an old favourite so wonderfully read

I love this reading of Great Expectations. Martin Jarvis' wonderful narration brings it to life and the story which I have long loved once again hooked me in.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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  • Fatou
  • 12-23-12

Martin Jarvis rocks

The audio book for Great Expectations by any other actor would be dull. Martin Jarvis, brings Dickens' masterpiece to life!



Funny, well narrated and Great Expectation is my all time favourite in my library.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Stephen
  • 04-29-12

It's is why they are called classics

I loved the whole of this book. Read by a man we could call a master. A wonderful book that blends the spices of human emotion and character into a delicious banquet. It was my first Dickens novel, it will not be my last. The characters became acquaintainces, friends and enemies. The story is complex yet understandable. The characters very human. What a clever Dickens!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Paul
  • 07-24-12

Heavy going, but worth the effort

What can I say that hasn't already been said in any English Lit. GCSE essay? I got a C so this review probably won't be great!
Every now and then I pick up a classic just to see what all the fuss is about. If you want a snapshot of Victorian life, then this is your book. I think it's about class struggle, tragic love, loss, friendship and the grass being greener. All good themes really.
The beginning was gripping, the middle somewhat confusing and the ending left everything wrapped up.
Definitely better than Jane Eyre!
Martin Jarvis does an excellent narration job, bringing what would have a been a heavy and dull read alive in spoken word. This is a great example of how audio books can make some large tomes more accessible.
Here endeth my review.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 11-25-17

Loved the version of this book. wonderful narrat'n

This is a wonder narration of a splendid story. I enjoyed it from start to finish.

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  • Mallory
  • 09-06-17

Wonderful book, beautifully read

I hadn't read a Dickens since high school and absolutely loved it. What a craftsman of the English language, and an extraordinary wit. The reader was great, the characters' voices were quite believable (although some of the women sounded a little ridiculous... but then, they were rather ridiculous women)