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Stephen Fry Presents a Selection of Oscar Wilde's Short Stories Audiobook

Stephen Fry Presents a Selection of Oscar Wilde's Short Stories

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Publisher's Summary

"Oscar Wilde's Fairy Tales continue to exert the same pull over the imagination and emotions as they did when he first read them to his children in the 1880s. Written with inspired poetic intensity and sudden flowerings of the matchless wit for which he is so well remembered, the stories combine the wisdom of parables with the impact of drama. I have loved them since I was a child: indeed they continue to make a child of me. I do not mind admitting that at the recording some passages were hard to read out loud without choking. I hope you will be as entranced by them as I have always been." written by Stephen Fry.

©2008 SamFry Limited (P)2008 HarperCollins Publishers

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  • Wendy
    Denny, Stirlingshire, United Kingdom
    "A family favourite"

    These short, but entertaining, stories are a big hit with both my 'near teenage' son and my 20 year old daughter. Stephen's voice is, as always, a pleasure to listen to; and the stories are both entertaining and engaging.
    I recommend this for a car journey where you want everyone to just calm down.

    11 of 11 people found this review helpful
  • Tim
    High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire, United Kingdom
    "More than just kid's stories.."

    Having seen the other reviews, I was wary of this product & thought it may prove to be a flat note in Stephen Fry's/ Oscar Wilde's repertoire. Happily both were on top form with Oscar Wilde writing some devilishly clever stories, with his protegee Stephen Fry giving just the right voice to do them justice.

    All in all, there are 6 stories (including a story-within-a-story) at 15- 30 minutes a piece, so they are manageable in a long car journey/ walk. They are as follows:

    1) The Devoted Friend
    2) The Happy Prince
    3) The Nightingale and the Rose
    4) The Remarkable Rocket
    5) The Selfish Giant
    6) The Young King

    With all the stories I was expecting them to be either old fashioned or babyish. Fortunately they are neither & you can see why Fry says on the back cover that 'I do not mind admitting that at the recording some passages were hard to read out loud without choking'.

    Like the 'Stephen Fry Presents - Short Stories by Anton Chekhov', though, I have the same nagging grievance - why is it only 6 stories & 2 hours 14 minutes of material? Fair enough that Wilde wrote few short stories, but a double album with the Chekhov stuff (or better still with some of Wilde's under-rated poetry) would have made a much more desirable product.

    That said, I can think of few instances where a great narrator has been so perfectly matched with an author. Wilde & Fry are very much cut from the same cloth & Fry has even made a film playing his doupelganger.
    The only thing I can think of comparable to this pairing is that of Dawkins reading Darwin on 'On The Origin of Species' & I wonder why it is not done more often.
    Can anyone imagine The Queen reading 'Queen Victoria's Journals', or Terry Pratchett reading 'The Lord of the Rings'? It would give a whole new meaning to the phrase 'bringing a book to life'...

    9 of 9 people found this review helpful
  • Lauren
    LondonUnited Kingdom
    "Simply Delicious"

    I could not help crying as I heard the story of the Selfish Giant, and the voice of Stephen Fry reading the story simply made the entire listening experience delicious. It is a guilty pleasure of mine to listen to a wee bedtime story, and this audiobook is the perfect thing for a sleepy-head. For children and adults alike. As I say, it is simply delicious.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Gustav
    London, United Kingdom
    "Oscar Wilde + Stephen Fry = Truth"

    How could you possibly go wrong when you combine Oscar Wilde and Stephen Fry? They were made for each other!

    I don't like short story compendiums very much, so the fact that I gave this a 4 is a good rating. (5 are reserved for books that truly moves me.)

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Ian
    London, United Kingdom
    "Fry brings Wilde to life"

    That these stories were written by Wilde for his own children just makes them all the more special. Stephen Fry narrates them with his usual inimitable style and charm and really brings them to life.

    The story that stood out for me was the tale of The Happy Prince. Hearing it again brought back memories of it being read to me in school assembly and it was read with such tenderness by Fry it is hard not to feel emotional as the narrative progresses.

    I had downloaded the book to listen to with my daughter as she went to sleep but I stayed listening long after she had dropped off. Highly recommended.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Donna
    HarrietshamUnited Kingdom
    "A gem of an audiobook for young & old alike !"

    Exceptionally narrated by Stephen Fry, these classic Oscar Wilde stories which include "The Unfriendly Giant" and the "The Happy Prince" reminds us of the need for giving to those who are not as fortunate as ourselves, and to embrace those who appear different and show them kindness and love. A great moral builder for children, and reminder for us adults. A gem of an audiobook!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Amazon Customer
    "A pleasant afternoons listening"

    Never heard these stories before, enjoyed them as much as the Importance of being Earnest! Could listen to Stephen Fry reading all day, adds personality to the characters.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
    "Some what of a disappointment😑"

    Sadly to say perhaps my expectations were set too high. Some times we can have unrealistic notions. This was one of those times. A medley of stories with a woven thread of mixed ideology, religion, worldly wisdom and platitudes, which bore more resemblance to scrambled eggs than a delicate soufflé. Very, very disappointed.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • K J L Finesilver
    "recording issue"

    that there was no break between stories meant listening was a jarring experience. I hope this issue was technical not stylistic.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Yas
    "Read and written by masters!"
    What made the experience of listening to Stephen Fry Presents a Selection of Oscar Wilde's Short Stories the most enjoyable?

    I read the stories when I was a child. Having them read by Stephen Fry brought back some fond childhood memories. If you have children I find that these stories are great for them to listen to and to discuss the morals in the stories.

    What was one of the most memorable moments of Stephen Fry Presents a Selection of Oscar Wilde's Short Stories?

    The Selfish Giant used to be a little scary for one of the younger children in the family. However, a year later they were loving the story as they could understand it better. (Age 9)

    Which scene did you most enjoy?

    The Happy Prince where the swallow takes all the things the prince gives to help the people. So moving!

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

    I could happily listen to it in one sitting, although the book is split into 6 short stories so can be listened to in a number of sittings.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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