Milan Kundera's sixth novel springs from a casual gesture of a woman to her swimming instructor, a gesture that creates a character in the mind of a writer named Kundera....
Rich in its stories, characters, and imaginative range, The Book of Laughter and Forgetting is the novel that brought Milan Kundera his first big international success in the late 1970s....
In this dark farce of a novel, set in an old-fashioned Central European spa town, eight characters are swept up in an accelerating dance....
All too often, this brilliant novel of thwarted love and revenge miscarried has been read for its political implications....
One of the 20th century's enduring works, One Hundred Years of Solitude is a widely beloved and acclaimed novel known throughout the world and the ultimate achievement in a Nobel Prize-winning career....
Albert Camus' The Stranger is one of the most widely read novels in the world, with millions of copies sold....
Fyodor Dostoyevsky is a titanic figure among the world's great authors, and The Brothers Karamazov is often hailed as his finest novel....
The Founding Fathers tried to protect us from the threat they knew, the tyranny that overcame ancient democracy....
When it was published in 1955, Lolita immediately became a cause celebre because of the freedom and sophistication with which it handled the unusual erotic predilections of its protagonist....
Casting light on the most serious of problems and at the same time saying not one serious sentence....
From the Nobel Prize-winning author of One Hundred Years of Solitude comes a masterly evocation of an unrequited passion so strong that it binds two people's lives together for more than half a century....
Leo Tolstoy's classic story of doomed love is one of the most admired novels in world literature....
In 1949 - when the dance rage is the mambo - two young Cuban musicians, recent immigrants, make their way up to the grand stage of New York....
Across seven tales, Haruki Murakami brings his powers of observation to bear on the lives of men who, in their own ways, find themselves alone....
In the stories that make up Oblivion, David Foster Wallace joins the rawest, most naked humanity with the infinite involutions of self-consciousness - a combination that is dazzlingly, uniquely his....
Still considered one of the best books ever written about bullfighting, Death in the Afternoon reflects Hemingway's belief that bullfighting was more than mere sport....
A young woman is in love with a successful surgeon, a man torn between his love for her and his incorrigible womanizing. His mistress, a free-spirited artist, lives her life as a series of betrayals - while her other lover, earnest, faithful, and good, stands to lose everything because of his noble qualities. In a world where lives are shaped by irrevocable choices and fortuitous events, and everything occurs but once, existence seems to lose its substance, its weight. Hence we feel "the unbearable lightness of being." A major achievement from one of the world's truly great writers, Milan Kundera's magnificent novel of passion and politics, infidelity and ideas, encompasses the extremes of comedy and tragedy, illuminating all aspects of human existence.
Such a lovely calming voice. He got me through some hard slow parts. Some elements of the story were confusing for me but I'm sure some research will sort that out!
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Excellent book about a philosophical way of life. Recommendable for all audiences. My first Kundera experience and am looking forward to more!
Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?
Definitely. A delightful jigsaw of stories overlaid with non-judgemental "light" philosophical asides.
What was one of the most memorable moments of The Unbearable Lightness of Being?
I enjoyed several of the "philosophical" tangents that the narrator took. They added depth to the story, gave us insight into the characters that we'd not have gleaned from the story alone, creating humanity beyond what would be in a more conventional storyline. A third dimension.
What about Richmond Hoxie’s performance did you like?
My impression is that Richmond Hoxie was extremely familiar with the book. He had just the right levity at times when it was needed but also created the characters perfectly.
If you could rename The Unbearable Lightness of Being, what would you call it?
Any additional comments?
This book lives up to it's hype. Worth the time, extremely enjoyable. More than "just a story".
There are parts of this book that I thoroughly enjoyed. There are moments of great beauty through skilful prose and a thoughtful story. However, I think you can only enjoy an opinionated book if you agree with the opinions expressed. Unfortunately, in enough of the cases to spoil it, I did not.
My other complaint is quoting the ancients to prove your point rather than illustrate it. Euclid was a truly great mind - it took us a couple of thousand years to show his work as incomplete, but eventually we moved past him.
I would go as far as to say I could possibly be a fan of the author, but not the philosopher.
I know others have found this book very deep and enjoyable - it is well written, so I am wary of putting another reader off it just because I didn't enjoy parts of it.
18 of 21 people found this review helpful
Kundera's work is always profound. His characters face all the usual dilemmas thrown at us by life and the complex business of being "human". Some characters soar above the mundane, others are sucked down by it. Kundera never tires of throwing us the deep questions - the plot is richly drawn with a sweet and sour mixture of humour and sorrow. This is provocative philosophy wrapped in a vivid sugar coating of human endeavour and intrigue.
8 of 9 people found this review helpful
I read this at university and it brought back lots of memories. Great story bit of philosophy, bit of love, bit of history, and all good. Throughly enjoyed it, narrated well.
6 of 7 people found this review helpful
What would have made The Unbearable Lightness of Being better?
I just lost interest, wasn’t sure where the story was going and there a few disturbing themes at times. I did not enjoy it at all. Sorry.
Would you ever listen to anything by Milan Kundera again?
What did you like about the performance? What did you dislike?
The narrator was very pleasant clear and I happily listen to her again.
10 of 18 people found this review helpful
Every one can find their own shadows, a part of them here. As the Arthur, I'm as fond of them all as I fear them. It is a amazing book to read, and to be read again and again every few years
It lost me when it said who would be interested in blacks killing each other in 14th Century. So thanks but no thanks .
It's these subtle reference divide and give weight to the notion that superiority exists. It doesn't.
1 of 2 people found this review helpful
The reading was very well done. He brought me close in against the feeling of the book and prevented it from ever getting dull, as a more prosaic, dispassionate reader could have.
I don't think there's anything i can say about the book which hasn't been said better by others. It's a book of philosophy / psychology but unusually dense with substance. Expresses every idea with a very high ratio of beauty to wordcount.
The book will affect how I see things for a long time. Particularly the idea that there are at least two correct and valid ways of seeing the same situation e.g. a strange coincidence.
The prosaic and factual one which says 'By law of probability coincidences are bound to happen constantly.'
And the poetic view which intelligently seeks out and appreciates the beauty and conceptual nuances in such events.
To limit yourself only to the former view is to rob yourself of beauty in your life.
That's something I'm going to change.
What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?
I just didn't like the book
What was most disappointing about Milan Kundera’s story?
The overt Madonna and the Whore style sexism
Did Richmond Hoxie do a good job differentiating each of the characters? How?
Yeah, he did pretty well with what he had
What character would you cut from The Unbearable Lightness of Being?
Any additional comments?
I couldn't finish this one. Not for the empowered female listener.
This book does not follow a classic structure and uses the characters to expound philosophical theories, some of which are good, but most left me scratching my head. and as you are bombarded with so many theories, the book suffers from a lack of focus.
There will be some people who will completely disagree with this assessment and give it 5 stars and I can understand that assessment, as at times the book seems like is going to burst into life. It just didn't do it for me.
Any additional comments?
Another book I couldn't finish! I listen whilst driving and this book did not grip me and I found my mind wandering.
1 of 2 people found this review helpful