Rupert Degas narrates this collection of stories published in 1901. Degas's aristocratic English accent suits the audiobook's tone of moralistic ethnocentricity. In fact, the authors use the preface and final chapters to frame this work as a quasi-Christian Bible prequel. Most stories, however, seem without bias, and Degas portrays the celestial host of characters with... Read More
Set in a corrupt Italian principality, Stendhal's 1839 comic masterpiece is often called the greatest of political novels. This fine new audiobook narration by Nicholas Boulton captures all the cosmopolitan wit and worldly detachment of its author's distinctive voice. Like many other nineteenth-century masters, and unlike today's more detached authors, Stendhal is companion and... Read More
Victor Hugo's genius for verbosity is on ample display here; he never used two words when a hundred would do. Simon Vance's narration is fluid and evocative, but even his excellent work may not be enough to get many listeners through sections of this audiobook such as the exposition on English lighthouses. The story of a man whose mutilated face makes him a successful clown has... Read More
This classic depiction of Black family life in Kansas in the 1930s is narrated with grace and skill by Jaime Lincoln Smith. The classic work brings the struggles and challenges of early-twentieth-century Black American experience to life, complete with Hughes's skillful use of dialect and prose. Smith deftly switches into period diction and local accents, voicing each family... Read More
C.S. Lewis, author of THE CHRONICLES OF NARNIA, believed that "you should hear every sentence you write as if it were being read aloud or spoken." So it seems apt that we should now have the opportunity to LISTEN to Lewis's observations on the art of writing, all delivered in John Lee's sonorous Oxbridge tone and phrasings. Lee does a wonderful job of rendering the balance and... Read More
This audio collection includes most of Wilde's short fiction, most of which, in turn, is fairy tales. The writing is beautiful, of course, but the stories preach a rather simplistic morality, more appropriate for children than for adult listeners. All the narrators are equally good, but they were recorded in different studios with different production values. The background... Read More
Flaubert's exacting prose has a particular affinity to the ear, and Andrew Wincott's narration of three late stories highlights the French master's style, and his verbal evocation of the senses. Flaubert's art is defined by keen observation of detail, precision of word choice, and command of prose rhythms, and Wincott stresses these qualities with an unhurried delivery that... Read More
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