Trade Ed. Random House Audio 2010
DD ISBN 9780307715692 $20.00
Library Ed. Books on Tape 2010
CD ISBN 978-0-3077-1570-8 $35.00 Eight CDs
What a wonderful-sounding subject—and what a windy disappointment! Harvey Sachs has assembled a book of secondhand opinions about Beethoven, Europe in 1824, and the Romantic Movement that reads as if it was cobbled together out of Google searches. On the page it may be tolerable, if it includes images of the paintings under discussion and you can listen to music while reading, especially during Sachs’s detailed analysis of the eponymous symphony. No such luck if you’re listening to Patrick Egan. He doesn’t make things worse than they already are, but neither does he improve matters, adding no sense of engagement or compelling interest in the text. And why record a book about a symphony and include no music? What a missed opportunity. B.G. © AudioFile 2010, Portland, Maine [Published: NOVEMBER 2010]
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