Book pak Recorded Books 1999
CS ISBN 0788721860 $128.00 Sixteen cassettes
Before I listened to this magnificent performance, I groaned at the prospect of having to sit through more than twenty hours of Proust on tape. (And this program represents only half the complete novel.) The highly abstract, paragraph-long sentences! The apparently disconnected flashes of memory and perception that send us careening backward and forward in time! If ever a book demanded to be read and not heard, I thought, surely it was this one. I was wrong. Recorded Books has selected a narrator who makes Proust light-going, if that's imaginable. George Guidall draws us into the banter and gossip of the provincial French bourgeoisie; he makes us feel as if we were at the table with Marcel's family or sharing the parlor with Monsieur Swann's coterie. More impressive still is the ease with which he handles even the most difficult exposition. Try, for instance, Guidall's rendition of "Combray," a complex meditation on Marcel's childhood at his family's country home. What might have been sleep-inducing becomes a haunting, even mesmerizing, experience--the mark of a virtuoso audiobook narrator. J.M. Winner of AUDIOFILE Earphones Award © AudioFile 2001, Portland, Maine [Published: FEB/MAR 01]
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