At 34 hours in length, this is quite an undertaking, but there's no one better qualified than Simon Vance to lead us through this audio journey. He parses the author's long sentences well, pausing sufficiently to make the details easy to follow while still maintaining a quick enough pace to keep the story going. Most enjoyable is his voicing of the myriad characters who appear in the narrative - and characters they certainly are. Vance times their occasionally hilarious exchanges especially well. All of this is delivered in a manner that suggests that Vance revels in Dickens's prose and sly humor, and the listener cannot help but revel along with him. Three cheers for Vance - and not the least for his stamina!
In David Copperfield - the novel he described as his "favorite child" - Dickens drew revealingly on his own experiences to create one of his most exuberant and enduringly popular works, filled with tragedy and comedy in equal measure.
©1923 Public Domain; (P)2009 Tantor
This is Dickens at its very best and I am savoring every chapter. I thought I knew the book from screen versions but there is so much more to enjoy in this unabridged recording. Simon Vance is the perfect reader and brilliantly brings to life the personalities of the characters in the way he reproduces the dialogue by maintaining a perfect balance of idiosyncracy and credibility.
This was a pure pleasure from beginning to end. Simon Vance has a unique voice for each character and has a really clear voice that is easy to listen to.
""I am born.""
Wow, was I ever. This was the first Dickens I read "voluntarily". It is well appreciated in my present reading. I know there is another reading of this story on Audible & I am here to say that I couldn't be happier w/ Simon Vance's version. From his "Maser Davey" of Mr Peggotty to his villanous "Copperfield" of Uriah Heap, Mr Vance is up for the duty of telling this increible story. I went to this book after listening to "The Last Dickens", purchashed here on Audible. That book introduced me to the American Superstar that was Charles Dickens. Could you just imagine waiting for these monthly installments in 1850? This book is a flawless study of all that humanity has to offer. Charles Dickens was able to put a masterpiece together in masterful pieces. Treat your spirit to this novel. It will give you the strength of the ages. Some things are simply timeless.
"More saints per capita than any book by Butler"
'David Copperfield' contains more saints per capita than any beatified book by Butler. Dickens is amazing in his ability to be both grand and personal. 'David Copperfield' is sprawling, with dozens of threads that weave around David Copperfield's youth and adulthood. IT is amazing not only how he can transform a character through time, but also show that our perceptions of those same characters are drawn often from imperfect information and overly simple assumptions. Yes, there are parts of 'David Copperfield' that float between the melodramatic and the grotesque, but one doesn't read Dickens for the unmoving, normal or embellished. There are a handful of novels that I would consider to be the literary equivalent of scripture: 'Les Miserables', 'the Idiot', 'Anna Karenina', and for sure 'David Copperfield'.
There are several moments in 'David Copperfield' when, as a reader, you recognize you will never be half the writer Dickens was (on deadline). He might just be second to Shakespeare in my book, or at least be among a small cadre of writers that belong on the silver pedestal below the Bard.
This isn't as technically perfect as 'Great Expectations', but it is top tier Dickens for sure. A massive novel that floats with the weight of a beach read half its size. If you are going to read a Dickens, this might not be your first stop, but it shouldn't be far from your second.
I was admittedly intimidated by the length of this work and have passed reading this book in the past. However, my like of all things Dickens drove me to purchase this book and I have to say, it is one of the most delightful reads in my experience. Simon Vance is an amazing narrator and brings this story to life. The story is so full of richness and experience. I highly recommend this book.
"Excellent presentation of a great story."
Not much to say about Dickens or "David Copperfield." It's a classic. It's one of his greatest works, full of sharp, vivid characters and subtle emotions that take many chapters to bloom. Amazing work. A student of writing can examine this the rest of their life and never put a finger on exactly how Dickens succeeds in leading the story to the powerful conclusions and climaxes it reaches. At times it is literally, quite literally, breathtaking.
Simon Vance is an excellent reader and handles this book well. No complaints at all. My own opinion is that Robert Whitfield manages Dickens just a little bit better, with a slightly more insightful nuance at points. I couldn't explain that if I had to, but that's my impression. Whitfield doesn't read this one, and Vance is exceptional and lively and handles the complex prose superbly.
"Great classic story narrated perfectly"
Excellent story, excellent narrator. Charles Dickens' story brought to life.
Incredible English classic read by a most gifted narrator. I honestly became quite sad when the story was ending. Most highly recommended.
"Incredible Story and Narration"
It really is amazing how much Dickens made this an autobiography that feels so much like he was speaking of himself. The memoirs and imagery is incredible. And Vance really is one of the greatest narrators out there. All of the characters breathe life and emotion and you really actually gain so much more from him reading it to you than you could ever get by yourself. Great stuff.
"David Copperfield is awesome."
Wonderful narrator who does true justice to an outstanding classic.
Let's take it as a given that Dickens was a great writer. Even if you have read the book in hardcover, consider listening to it. Simon Vance's narration is the best I've heard in the 200+ books I've bought. He brings the colorful characters to life.
This is my favorite Charles Dickens book. If you like any of his stuff you must get this too.
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