This audiobook is from the fourth volume of a six-volume collection of diverse mystery and detective stories from around the world, assembled by Julian Hawthorne. From a letter to Roman Senator L. Licinius Sura written by Pliny the Younger in the 1st Century CE describing his experiences with the supernatural to tales from all over Europe throughout the early 20th-century that touch on tragic irony, horrific torture, Faustian deals and mystery, this audiobook has many rare gems. Most notable is Voltaire's "The Babylonian", considered by some to be the primogenitor of the detective genre. Scott Woodside performs the collection lending this audio the air of a radio drama with his deep driving voice.
In the six volumes of the Library of the World's Best Mystery and Detective Stories, Julian Hawthorne presents us thrilling and mysterious short stories from all corners of the world. Some of the stories appeared in this 1907 collection for the first time translated into English, and many of them come from unexpected sources, such as the letters of Pliny the Younger, or a Tibetan manuscript. In the first volume, we find stories written by American authors.
Public Domain (P)2012 Audible, Inc.
The stories are engaging and interesting, however, the enjoyment is spoiled by the narrator: Scott Woodside's extraordinary mispronunciations.
"Reader should have learned French."
The first few stories were written by French authors. Unfortunately the reader had not learned French and he mispronounced such simple words as "monsieur" which he pronounced as "moan-sewer." As a lifelong mystery reader, some of these stories were predictable. So, I look for how the story is told. They were so-so overall.
Anyone who knew how to speak French.
"When did Zoroaster become Zoo Roaster.. Mon Sewer."
OK so the content was OK.. historical tales, many of which were not just detective tales but OK from a historical standpoint... and that part was good... but I had to wade through the gut wrenching mispronunciations of the storytellers narrator. Really Mon Sewer, and Zoo Roaster .. it just make the entire effort seem flawed...
If you are getting paid to read this stuff in English... then we expect you to read it in adult English not pedantic English.... really a bummer
"Not Actually Mysteries"
None of the stories I listened to were mysteries or detective stories. I only listened to a few and then gave up so there may have been some hidden gems that I missed.
This is a collection of very simplistic and not very good tales of supposedly mysterious stories. They are not mysterious, unless the mystery is how in the world they were ever chosen to be published. Also, the narrator is a terrible reader. His voice is lovely but it is a shame he does not know how to read properly. He pauses in between words when no such pause is called for and interrupts the flow of the narration. He mistakes magnetism for hypnotism when the text is clearly referring to the latter. If it were copied wrong in the text it should have been caught long before being said out loud. Another unbearable annoyance is that the stories are French in origin, so names of people and places are French, which the narrator can neither pronounce nor accent properly. All in all a great disappointment!! Do not even bother to download it. If I were allowed, I would not even give it a half star, but I must give it something. So.......
"Worst Narrator Ever"
I have well over 100 audio books which means that when I say this is the worst narrator I've ever heard, I say it with some experience behind me. Mispronounced words, inappropriate pauses between words in a phrase, and pronouncing "a" with a long-a sound to mention just a few. I'm not even sure if the stories were any good - the narration was too distracting.
"Can you ignore mispronunciations ?"
I don't know how the process of recording a book is done but if there is supposed to be an audio editor they did a very poor job. Scott Woodside has a pleasant, easily-understood voice but the glaring mispronunciations are disconcerting. Because I like short stories I was able to forgive the errors. Shouldn't someone be noticing these errors or previewing possible difficulties before the recording is made ? Not every narrator might be familiar, for example, with a "brazier" and would (understandably) pronounce it "brassiere", and "sow" ( rhyming with "now") is a perfectly reasonable mispronunciation of "sou."
As I mentioned, someone needs to preview and go over possible pronunciation problems before the recording session. I do not fault the narrator for this omission.
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