Robert Pinsky's new verse translation of the Inferno makes it clear to the contemporary listener, as no other in English has done, why Dante is universally considered a poet of great power, intensity, and strength. This critically acclaimed translation was awarded the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Poetry and the Harold Morton Landon Translation Award given by the Academy of American Poets. Well versed, rapid, and various in style, the Inferno is narrated by Pinsky and three other leading poets: Seamus Heaney, Frank Bidart, and Louise Glück.
©1994 Robert Pinsky (P)2014 Penguin Audio
Lousie Glück made me want to pass out with boredom. Each of the other narrators had an ok delivery, relatively interesting and such, but Glück read in the most monotone, dreary and sole-destroying way that every part she read was ruined. I struggled very hard to actually listen to what was being said – easy to hear her, just so difficult to concentrate when there is no emphasis or enthusiasm behind her words.
The others’ parts did the book justice and kept me listening. Unfortunately, however, all of the parts sounded like they were recorded in a call center. The quality of the sound was just awful – a subtle low murmuring in the background kept grabbing my attention. Unacceptable and just seems amateurish.
I assumed the different narrators would be reading different characters but instead the readers took it in turns to deliver different chapters. This kind of struck me as odd.
Lastly, they only did the first book – so any continuation of the story will need to be switched to different readers, which feels a bit inconsistent.
Much better off to get the full “Divine Comedy” to begin with, I wish I had and will be returning to do just that.
"A great translation of the epic."
The performance would have been better if there was only 1 reader. The only reader I didn't care for was the female who was very monotone and just a distraction from the story.
The inferno itself is a great source not just to hear about Hell and the different punishment people get for their sins. it is also a great source regarding the Religious politics that accrued in Dantes time and how he viewed Florance itself. most of the damn are based on real people of Dantes time so while reading or hearing be sure to look up and understand who these people were. a great story for anyone interested in the subject.
"great book, I enjoy it over and over"
i loved the book, listening to a good classic is always a great cho8ce for a long trip.
"Brilliant poetry, obsessively political"
Perhaps if Dante had anticipated that his readership would extend across the globe and into the 21st century, he would not have imagined the moral order of the Universe having so quite much to do with Florentine politics during Dante's own era.
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