I have always been an avid reader, and with time it gets harder and harder to find books, which would get anywhere near your favourites. 'The Jungle' was a REAL find, and immediately made it into my 'top 25'. It is one of the most deeply touching, powerful and memorable books I've ever read, and could not recommend it more highly.
"brilliant rendering of an old classic"
I was prompted to revisit this old gem because of the recent peanut butter scare. At least, to-day, the perpetrators of that crisis will be dealt with. It wasn't always so, as this book clearly states. This book is a difficult assignment, but the narrator clearly worked long and hard to pronounce the Lithuanian words and proper names. This is a man who brings a book to life--many narrators can't, or won't. This book is not intended for the young, or the faint of heart, as the descriptions of brutality, and the descriptions of conditions under which food was once prepared, are nearly as graphic as Edward R. Murrow's rendering of Buchenwald.
""Sad but wonderful""
I know this is a fiction but sometimes while I was listening to this audio book I can't help but to think that this is the life of an immigrant back in the 1900's. Very compelling story.
"A classic, well read."
Chicago Poverty Politics
Maybe. The story is well written, but tugs too hard on the empathy of the reader, leaving one feeling dazed and a little used at the end.
The voices! He gives each character a unique and individual voice, and he does the myriad accents in the story so well. I bought this audiobook specifically because he was the one narrating it.
I was grossed out at the descriptions of the meat packing plants, and felt pity for the poor immigrant workers in the story. Then I was whacked upside the head with SOCIALISM!
If you have to read this story for school, get this audiobook instead. Paul Boehmer's reading makes it much more dramatic and interesting. If I had to read it on my own, I never would have finished it.
"The ending was too preachy"
Opposite of Atlas Shrugged
The misery faced by the main character.
The death of his wife in childbirth
The ending was a disappointment. It was more of a sermon or a lecture.
really great book for anyone who is interested in history or anyone who eats meat. if you think the meat industry has changed much... think again.
"Quite good, but not exactly a novel"
Everything the summary says is true: The Jungle is a vivid portrait of life and death in a turn-of-the-century American meat-packing factory. And a very effective one at that. However, one thing that bothered me personally is that the characters and events in the book are basically nothing more than instruments, used by Sinclair to illustrate his points. Working conditions in the meat packing factory were horrifying? Let's have a character go through all the possible positions in the industry to illustrate this. The political system was corrupt? Our character can also witness that first hand. New immigrants fell prey to real estate scams? By all means, let's have that too. And so on. With the exception of the (excellent) first chapter and a handful of moving scenes later in the book, I felt there was no real existence to the characters, other than as illustrations. So, as a piece of social commentary, I would rate this a five-star book, but as a novel much less. It basically depends on what you're looking for: if you're looking for Dickens, this is not the book for you. But for what it is, it's a very good book, superbly read.
"Better than I remember."
I am a history teacher. The listen is as good as when I read the book 40 years ago. Fantastic, every worker in th US should listen to this book.
"Could have done without the ending"
Pretty great story by an obviously skilled author. But, the ending just felt like out of place propaganda. Change the ending and this could be a classic ;-)
"I was Outraged!"
This was written as happening at the turn of the century. it's amazing that we are still fighting some of those same battles. Greed. Greed. Greed. When will enough be enough.
"Keep Paul in the real world."
He actually makes a decent effort to pronounce Slavic, etc. names properly, and his sense of drama meshes with the fin de siecle tone of Sinclair well. Having endured him reading the first Dragonlance trilogy, I was horrified to realize he was narrating this as well, then quite pleasantly surprised when it turned out to be listenable.
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