(P)2004 NAXOS AudioBooks Ltd.
Fantastic reading by Jim Norton. Norton is able to evoke a sense of time and place in his reading by giving each of the characters an Irish (or an English accent where appropriate) accent. The reading pace is steady and characters are brought to life in Norton's rendering of the Dubliners in this audio book.
I bought my first copy of Dubliners at Byrne?s Bookstore in O?Connell Street Dungarvan thirty years ago read and re-read the stories between serving on the counter at the Village Shop in Stradbally Co. Waterford where I was working and sitting down at The Cove and thought it was the best thing I?d ever read. I then moved on to Portrait of the Artist and Ulysses though my early years at college and came to regard the works of Joyce as being central to my enjoyment of literature.
Picking up the book again, with a world of experience and perhaps a totally different perspective - this is still the best thing I?ve ever read.
The epiphanies work as they all did previously. The distance of time and experience meant a more objective and objectified reading on this occasion and yet I was immediately touched by the beauty of the writing, the breadth of Joyce?s emotional scope, his empathy will all types, ages and descriptions of characters and the depth of the noises, colours, smells and voices that drift up from the page.
The modern perspective that we can now bring to The Sisters belie the fact that this story is over a hundred years old and Church and laity now have a completely different relationship and perspective one to the other.
An Encounter is genuinely chilling, based entirely on what is not said as much as what is laid out in front of us.....and on and on it goes....A Mother rings as to in the 2010 ?Live and Unsigned? tour as it does on the Grafton Street stage....and Gabriel Conroy is everyman in relation to The Dead.
If you?ve read this before then you?ll enjoy it doubly on re-reading it - if you?ve never read Dubliners before then this is the treat of a lifetime.
No reader of James Joyce rivals the integrity and intelligence of Jim Norton. His performances make you wonder why anyone else should tackle a new recording. The Dubliners set offers the Norton trademark of coolness and precision of narrative, and a range of convincing voices in dialogue. I've been reading James Joyce off the page for 45 years, but Norton's readings always bring out new nuances and tones.
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