(P)2008 Trout Lake Media
"Too many errors in this version"
I chose this reading of The Great Gatsby because (by contrast with some of the other recordings I sampled) the narrator sounded young enough to play Nick Carraway, who turns 30 in the novel.
However, I felt that Alec Sand made so many minor mistakes in the course of the recording that it became slightly irritating and I couldn't recommend it. In my opinion, there were for example some pauses in inappropriate places (e.g. between the adjective 'prominent' and the immediately following words 'well-to-do people') and some mistakes of emphasis ('ROOMS in the city' I thought should be 'rooms in the CITY', and e.g. 'God, I'm sophisticated' I thought had a false emphasis, as I thought did 'Who doesn't?' - when Nick asks who it is who doesn't want trouble - he means to ask WHO is being talked about, not to ask a rhetorical question with the emphasis on DOESN'T).
There are some straightforward mistakes, which I felt should have been spotted if there had been careful editing and correction (an extra 'even' had been added after 'don't' in 'We don't know each other very well... Even if we are cousins', and sometimes the narrator simply used the wrong word: 'irreverently' instead of 'irrelevantly', 'instance' not 'instant' and 'pre-emptory' instead of 'peremptory'!) At one point there was a total mispronunciation of a word: I can't now recall what the word was, but it was in sufficiently common usage that I found it very surprising that someone who had been chosen to record an audiobook would not be familiar with it.
"The best book ever written"
The Great Gatsby is my favourite book, I have read it at least a dozen times. The audio book just makes it more real for you. You meet Nick Carraway, from the Mid-west in the 1920s, after he is back from WW1 he feels restless with the world, so moves East to be part of the bond business. Once he moves East, you hear about this Gatbsy character, that Fitzgerald wraps up in mystery and something gorgeous. Fitzgerald created the All-American Novel and it pure perfection. He writes about the Jazz Age, the flappers and hopeless love. You follow Nick with his summer in the East and what it does to the people around him. After this, you will never find a book as perfect as this one.
I have never read the Great Gatsby or any other book by F. Scott Fitzgerald so this audio-book was a fine introduction to the work of a great author. The voice-over was superb, although lacking in diversity when portraying multiple characters. I especially liked the use of effects when the narrator received a long distance telephone call.
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