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Chris Lilly

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  • 57
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  • 69
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A Reading of Shakespeare to Make Shakespeare Important to Anyone

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 11-09-19

Lucid, witty, allusive, and thoroughly compelling. The very best critical appraisal of a playwright I love, but others don't for various solid reasons, that I have ever encountered.

Land's Edge cover art

The Aussie Coast

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 23-11-16

Beautiful, evocative, tough, poetic analysis of the relationship between the writer and the coast. The Australianisms are lovely, and that's not an everyday occurrence. The reader is appropriately laconic, because Aussies don't do overwrought, but the subject and the language is lyrical and gorgeous.

Profound, elegant, beautiful

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 22-07-15

This is a brilliant, brilliant story; a moral fable told through the eyes of Scout Finch, and her warmth and immediacy and powerful sense of right and wrong, a sense with which she has been imbued by her father Atticus, is the pivot on which an everyday story of Southern bigotry balances. And the effort to understand and value almost all the bigots is one of the key graces of the book.

Sissy Spacek animates Scout and the other characters, particularly Dill, beautifully. She seems less assured dealing with the long narrative sequences told by Scout as an adult, but they are less well suited to dramatic presentation than the dialogue. Ms. Spacek is Texan, which may mean that her Alabaman accent was off, but I wouldn't know. It sounded fine to me.

4 people found this helpful

Warm and Friendly Reading of a Great Novel

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
3 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 11-05-15

I am a great admirer of Jenny Agutter as an actor, and get great pleasure from listening to her warm, friendly English posh voice. However, there is an unsettling inaccuracy of diction, a failure to hit terminal 'T's that make this a lesser reading of Austen than Juliet Stephenson's, which is faultless.

2 people found this helpful

Jane and Juliet at Their Best.

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 11-05-15

"Emma" is perhaps the most complex of the Austen novels, with a big cast, a nuanced moral complex, and a heroine who is simultaneously warm, generous, well-intentioned, and more than a bit of a prune. Austen constantly revises the readers/listeners opinion of her.

Juliet Stephenson is magnificent. Exquisitely delineated characters, pitch-perfect reading, and I enjoyed her beautifully rendered characterisation of Miss Bates and Mrs. Elton very much - they're funny, which isn't something one can say of Mr. Knightly, for instance.

Austen at her best, and brilliantly performed. I quite liked this.

Eleven Brilliant Sounds On A Twelve Note Scale.

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 27-02-15

I was absolutely engrossed by Widmerpool's machinations in the Second World War, I loved the sense of punctured fate that the survivors of the conflict experienced, I was wrapt by the literary shenanigans, and Pamela Flitton is an effortlessly drawn monster. Then along comes book twelve. What's that about? Powell suddenly spends chapters talking about mysticism and cult life as though it matters, and as though he understands it. Stick with Old Boy's Dinners and literary back-stabbing Anthony. That said, eleven out of twelve ain't bad.

1 person found this helpful

Hard Boiled As A Ten Minute Egg.

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 27-02-15

Lots of people try to reproduce Chandler's baroque tough-guy prose. For my money, Ray Porter has succeeded far better than most. I'm off to listen to "Farewell My Lovely" while I'm still in the mood. Highly recommended.

15 people found this helpful

Volumes 4-6 of the Twelve volume sequence

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 06-02-15

Excellent acting, excellent characterisation. If the teeny social world that the books inhabit has become interesting, or if Powell's orotund but stunning prose has gripped you in the first three volumes, these are unmissable. "Casanova's Chinese Restaurant" deals with issues like infant mortality and the Spanish Civil War that Powell can't manage. Then "The Kindly Ones" locates the shambles left by the First War, and the encroaching terror of the Second War, and it's just brilliant. And you can't read six until you've read five. Difficult. Half way there.

Superb Autobiography, superb audiobook.

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 30-01-15

Absolutely exquisite auto-biography. It's the story of healing from grief and loss, through the good graces of nature, landscape, and a hawk called Mabel. Interwoven with Helen MacDonald's own story is the weird life and writing of T. H. White, particularly his book 'The Goshawk', telling the sorry story of his attempt to 'man' a Goshawk. His healing through writing is an essential part of her story. It's poetic, honest, wears its knowledge very lightly, and I loved it. As narrated (really well) by Helen MacDonald herself, the warmth and intimacy of a fine book is enhanced in the audio version. On its own, this is a great advertisement for audio books.

14 people found this helpful

Cornerstone of Children's Literature

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 29-01-15

This is a fine, slightly off-kilter performance of a fine, slightly off-kilter set of books. Cathy Dobson has a very warm and confiding style, with an old fashioned quality that fits the Edwardian stories. She also reads with a strange catch in her voice, a little hesitation that was at first irritating, but became very engaging. And what tremendous stories! Constantly surprising, constantly inventive, constantly forcing its audience to question, without ever being preachy - whenever there's the possibility of preaching, they remember it's been a long time since dinner, and scoot off home for mutton fritters(!?!). The Lamb, and the petting of the Lamb, is nauseating, but the story with the grown-up Lamb recontextualises even that character.

6 people found this helpful