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Frazer

United Kingdom
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  • 11
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  • 3
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  • Down and Out in Paris and London

  • By: George Orwell
  • Narrated by: Jeremy Northam
  • Length: 6 hrs and 53 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 810
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 706
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 700

An autobiographical study, Down and Out in Paris and London follows Orwell as he tramps around both Paris and London. Pawning his belongings to buy food, unemployment, drinking heavily and jostling for a place in homeless hostels are but a few of the experiences related with candour and insight in this unabridged exclusive audiobook. Orwell was arguably one of the first 'gonzo' journalists.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Superb

  • By Richard Blant on 20-07-15

A worth-while listen

Overall
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 27-10-10

Before listening to ?Down & Out? I had already ready 1984 and Animal Farm of Orwell?s other works (both excellent). This book differs from them in that it is largely autobiographical, inter-dispersed with elements of social commentary for which all of Orwells? books are famous. This biographical nature does add a certain intrigue to the book and gives it a depth and validity that would otherwise be lacking. It is at times shocking, but also quite enlightening and at times heart-warming. However, one can?t help but have the feeling that he was merely a ?tourist? in this situation and that he could at any time have got himself out of it if he so chose. In this vein, I saw the book as verging on being condescending to the very people that it tries so hard to humanise for us. He points out that tramps are normal people in every sense, but are merely down on their luck. He also points out the total ineffectiveness of the state in dealing with these people. His aim throughout is to show that ?tramps? deserve respect and help, but it is difficult to escape the knowledge of who the author is and that he is in that situation largely out of choice and not really ?Down and Out?. I don?t want to imply that it is not a good book ? it is ? it?s just that I found it more of an ?outsiders? perspective. Still, worth a listen (especially if you are a fan of his other works).

8 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • Yes Man

  • By: Danny Wallace
  • Narrated by: Danny Wallace
  • Length: 5 hrs
  • Abridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 333
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 218
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 216

Danny Wallace had been staying in. Far too much. Having been dumped by his girlfriend, he really wasn't doing the young, free and single thing very well. Instead he was avoiding people. Texting them instead of calling them. Calling them instead of meeting them. That is until one fateful date when a mystery man on a late-night bus told him to 'say yes more'. These three simple words changed Danny's life forever. Yes Man is the story of what happened when Danny decided to say YES to everything.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Life Changing audio book

  • By Paul on 11-02-09

More Maybe than Yes

Overall
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 27-10-10

Firstly, I want to say that this book is at times quite witty and well read. However, I do not agree with other reviewers that it was a 'life changing' experience or anything close. The whole book can be summed up in the mantra that the book itself states so frequently - 'say yes more'. If that advice is life changing than I must be missing something.

I did enjoy parts of the book, but other parts were slow, repetitive and fairly predictable. The fact that this is supposedly a true story gave it some interest, but ultimately I found it quite a laboured journey and one that was fairly un-satisfying in the finish. I suppose if it actually was a true story than that is why nothing more incredible happened. I was expecting something more akin to 'The Dice Man' by Luke Rhinehart (an excellent read by the way).

Anyway, to sum up - it is an OK book. (It passed the time on a long drive to Scotland in my case.) However, I would not really recommend it. Sorry Danny, but it?s a Maybe from me rather than a Yes.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful