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Kamil Arakeljan

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  • helpful votes
  • 5
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  • War and Peace, Volume 1

  • By: Leo Tolstoy
  • Narrated by: Neville Jason
  • Length: 30 hrs and 19 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 601
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 430
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 433

War and Peace is one of the greatest monuments in world literature. Set against the dramatic backdrop of the Napoleonic Wars, it examines the relationship between the individual and the relentless march of history. Here are the universal themes of love and hate, ambition and despair, youth and age, expressed with a swirling vitality which makes the book as accessible today as it was when it was first published in 1869.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • An epic reading

  • By Francis on 01-05-07

The Timeless Masterpiece

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

Reviewed: 30-11-18

This novel is so vast that writing a short review might seem detrimental to Tolstoy. But I am no writer myself, and this book already has such a reputation to it that not much need to be said. I loved the characters from the get go.

The name War and Peace is actually very fitting. Because it is constant fight between the peaceful parts of story where characters meet, fall in love, talk behind the backs, betray, party and then war part filled with details description of certain Napoleonic fights, life of a soldier and politics behind the scenes. I just can’t wrap my head around the fact that Tolstoy managed to create multiple storylines for multiple characters whilst all being intertwined constantly and not go mad.

Attention to the detail is incredible, from characters to locations description is just breath-taking. You will laugh, cry, get angry and still want more. It’s not only great novel but it can serve as a historic book too. It taught me a lot about Napoleonic wars, state of aristocracy and of the poor back then.

The narrator Neville Jason is just wonderful, he really gives a life to this story. The only thing I could complain a bit is that Tolstoy gets carried away with his philosophical theories about certain life’s matters, which are interesting but sometimes too difficult to understand and can drag for bit too long. Get the both parts at the same time and listen to it. It’s truly a masterpiece and one of those books you need to read/listen to before you die.

  • Dead Souls

  • By: Nikolai Gogol, Constance Garnett - translator
  • Narrated by: Nicholas Boulton
  • Length: 14 hrs and 54 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 31
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 27
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 27

Gogol's great Russian classic is the Pickwick Papers of Russian literature. It takes a sharp but humorous look at life in all its strata but especially the devious complexities in Russia, with its landowners and serfs. We are introduced to Chichikov, a businessman who, in order to trick the tax authorities, buys up dead 'souls', or serfs, whose names still appear on the government census. Despite being a dealer in phantom crimes and paper ghosts, he is the most beguiling of Gogol's characters.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A perfect rendition.

  • By Sophie on 25-09-18

The life of 19th century entrepreneur

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

Reviewed: 13-11-18

First of all, I have bit of a soft spot for Russian classical literature, maybe because I still haven’t read one bad book from this genre. Second of all, Dead Souls is yet another stunning classic. The story revolves around character named Pavel Ivanovich Chichikov who perfectly fits description of modern day entrepreneur except he lived in different time of our history. He goes from town to town, trying to execute his master business plan and meets un-ending variety of characters. And this is where the biggest strength of Gogol and this book lies.

The unimaginable attention to detail Gogol gives to every person, town, or anything mentioned makes it very easy to use your imagination and construct this places in your mind and start living the story like you were there. The character stereotypes he portrays are so true that I cannot fathom out how he could know all of this back in 19th century. After you read this book you will come to understanding that we as people haven’t changed that much in last 200 years. All character traits and stereotypes are the same today. We have advanced technologically but not as humans. Our mindsets are still the same. If you let it, this book will teach you a lot about how people behave and how to deal with it.

For some people these constant descriptions of details might get boring after a while, and story can get confusing as a result. But, I have enjoyed everything thoroughly. And yes, the book is missing a lot of pages in second part and ends mid-sentence. The usual explanation is that Gogol went mad and tried to destroy this book. However, me personally I like the theory that he didn’t go mad but quite the opposite. That he did it all on purpose to fit the overall theme of the book which I don’t want to spoil. The audibook narrator Nicholas Boulton is simply amazing. He handles all the different characters perfectly. So, get this audiobook and indulge in it, enjoy every second.

  • Waiting for Godot

  • By: Samuel Beckett
  • Narrated by: Sean Barrett, David Burke, Terence Rigby, and others
  • Length: 2 hrs and 2 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 111
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 76
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 75

There is now no doubt that not only is Waiting for Godot the outstanding play of the 20th century, but it is also Samuel Beckett's masterpiece. Yet it is both a popular text to be studied at school and an enigma. The scene is a country road. There is a solitary tree. It is evening. Two tramp-like figures, Vladimir and Estragon, exchange words. Pull off boots. Munch a root vegetable. Two other curious characters enter. And a boy. Time passes. It is all strange yet familiar.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • In a word, Brilliant

  • By Gryfynn on 21-01-17

Bizarre

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

Reviewed: 13-01-18

It is hard to review Waiting for Godot as it is the most bizarre, utterly absurd title I have listened to. Ever since we read abstract of it in the school all those years ago, I wanted to read the whole thing but never got around to actually doing it. Audiobook seemed like the perfect scenario to finally getting to know why is this piece of art held in high esteem by many.

After listening to the first 10 minutes, I was totally ready to turn it off, ask for refund and forget about it. It was disorienting and nothing made sense. However I kept on listening just for sake of it. After another 10 minutes however, I did not need to force myself anymore because I was completely hooked and I did not understand why.

As the story progresses It is not making any more sense but confusing you more and more. You have literally no idea what is actually going on, but somewhat it makes you feel that you just cant stop listening and want more. Ending does not help at all, it does not tie anything up.

After I was done with it, I have started to reflect on what I just heard and then it all clicked.

The genius of this title is that it is intentionally written in the way of confusing you and making you go mad. For example, author throws in this "bones" of moments when it seems that the story shows some progress and starts to make some sense, only to confuse you even more and screw anything you thought you understand a moment later. It is a trap. There is no "making sense of it" here, because everything makes sense and nothing makes sense at the same time. That is the best way I can describe this book.

Performance wise It is sometimes hit and miss. It is made like staged play so you hear characters make noises which represents what are they doing at the moment. The narrators are something trying too hard to making too dramatic which sometimes makes it hard to understand them through all those noises.


Overall, I highly recommend this absurdity, go in with open mind and enjoy it.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • The X-Files: Cold Cases

  • By: Joe Harris, Chris Carter, Dirk Maggs - adaptation
  • Narrated by: David Duchovny, Gillian Anderson, Mitch Pileggi, and others
  • Length: 4 hrs and 4 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 1,264
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,154
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 1,161

Based upon the graphic novels by Joe Harris - with creative direction from series creator Chris Carter - and adapted specifically for the audio format by aural auteur Dirk Maggs ( The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, Alien: Out of the Shadows), Cold Cases marks yet another thrilling addition to the pantheon of X-Files stories. Featuring a mind-blowing and otherworldly soundscape of liquefying aliens, hissing creatures, and humming spacecraft, listeners get to experience the duo's investigations like never before.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • oh, how I missed it.

  • By evgenia on 18-07-17

#Incredible

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

Reviewed: 31-08-17

Where does The X-Files: Cold Cases rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

It is hard to describe to the other book I have listened too. The production value alone is no match to anything I have experienced before. The voice actors, sound effect,music all work closely together to deliver what might be the perfect audio book experience.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Mulder,Scully, Kraychuk, Ukrainian sheriff - these were definitely the stand-out of the cast. They have delivered highly professional performance with truthful representation of characters feelings,emotions, aspects.

What does the narrators bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

Well there is no narrator, its better to describe as watching a movie without the image, which might sound weird but trust me it is great

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

Oh yes, and many. But I do not intend on spoiling anything here.

Any additional comments?

The story could have presented more clearly with many moments of confusion what is actually going on( which might be authors intend). The length clocking at around 4 hours is not to sneeze at, I would definitely liked bit more.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Sword of Destiny

  • The best-selling stories that inspired the hit game The Witcher
  • By: Andrzej Sapkowski
  • Narrated by: Peter Kenny
  • Length: 12 hrs and 46 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 1,269
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 1,189
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,183

Geralt is a witcher, a man whose magic powers, enhanced by long training and a mysterious elixir, have made him a brilliant fighter and a merciless assassin. Yet he is no ordinary murderer: his targets are the multifarious monsters and vile fiends that ravage the land and attack the innocent. He roams the country seeking assignments but gradually comes to realise that while some of his quarry are unremittingly vile, vicious grotesques, others are the victims of sin, evil or simple naivety.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • The sword of destiny has two blades...

  • By Lea on 08-12-15

Nothing short of stunning story and narrator

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

Reviewed: 21-08-17

This is my second Witcher book (after Last Wish). I have played Witcher 3( greatest game of all time) and was inclined to know more about the Witcher universe. This book is actually prequel to the "Last Wish" so you need listen to this definetely after last wish. The book is a collection of stories with the witcher "Geralt of Rivia" being the main character of all.

All of the stories are great, with interesting plot and characters. However the very last one is utterly amazing, with twists and turns being thrown at you, making you not understand anything that is going on, but it all ties up rather nicely at the very end and oh my what an ending it was. It made me even more stoked for next installments. I have bought them all already :D

Narrator Peter Kenny is spectacular at his job. Doing male and female, young and old, even monsters voices with ease. I can't imagine anyone else narrating. He made me fall in love with audiobooks which to be frank, I was
sceptical at first. But not anymore.

OK, I think it is pretty clear how I feel about this audiobook- 10/10