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  • He Knew He Was Right

  • By: Anthony Trollope
  • Narrated by: Nigel Patterson
  • Length: 30 hrs and 32 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 41
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 37
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 37

When Louis Trevelyan's young wife meets an old family acquaintance, his unreasonable jealousy of their friendship sparks a quarrel that leads to a brutal and tragic estrangement.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • A refreshingly up to date reading of a dark, psychological, Victorian tale of a marriage breakdown

  • By Kindle Customer on 26-11-16

A refreshingly up to date reading of a dark, psychological, Victorian tale of a marriage breakdown

4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 26-11-16

I have just listened to the unabridged version of He Knew He Was Right, Trollope's long, dark novel of the breakdown of a marriage, read by Nigel Patterson.

The first thing that strikes me as I listen to Patterson's narration is how much younger he sounds than I expected. Surprisingly so. His voice does not conjure up that middle-aged, bearded father figure, lugubriously expounding for the benefit of his family audience, but instead comes across as a pleasant and lively conversationalist, relating the tale to you. Given the intensity of the subject matter and psychologically deep waters he negotiates, Patterson manages to propel you through the story so that the pace does not flag while doing more than adequate justice to the drama of the unfolding catastrophe.

A quick comparison with several of the other audiobooks I have experienced revealed that he reads some 20% quicker (more words per minute) than the narrators of other "classics" to which I have listened. His pace is more akin to that I have found in audio versions of modern thrillers .

He achieves this pace while maintaining absolute clarity of diction, which makes listening both pleasant and easy.

As with the best of other narrators to whom I have listened, he manages to maintain the sense of the convoluted, many-claused Victorian sentences for the listener with careful attention to the punctuation pauses to convey the impact of the meaning. He also handles the dialogue with a sure touch, whether it be male protagonists' or females' speech he is pronouncing. I never lost the thread of the conversations as he shifted from one speaker to another and back.

Overall the experience felt refreshingly current, as befits the theme of the material and I would not hesitate to recommend this to anyone looking for a new interpretation of how to approach Victorian classics.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful