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Summary

Pickwick was a huge success. Chapman and Hall printed only 1,000 copies of the first monthly installment; at the end of serialization 40,000 copies were being printed. Pickwick had taken Britain, and later the world, by storm and had successfully launched Dickens to celebrity status. The Pickwick Club sends Mr. Pickwick and a group of friends to travel across England and to report back on the interesting things they find. In the course of their travels, they repeatedly encounter the friendly but disreputable Mr. Jingle, who becomes a continual source of trouble for all who know him. Pickwick himself is the victim of a number of misunderstandings that bring him both embarrassment and problems with the law.

Public Domain (P)2014 Trout Lake Media

What members say

Average customer ratings

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Unlistenable

What disappointed you about The Pickwick Papers?

The sound quality is abysmal. It's so dull, it's as if all the "s" sounds have been removed so I ended up straining to work out what was being said. I cannot imagine the original recording being this bad so I can only assume it's due to over zealous use of compression software.
"Never mind the quality, feel the width."

What other book might you compare The Pickwick Papers to, and why?

Anything else by Dickens I suppose.

Any additional comments?

I'm not at liberty to judge the book or the narrator, having only heard about fifteen minutes of it but I assume it is first class, like most of Dickens' other work. The whole thing was rendered useless to me due to the terrible audio quality.

9 of 9 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars

Horrible narration

Would you try another book written by Charles Dickens or narrated by Peter Batchelor?

I'd try more Dickens but nothing else by Peter Batchelor

What didn’t you like about Peter Batchelor’s performance?

There was no enthusiasm in the narrative parts - he might as well have been reading the phone book - and no subtlety in his representation of the different characters' dialogue. His differentiation between them was clumsy caricature. I gave up listening after the first few chapters

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Charles Dickens , Excellent as always!

No-one can really know the meaning of a great read until they've read Charles Dickens!
Always entertaining his varied plotlines containing such an assortment of characters who you get the opportunity to know so well that when it comes to the closing of his tales you feel reluctant to turnover that last page...
I only hope that younger readers will take the time to read a Charles Dickens novel & give themselves the chance to see what 'Literary Genius' means...

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Great book and narration

A wonderful story, one of the best Dickens and superb narration. The crumpet passage was priceless.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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As you would expect

Great story, superbly written and well narrated.
Good stuff, exactly what you would expect from a man like Charles Dickens, you know the craic.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Downloaded on whim and really glad I did!

LOVED this! Such a classic, interesting to think about Victorian society reading it in stages, I guess it was the 'Game of Thrones' (insert current 'must see' TV here) of its time! I can just imagine everyone talking about Pickwick's latest exploits. Brilliant fun.

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Classic very entertaining.

Great listening for a walk or bedtime.
Narrator on the whole pretty good, just a couple of characters irritating.
would recommend.

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  • d op
  • 11-08-14

A true classic! Dicken's characters come alive.

Would you listen to The Pickwick Papers again? Why?

Yes, I loved it, it is hysterical in parts..and I found myself wiping away tears on occasions. I love Dicken's Characters..I am Sorry this 29 hour book ended.

Who was your favorite character and why?

It real is hard to separate them, as they all play off of each other..But I loved Mr.Pickwick, Sam and of course Mr. "V"eller.

Have you listened to any of Peter Batchelor’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

No, but I will, he did a fantastic job.

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

Pickwick in debtor's prison, and when Sam would not leave MR. P

Any additional comments?

I love period pieces and the classics, there were a couple of times it got a bit dry, but picked up to fantastic hilarity in the next chapter. I LOVED Sam Weller' s tongue in cheek humor, you felt at times that he was stepping out of the novel just to say the quips to you, then stepped back in and continued on with his part. I feel this would be tough for a novice reader to take on, it is a hard read due to being written in many parts with the English that was traditionally used in the working class. Again, I loved it, I hope you will too.

14 of 14 people found this review helpful

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  • Jennifer Grannis
  • 16-06-15

amazing performance

This book has long been gap in my Dickens library... and would have been ponderous to read & keep the variety of recurring minor characters straight... but the reader was so remarkably able to create individual personalities that it was a much richer experience. .. such a delightful cast of characters, and so informative of Dickens' sensibilities. .. delightful!

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

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  • RDP
  • 07-08-16

Almost stopped reading it at first... wow

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Almost stopped reading it at first... wow what a mistake it would have been... it took me a couple of chapters to get into the book, but once I did, I was hooked. Mr Pickwick was such a character.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Sam Weller. Loyal to a fault and resourceful as few.

Which character – as performed by Peter Batchelor – was your favorite?

Again, Sam Weller.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

I laughed out loud numerous times and chuckled repeatedly.

Any additional comments?

Mr. Batchelor is a gifted interpreter of all of the characters and as such I cannot imagine anyone else reading Mr. Dickens' works but h.im

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • LARRYT
  • 22-07-16

This is by far, Dickens at his BEST

Would you consider the audio edition of The Pickwick Papers to be better than the print version?

Yes. Especially read by Peter Bachelor.

Who was your favorite character and why?

How to choose?? Sam Weller.

What about Peter Batchelor’s performance did you like?

I am about to order all books narrated by Peter Bachelor. He makes the characters come alive !!

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes but was too long to even attempt. Hated to stop. Was very upset when it was over.

Any additional comments?

If you think Charles Dickens is all "dark and morose" please give The Pickwick Papers a try. This is a great read. (or should I say, "listen") Bravo, Peter Bachelor !!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • John Hohstadt
  • 01-06-16

Excellent narrator

Very interesting, amusing and engaging story. Made even more interesting by Mr Batchelor's narration. He does an excellent job of doing all the various voices. Such a good job that I will seek out books narrated by him in the future.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • ANNE-MARIE BURKE BREWSTER
  • 12-03-16

hilarious

you are taken to other world with a cohoblopot of personalities. allowing the use of your imagination in the hectic present.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Mom
  • 21-06-18

Very Excellent production !

Highly recommend this enjoyable audio book of such a wonderful Dickens classic. Laugh out loud funny in many pkaces. The narrator
Peter Batchelor does a fantastic job. His smooth, agile delivery of the Many characters is a joy. The female voices not the best, but it is still all enjoyable. If you want to see a first rate video version of the book, the 1985 BBC
Series available in Amazon Prime site is very fun. I t does skip some exteraneous parts but the true heart of the book is faithfully performed. I listened to chapters then watched an episode of the series and enhanced my admiration for Mr Batchelor's enormous success !

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  • Christopher Martin
  • 21-05-18

Great book.

Love it. Love it. Love it.Love it.Love it.Love it. Good book. Great book.! ! !

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  • I. B. Shopin
  • 28-04-18

I loved these characters

I was so sorry to say goodbye to the characters in the Pickwick Papers. They seemed like old friends. I know that I will return to them again and again for smiles and laughter. Peter Batchelor is a favorite, and I enjoy his narration very much.

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  • Skyhawk
  • 16-03-18

Absolutely marvelous in every way!

My father introduced my brothers and myself to Dickens by reading us David Copperfield when we very young. I read Oliver Twist and Great Expectations in school. Since then, I have read and reread at least nine other Dickens novels, but somehow I never got to Pickwick.

Perhaps it is because I first met the author in spoken form, or perhaps because the books were originally written in serial form to be read aloud to the largely illiterate public, but I find it a marvelous treat to listen to the books. I have them also as books and on my Kindle, to see the Phiz illustrations and catch up on points hard to hear due mostly to particularly idiomatic dialect.

The book, written when Dickens was in his early twenties, is undoubtedly a work of comic genius. Already he is a master storyteller with great empathy for the poor and downtrodden. Peter Batchelor brings it spectacularly to life with a staggering array of voices and tones, a truly astonishing performance.

Listening to this audiobook is a time-traveling vacation and I think we can all use a taste of it to see how much has changed and how so much of today’s political turmoil is nothing new at all.