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Visions of Cody

Narrated by: Graham Parker
Categories: Fiction, Literary
5 out of 5 stars

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Summary

Hear Jack Kerouac's most radical experiment in language and storytelling - an "enormous paean" to that singular and influential figure Neal Cassady. A fusion of radical improvisation, bold reportage, and oracular voice, it is Kerouac's ultimate version of his ultimate masterpiece, On the Road. The selections featured in this recording capture Kerouac's astonishing spontaneity, a quality that inspired Allen Ginsberg to dub Visions of Cody "the most sincere and holy writing I know of our age."
©1960 Jack Kerouac; 1972 The Estate of Jack Kerouac, All Rights Reserved (P)1996 Penguin Books USA Inc.; 16 9
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Critic reviews

Winner of Publishers Weekly Listen Up Award: Best Audio of 1996, Dramatic Reading.
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What members say

Overall Ratings

  • 5 out of 5 stars
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Customer Reviews

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2 out of 5 stars
By A. Yerkes on 20-07-09

Annoying

Why pick a narrator with a British accent to read Kerouac? Why make the jazz background music so prominent and incessant? Why abridge a work whose thorough, thick description is precisely the point? I'm a fan of Kerouac and have loved other readings of his works (I'm partial to Matt Dillon's reading of On the Road,) but I find this one marred by pretentiousness and difficult to appreciate.

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13 people found this helpful

1 out of 5 stars
By T on 01-10-14

What...

This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

This is horrible, it skips every part of the actual book

very disappointed

Annoying British accent...

Would you ever listen to anything by Jack Kerouac again?

yes

What didn’t you like about Graham Parker’s performance?

everything

You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

nope

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2 people found this helpful

2 out of 5 stars
By Oakley on 31-10-11

An American Tale Told in a Strange Cockney Voice

I have to agree with an earlier review. I thought that the accent of the narrator would not bother me. I am a world traveler, but I do know that traveling the states is a different thing all together, and I find this reading to be awful and unlistenable. Very disappointing.

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4 people found this helpful

3 out of 5 stars
By Orin on 29-05-13

Performance is good, but not right

I have read Visions of Cody, I have heard audio of Kerouac reading excerpts. Kerouac has a very unique delivery and cadence that many have tried to emulate, some do it pretty well, some don't. Using his native accent, there is no attempt to imitate the sound of Kerouac reading; the issue being Kerouac's writing is essential tied to the cadence, timbre, and accent he developed being of French Canadian ancestry in Massachusetts. The accent may not be as jarring with another Kerouac book, such as Town and City or Dr. Sax, but this is not a narrative as much as a collection of visions and they just don't work with the cadence and pronunciations painted on them. If the accent isn't bad enough, there is an insistence on aura music in the background of the reading, such as pseudo-bebop jazz riffs, the required beatnik bongos, and japanese flutes wafting zen-like through the words, that just make this feel more of an attempt at performance art than the reading of a book.

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1 person found this helpful

3 out of 5 stars
By Roy on 27-12-11

Wrong voice for the material.

The narrator may be a successful "Pop Star" but his cockney accent isn't exactly the King's English nor is it the right voice for this most American of material.
It's hard to take and I foud myself dragging through this book in fits and starts only because of my dedication to Kerouac and the story.

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1 person found this helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Alan on 01-04-09

cool~~~

the best~~~

sit back and let it blow over you~~~

sit back and just dig it...really.

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4 people found this helpful

2 out of 5 stars
By kevin on 01-09-19

Kerouac deserves an American narrator and no background music please!

Love the story but the British accent ruined this for me even more than the background music. Big disappointment. Should have read other reviews.

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1 out of 5 stars
By Gae on 02-03-19

Jazz & organ music accompanied the reading--ahhh!

WHY WHY WHY? Kerouac liked jazz but do I have to listen to mixed music when hearing Kerouac's story. WHY is the narrator of this quintessential American fiction British? Want SO much to hear this story. Made 3 attempts and then finally threw in the towel. Hoping Audible will read this and release a Visions of Cody version with no music and a Kerouac style narrator. Thank you Audible. SO WONDERFUL to be back in touch with Jack!!

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