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Fyodor Dostoevsky's crowning life work, The Brothers Karamazov, stands among the greatest novels in world literature. His exploration of faith, doubt, morality, and the place of suffering in life are equaled in no other work of literature, save the Bible.
The book explores the possible role of four brothers in the unresolved murder of their father, Fyodor Karamazov. At the same, it carefully explores the personalities and inclinations of the brothers themselves. Their psyches together represent the full spectrum of human nature, and continuum of faith and doubt. Ultimately this novel seeks to understand the real meaning of existence and includes much beneficial philosophical and spiritual discussion that moves the reader towards faith.
This new abridgment done exclusively for Hovel Audio by Russian Studies scholar Thomas Beyer keeps the important religious themes of the novel intact. It is an excellent way for the admirer of Dostoevsky to refresh himself, or to introduce Dostoevsky to a friend who has yet to experience the joy of reading his works.
Fyodor Dostoevsky (1821-1881) writes with a passion and keen insight of biblical grace like no other modern novelist. His works Crime and Punishment and The Idiot testify to his great skill. The Brothers Karamazov has been hailed by readers for over a century as one of the finest achievements in all of western literature.
Thomas R. Beyer is Professor of Russian at Middlebury College in Vermont. He holds three degrees in Slavic Literature including a Ph.D. from the University of Kansas. In his decades of teaching, Tom Beyer has read The Brothers Karamazov dozens of times. His abridgment of the novel for Hovel Audio shows his thorough knowledge of his subject.
- High praise for Simon Vance
This book was a pleasure to listen to because of Simon Vance's incredible reading skills. His British accent made the book very easy to listen to, and he did a creative and masterful job of differentiating the characters' voices. He read so fluently and flawlessly that it enhanced the flow of the story and made this version very clear and easy to keep track of all the characters and the story line.
Regarding the abridgment of this version, I have read the unabridged version before listening to this audiobook, and I didn't even notice or realize that this one was an abridgment until afterwards.
- I finished listening to the Brothers...
I finished listening to the Brothers Karamazov just this morning on the way to work. I have never read the book nor any other of Dostoyevsky's works, so this production was my first introduction.
I loved both the content of the book as well as the audio production of the book. One reviewer above critiqued the British-ness of the production, but from what I've read much of that is from Garnett's translation. Besides, I thought the reader added to and not detracted from the content of the book.
I have placed an order for a hardback version and I presume that I will read this work again and again. Thank you for this audio production.
- This is my favorite book, and...
This is my favorite book, and I enjoy listening to it as well as reading it. My complaints are few and not insurmountable. The reader is British, so all the Russian characters have a pretty ridiculous accent, and the reader reads quite quickly.
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- I spent a good month listening...
I spent a good month listening to this version of The Brothers Karamazov and I thoroughly enjoyed listening to every minute of it. The Brothers Karamazov is certainly one of the greatest novels of all time and Simon Vance's narration is really remarkable as he creates distinct voices for each character. The story of Dmitri, Ivan, Alyosha, and their father is always entertaining and also rich with philosophical and religious insight.
I listened to this in unison with the UC-Berkeley lectures on the book from the Existentialism in Film & Literature Podcast, and gained many observations about the book that I otherwise would've missed. The translation is superb and from what I gather they've somehow abridged the novel without leaving anything out. All in all, this is quite probably the best audiobook I've ever listened to.
- You just can't put it down!...
You just can't put it down! Shall I say, you just can't turn it off? Listening to the Brother's Karamosov is an incredible experience. Although it is an abridge version, the characters become your own relatives. Aliosha becomes a brother to you and you feel very close to him. Intensely listening to Simon Vance portray each individual character, one is amused, intrigued, and enlightened. Before I heard this novel on CD, I had a difficult time putting myself in the shoes of the Russian people at this time era. I highly recommend older homeschoolers who are studying Russian history, or who are going on a very long car trip, to listen and enjoy the Brother's Karasmosov as I have.
- I just finished listening to the...
I just finished listening to the Brothers K and really enjoyed it. It was a different experience from reading it and I felt like I was better able to differentiate and understand each character by listening to it. The story flows better with the adaptation since a lot of the back and forth dialog that bogs down all but the most patient and fearless readers was edited and summarized. Well done and a pleasure to experience. Simon Vance put in a Herculean effort to differentiate all those characters. Amazing performance on his part. Thanks!!