Middlemarch (Penguin Classics)

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9780140433883: Middlemarch (Penguin Classics)

In a panoramic sweep of the years leading up to the First Reform Bill of 1832, George Eliot explores nearly every subject of concern to modern life: art, religion, science, politics, self, society, human relationships. Among her characters are some of the most remarkable portraits in English literature: Dorothea Brooke, the heroine, idealistic but naive; Rosamund Vincy, beautiful and egoistic; Edward Casaubon, the dry-as-dust scholar; Tertius Lydgate, the brilliant but morally flawed physician; the passionate artist, Will Ladislaw; and Fred Vincy and Mary Garth, childhood sweethearts whose charming courtship is one of the many humorous elements in the novel's comic vein.

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Review:

The main focus in Eliot's portrait of Victorian provincial life concerns Dorothea's suppression of her youthful vitality to serve Casaubon, her cold pedant of a husband; and Doctor Lydgate, whose noble aspirations are thwarted by being shackled to a silly, selfish wife. The whole teems with characters freighted with Eliot's passions, including politics, religion and social reform. The pleasure of Juliet Stevenson's spell-binding narration is not just her own beautifully modulated voice, but the subtly different voices she gives to each of them. --Rachel Redford, The Oldie

Winner of 2012 Listen List: Outstanding Audiobook Narration Juliet Stevenson brings crisp clarity, a witty sensibility, and a charming tonal quality to Eliot's masterpiece of provincial life. Through her deft management of pacing and tone, she reveals character motivation and illuminates the many themes of the novel. But most of all she reclaims Eliot for listeners who thought they did not enjoy classics. --Rusa

Juliet Stevenson is unmatched in her narration of George Eliot's sweeping novel, which puts a lens to the fictitious English town of Middlemarch. Eliot's complex plot takes the listener into various households and lives, revealing scandal, secret longings, and unexpected ties. Stevenson's pleasant, friendly voice makes this relatively lengthy audiobook a listening delight. She enhances the narrative passages through her consistent enthusiasm and ease of language. Capturing the voices of Eliot's characters adeptly, Stevenson shifts flawlessly from gruff elderly bachelors to flirtatious young women. She displays a keen ability for a range of British accents, perfectly sorting the servants from the aristocracy and everyone in between. Stevenson's execution heralds the triumph of female spirit that Eliot embodies within this literary classic. --AudioFile

Review:

"Excellent text--one of the best editions of any 19th century novel available in paper."--Alexander S. Gourlay, University of Nebraska"Like the other World's Classics, this is a good text in a well-designed format, with adequate but unobtrusive editorial aids and introductions, biographical information, notes--at a fair price."--Robert D. Beckett, Southwest Missouri State University

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George Eliot, Rosemary Ashton (Editor)
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