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Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?
Absolutely. I can't imagine a better introduction to the seductive world of illuminated manuscripts.
What did you like best about this story?
Each manuscript has a fascinating back story, and de Hamel covers each one in detail. From a looted Nazi hoard to a dusty volume hidden inside a wall.
What does Christopher de Hamel bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?
I am easily seduced by a British accent, but de Hamel is a natural story teller. There's not the slightest hint that he's reading from a text. When he's in a library looking at the actual manuscript, you feel like you're there with him, turning the pages.
Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?
Not cry, no. But sometimes chuckle. And often just feel the wonder of such amazing books and how they survived.
Any additional comments?
Lamentably, this audiobook does not come with a supplementary Pdf containing the illustrations. And you really need to see the illustrations! So I bought the iBooks version as well (for a total cost still less than the hardcover). The iBooks version has very good quality color illustrations which you can enlarge on iPhone or iPad to view the details. Mainly, I viewed the illustrations (which are numerous) while listening to the audiobook -- an ideal way to experience this book.
I took as intended by the author whirlwind tour of some of most beautifully illuminated books in the world. He held my hand and let me peek over his shoulder as her enabled my entrance into very private experienced. His intention was for me to eventually make this and even newer journeys on my own. The trip was edifying, and ennobling. The author is a great teacher who enchants and encourages his listener to go forth to explore further with the tools of his trade that he shared with you. I could not have found a better companion to travel with and his only moods were quiet euphoria tempered with astonishment of the old. I shan’t delete this book from my audio library because I can open it up and get exhilarated after just a few moments of listening.