Dickens called David Copperfield his "favourite child," and many critics consider the novel to be one of his best depictions of childhood. Set in early Victorian England against a backdrop of great social change, Dickens acutely observed the phenomena of the Industrial Revolution and used them as the canvas on which he painted the novel. Many consider David Copperfield to be the author’s finest work.
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Delightful Dickens listening
For me, the audio edition of David Copperfield was every bit as good as a book. I think Dickens in particular lends himself well to audio interpretation. The special magic of the audio version for me is that it recalls that comforting feeling I had as child; of listening to my parents read a story and being carried away into another world.
It is impossible for me to chose a moment that was more memorable than others. David Copperfield is one continuous rollercoaster ride of joys, sorrows, hardships, heartbreak, tearful departures and joyous reunions. The cast of characters include some of the most memorable villians, noble women, cruel step-fathers and loveable unfortunates ever penned. It is first class Dickens.
Peter Batchelor is perfect for Dickens. He is an entire cast of voices. His sure control of tone, mastery of timbre and accents are a delight. Being a baritone, Batchelor's only difficulty comes when playing women and children. Uriah Heep will make anyones skin crawl. The dialogues are particularly brilliant. In these, Batchelor needs to switch between characters, finding exactly the right voice for one and then answering immediately in another. It is dazzling stuff but the virtuosity is never at the expense of the narrative. One imagines this was the way Dickens himself would have read for his friends; revelling in the characters; growling, squeeking, lisping, mimicking accents and enjoying every minute of it.
Dr. Stong is married to Anne, a very beautiful and much younger woman. Uriah Heep has contrived to cast suspicion in the mind of the doctor that his wife had taken a young lover. Deeply in love with his wife, he is willing to let the situation fall into silence in order to keep her. Never confronted, Anne is neither guilty nor innocent. It is then revealed that Heep is a villian. This provides Anne Strong with an opportunity. The words that pour forth are some of the most beautiful and deeply moving in any book I have read.
Fitting rendition of a classic