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Sense and Sensibility is my one of my most cherished Jane Austen novels. This is the classic unabridged story of the Dashwood sisters: how their half-brother throws them out of their family home soon after their father dies, how Marianne’s heart gets broken by Willoughby’s cruel rejection, and how Elinor conceals her own heartbreak when the love of her life is engaged to be married to someone else. And then there is my personal favorite Austen hero, the understated yet constant force that is Colonial Brandon (sigh).
I was thrilled to see Alison Larkin finally narrate Sense and Sensibility because she has a way of conveying Jane’s dry wit like no other. Jane Austen wrote most of her novels as satire and no one conveys it better than Alison. Her narration brings to life these beloved characters with her smooth undertones and subtle nuances. As she does with all of her narrations, Alison uses differing voices for all characters, and changes up the tempo during the most exciting parts of the story.
As an added bonus, this version of the audiobook includes a short excerpt from Jane and Me: My Austen Heritage by Caroline Jane Knight, Jane Austen's 5th great grandniece. I loved hearing how Caroline was embarrassed to read some of Jane’s letters because they included too much personal information. I couldn’t help but smile.
Simply put, I highly recommend this audiobook to anyone – especially those who love a good Jane Austen novel!
There is no point in commenting on Jane Austen's work. It is a classic and either a reader/listener likes her work or doesn't.
Alison Larkin's narration fits Jane Austen's Sense and Sensibility perfectly. Larkin isn't just speaking or reading the book; She is performing it. She is able to make subtle changes to her voice that add depth to the narration and bring the many characters to life. For instance, Willoughby sounds like a carefree fop, Elinor comes off as a serious, deep thinking young woman, Marianne sounds young and suitably passionate, and so on. The narration welcomes the listener into the book to get lost in the pages. Most readers will know the story, so the pleasure is definitely in the performance and I enjoyed the performance very much.
This book was given to me for free at my request and I provided this voluntary review.
Where does Sense and Sensibility rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?
An utterly authentic interpretation - very real - you feel like you're there with an Alison Larkin Austen narration
Who was your favorite character and why?
Maryanne because she changes and is at times annoying but endearing at the same time. She learns a lot as the book progresses.
Which scene did you most enjoy?
All of them, but of course the scene at the end has to be one of the best in literature. I also really enjoyed the excerpt from Jane and Me by Austen's great niece. What a treat!
Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?
I would if I could.
Any additional comments?
I loved Alison Larkin's narration of Emma and Pride and Prejudice too. This is a wonderful performance once again. Simply the best.