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I have always loved Norman Mailer from his first novel, The Naked and the Dead, up to and including his recent effort, The Castle in the Forest.
This forensic psychological portrait of Hitler is both deeply disturbing and highly compelling, and I find myself looking forward to a quiet moment of the day when I can sit back enjoy some time with Mailer's extraodinary prose.
I'm a big fan of the printed word and I never thought I would choose an audio book of Mailer's work to listen to. Some of his phrases are so delicious, I like to re-read and savor them again and again. Perhaps I will buy a copy of the book to keep, too, but the narrator's voice on this is so wonderful I almost forget where I am. It is deep and resonant with diabolical mockery: Just listen to his charcterization of Himmler if you want a few goosebumps with your prose.
All and all a wonderful audiobook on all accounts. Mailer is at the peak of his powers as a novelist and the choice of narrator is perfect. You absolutely must get this!
12 of 14 people found this review helpful
I was at first unimpressed and felt that the device of devils and angels was a bit clunky, but Mailer won me over. I find it, as I near the end, to be a very powerful work. The prose, at first, seem weak by Mailer's normal standards--the tone has hints of a mid-twentieth century English translation of Thomas Mann. I realized a quarter of the way through that this was certainly a choice. And a good one. The cumulative effects of the prose were stunning. As is the portrait of humanity that emerges. And the portrait of Hitler! To see and begin to comprehend the forces that molded so awful, so powerful an individual is a bit of insight that I truly appreciate. My big fear--since this clearly a first volume to a much larger work--is that Mailer will not be able to finish it, and leave us with another unfinished half masterpiece, which of course should be renamed "Hitler's Ghost."
The reader is top notch, and has a tone akin to Mailer?s, making it very pleasing to listen to.
5 of 7 people found this review helpful