'In a Nutshell', the new audiobook series from Naxos AudioBooks, continues with a fascinating history of Tibet.
Part of China for many years, yet with a clearly distinctive culture (with the central devotion of its people being to Buddhism and the Dalai Lama), Tibet has a unique character in the panoply of world nations. Here we have an independent view of its history and the customs and beliefs of its people - and a commentary on the current situation.
A comprehensive and concise snapshot of the country of Tibet. Anyone traveling to this mysterious and remote land, "at the roof of the world," would benefit from the thorough descriptions of geography and geology, flora and fauna, and the nation's political and religious strife. The production begins with poignant and atmospheric percussion and sacred chanting by the Tibetan Sherab Ling Monks, then flows to vivid descriptions of the harsh environment and climate, extreme altitudes, diet, customs, and dress. David Rintoul's modulated narrative pinpoints Tibet's contrasts and beauty with audible awe as he marvels at its many surprises. This sympathetic portrait of the plight of the Tibetan people and the Dalai Lama is underscored by Rintoul's gentle vocal elegance.
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Good, but not great.
- jeremy barker