Sunday, September 5, 2010

1984 by George Orwell (Audiobook Review)

Audiobook Reviews from Audiobook-Heaven

by George Orwell
narrated by Frank Muller

Copyright: 1986 Recorded Books
Duration: 11 hours 26 minutes unabridged
Genres: classic fiction, dystopia
Filed in: Audiobook Reviews
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PUBLISHER’S SUMMARY: George Orwell depicts a gray, totalitarian world dominated by Big Brother and its vast network of agents, including the Thought Police - a world in which news is manufactured according to the authorities' will and people live tepid lives by rote. Winston Smith, a hero with no heroic qualities, longs only for truth and decency. But living in a social system in which privacy does not exist and where those with unorthodox ideas are brainwashed or put to death, he knows there is no hope for him.

AUDIOBOOK REVIEW: That George Orwell really knows how to scare the pants off a person. He wrote about angered animals revolting and taking over a farm, and now it’s an all-encompassing, all-powerful government that controls every facet of its constituents’ lives, right down to their very thoughts.

1984 was primarily written during the years 1947 and 1948 and was published in June of 1949. By the year 1989, Orwell’s novel had been translated into 65 different languages, more than any other English-language novel at that time. Throughout it’s entire publication history it has been either banned or legally challenged somewhere in the world. In 2005, Time magazine listed it in its “100 best English-language novels from 1923-2005.” It was also listed at number 6 in the “Modern Library 100 Best Novels.”

1984 follows the life of Winston Smith as he struggles to conform. We get a first-hand look at the fear and distrust that rules his every thought and action. Reading 1984 will definitely help you to appreciate your own situation, no matter how bad it may seem. And if you’re unclear on just exactly what a dystopian novel is, this is it. This is the book that defines the genre.

Frank Muller is one of my very favorite audiobook narrators, and a perfect fit for 1984. His grit and solemnity serve to augment the funerary feel of the audiobook. Muller has been a stage and television actor, but is most famous for his audiobook narration having narrated hundreds of novels. He died in 2008 after many years of complications from a motorcycle accident in 2001.

I think everyone should read 1984 at least once, and that time you were forced to read it in school doesn’t count. This is a good reminder of how things might have been, if history had turned out just a little bit different. And any audiobook narrated by Frank Muller is worth a listen.

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Special thanks to Carrollton Public Library for this review copy. Audiobook review by Steven Brandt. This audiobook review is based on the unabridged audiobook. Come back soon for more audiobook reviews from Audiobook-Heaven.

1 comment:

joni said...

I don't know about Big Brother watching but My Father has been since the day I was born. ;)

This one sounds interesting too. Maybe I should look this Orwell up! :)

Great review!