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Gerard Manley Hopkins [Abridged, Audiobook] [Audio CD]

Gerard Manley Hopkins
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
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Book Description

1 Sep 2008
A collection of the best-known poems by Gerard Manley Hopkins (1844-1889). One of the Victorian era's greatest writers, Hopkins' reputation has continued to grow since his death.

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Product details

  • Audio CD: 1 pages
  • Publisher: Naxos AudioBooks; Unabridged edition (1 Sep 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 962634900X
  • ISBN-13: 978-9626349007
  • Product Dimensions: 14.2 x 1 x 12.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 143,449 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

A graduate of the Old Vic Theatre School in Bristol, England, Jeremy Northam has played many roles, including that of Saint Thomas More in Showtime's 'The Tudors'. The son of two professors, he is perfectly cast to read a poet whose best-loved works include 'That Nature is a Heraclitean Fire and the comfort of the Resurrection.' Difficult lines come trippingly off his tongue. This, for instance from 'Windhover': 'daylight's dauphin, dapple-dawn-drawn Falcon . . .' There are 38 poems, each beautifully wrought. I'm a middlebrow, though, and favor a prose setting for poetry. I need context, and I need to come up for air. The only way I could draw nectar from these flowers was to pick one poem and play it over and over again. --AudioFile 2008

To read Hopkins's poetry aloud, you have to be sensitive to all his chiming alliteration, assonance and idiosyncratic rhythm, and yet allow the poet's own voice to be heard. Jeremy Northam does just that, giving the listener the essence of Hopkins: the 'dearest freshness deep down things'. --Rachel Redford, The Observer

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant: moody and magical 3 Mar 2009
The first of 'The Great Poets' series by Naxos AudioBooks that I listened to, and my still favourite (so far)!
I was introduced to his poetry many years ago whilst still at school, and it's great to hear it come to life in this recording. Jeremy Northam's voice is perfect for the rhythm and rhyme of Gerard Manley Hopkins' poetry. The words and atmosphere keep your attention and spark your imagination. Tracks 6 ('God's Grandeur') to 13 ('Pied Beauty') work particularly well, combining both pace and passion. I was also relieved that 'No worst, there is none' was done justice.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A missed opportunity. 26 May 2013
Verified Purchase
It's impossible to recommend this disc. Only 62 minutes long, incomprehensibly, it offers only an abridged version of The Deutschland: leaving out the entire, magnificent account of the shipwreck! Since this represents the greatest of Hopkins's poetry, there's not much point in buying this ill-conceived anthology. Unfortunately, the wonderful readings made by Argo for the British Council, with a superlative account of The Deutschland by Michael Redgrave, is now unavailable. Jeremy Northam reads well enough, albeit sometimes misunderstanding Hopkins's sense, but there is no magic here: it's all a bit tepid and monotonous. Hopkins deserves a reader with a much stronger sense of the rich variety of the drama and music of the verse. If not a latter-day Redgrave, then a latter-day Burton....
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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Poetry Almost Lost 28 Mar 2012
Gerard Manley Hopkins was a Jesuit priest who kept thinking and writing poems until he died without his works seeing the light of day in publications. Actor Jeremy Northam does an excellent job of reading Hopkins, even though this task must not have been easy. The Hopkins poetry sounds as if the author had the advantage of being ignorant of or able to ignore traditional ways of writing poems. This allowed him to invent new rhythms, use repeated lines, introduce line-ending rhyming words that could slip by unnoticed and present an elevated density of thought as if he had an intense case of logorrhea. What did he think about? He used the words "God" and "Christ" about as often as a non-priest might. He focused on almost everything else. He saw nature as a "dappled world," something worth noting by artists and triggering wonder if his thoughts anticipated modern ones that stress the digital character of almost everything around, including ourselves. The original way Hopkins wrote poetry came to the attention of Dylan Thomas and it shows. This is wonderful, challenging poetry, easy to enjoy but difficult to analyze.
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Amazon.com: 5.0 out of 5 stars  2 reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful 1 Feb 2011
By Michael Brown - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
I am a great admirer of Hopkins and his poetry so the only really important thing to say is that the reader has a beautiful, mellifluous voice and gives all the drama and pathos to the poems that Hopkins would want and which are sadly often left out to the passive reader.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Poetry Almost Lost 28 Mar 2012
By Ben J Korgen - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
Gerard Manley Hopkins was a Jesuit priest who kept thinking and writing poems until he died without his works seeing the light of day in publications. Actor Jeremy Northam does an excellent job of reading Hopkins, even though this task must not have been easy. The Hopkins poetry sounds as if the author had the advantage of being ignorant of or able to ignore traditional ways of writing poems. This allowed him to invent new rhythms, use repeated lines, introduce line-ending rhyming words that could slip by unnoticed and present an elevated density of thought as if he had an intense case of logorrhea. What did he think about? He used the words "God" and "Christ" about as often as a non-priest might. He focused on almost everything else. He saw nature as a "dappled world," something worth noting by artists and triggering wonder if his thoughts anticipated modern ones that stress the digital character of almost everything around, including ourselves. The original way Hopkins wrote poetry came to the attention of Dylan Thomas and it shows. This is wonderful, challenging poetry, easy to enjoy but difficult to analyze.
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