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Sons and Lovers (Classic Fiction) Audio CD – Abridged, Audiobook


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Product details

  • Audio CD: 4 pages
  • Publisher: Naxos AudioBooks; Abridged edition edition (2 Jun. 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9626348720
  • ISBN-13: 978-9626348727
  • Product Dimensions: 12.4 x 2.4 x 14.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (65 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 515,077 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Review

The jaunty miner who proud Mrs Morel married has become a boorish drunk, so she devotes herself to her sons, particularly Paul. The suppressed sexuality of this intense relationship prevents Paul from choosing a wife. The mute yearning of the dark and brooding Miriam eventually repels him, nor can he give himself wholly to the over-demanding Clara. The cloying love between mother and son borders on the repellent, but the sympathetic narration rescues it, making the web of emotions startlingly real. The narrator is a Nottingham man and his presentation of the dialect is skilful. Mr Morel gains in humanity, emerging as emotionally wounded as his wife. --Rachel Redford

Slack s reading of Lawrence s classic novel portrays, with clarity, the class differences between Walter Morel and his wife, Gertrude, in the tough world of coal mining. Gertrude s middle-class background and her husband s working-class origins are clearly indicated in Slack s varied accents and tones. But it is the mother s relationship with her children, especially William, the eldest, and Paul, after William s death, that is most lyrically and elegiacally relayed. Slack s rendering of Paul s obsessions and preoccupations is sympathetically handled. Gertrude s aloofness is icily portrayed. Walter, despite his drunkenness and coarseness, seems far more sympathetic in audio. Paul s relationship with Miriam Leivers is pivotal, and the tensions that their relationship causes between Gertrude and her favorite son are central to the story. Slack underscores her maternal jealousy, showing it in sharp contrast to Gertrude s cold manner with her husband. Lawrence s central themes are heightened through the marvelous British-laced reading. --Mary McCay, Booklist

Book Description

Set in 1900s, this is a lushly descriptive and highly autobiographical portrayal of a young man growing up in class-divided Nottingham --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Heather on 22 May 2011
Format: Paperback
This is one of those books that I like to re-read every few years, and every time I find something new and wonderful in it. Although inspired by Lawrence's own early experiences, and the chief focus of the novel is the growth of Paul Morel, the viewpoint shifts throughout - so the characters and their relationships are always changing, and are never finally defined. On my most recent reading I was especially moved by the mother, Gertrude, and the sadness of her unfulfilled life.

There are two important deaths in Sons and Lovers: Lawrence writes them starkly and simply and without sentiment. And he shows how grief can almost kill a person.

The setting of the novel is the Nottinghamshire mining village where Lawrence grew up, and you will never read a truer or more vivid account of early 20th century working class life, anywhere.

This Penguin edition of Sons and Lovers has an excellent introduction by Blake Morrison, with some really interesting insights into the drafting and editing, including the input of Jessie Chambers (Miriam in the novel), Lawrence's wife Frieda and editor Edward Garnett.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Roman Clodia TOP 100 REVIEWER on 15 Mar. 2010
Format: Paperback
This was the first Lawrence I ever read and so still reminds me of being 16,reading in the back garden of my parent's home... but even beyond the lovely memories it's still one of my favourites.

Passionate and enthralling, it shows Lawrence's skills at dissecting the relationships that bind men and women, and not just in a sexual sense. This is visceral and emotional, the kind of book that stops you in your tracks and makes you think 'yes, that's how life it'. Wonderful stuff and one of the most autobiographical of Lawrence's novels.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Ryan N. on 19 Jun. 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Perhaps Lawrence's masterpiece, this is one of the best novels I have ever read. Through Paul Morel, we get to see so many aspects of life: family, psychology, love, art and everything in between. Having heard bad things about some of his other works (I'm almost willing to fall out with friends over this!) my expectations were not too high but I can safely say Lawrence far exceeded them. Perhaps what I was least prepared for was for it to be such a touching book. Coming from a coal mining family not too far removed from the Morels, I can see the origins of my own family throughout the book. If you haven't already read the book, please be careful about spoilers from this point on!

Lawrence based the book on his own upbringing and, like many great bildungsromans, one of the central ideas is the protagonist's attempts to go 'into the world'. Unfortunately, this is complicated by his stormy family life, the death of his brother and his borderline suffocating relationship with his mother, Gertrude. Gertrude remains a spectre throughout the novel, becoming closer with Paul until their bond begins to overshadow everything else in his life. She is a sympathetic figure, a portrait of a life sadly wasted, but she also threatens Paul with the same thing. As he enters relationships, first with Miriam, then with Clara, he is never fully able to give himself over, finding his mother still looms over him. There is an obvious psychoanalytic reading here which is definitely present, but this does not do justice to the subtle psychology of the novel, which allows Lawrence to investigate the inner life of Paul and his family while being sensitive but not sentimental. Beyond this skillful approach, Lawrence's prose is beautiful without being excessively flowery, bringing the sadness of the novel to life.

Perhaps the highest praise I can give to Sons and Lovers is that when I read it, I kept wondering if I was reading a Flaubert novel.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Roman Clodia TOP 100 REVIEWER on 15 Mar. 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This was the first Lawrence I ever read and so still reminds me of being 16,reading in the back garden of my parent's home... but even beyond the lovely memories it's still one of my favourites.

Passionate and enthralling, it shows Lawrence's skills at dissecting the relationships that bind men and women, and not just in a sexual sense. This is visceral and emotional, the kind of book that stops you in your tracks and makes you think 'yes, that's how life it'. Wonderful stuff and one of the most autobiographical of Lawrence's novels.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Angus Jenkinson VINE VOICE on 30 Sept. 2011
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This is of course the masterwork by one of the great influential writers of the 20th century. It's autobiographical content is not only an explanation of the evolving souls of its characters, the Morel family and those they love, but a brilliant evocation of life in a working-class mining town and the struggle to escape such roots. It's one of those must read texts!

Or rather, in the audio edition, it's become a must-listen text. Paul Slack, a former RSC actor and now the principal voice of Lawrence through his one-man touring production, Phoenix Rising, gives a virtuoso reading performance during which he brings to life the characters in all their rich vernacular and character.

Normally, I'd prefer a book over an audio version unless I wanted something to listen to while driving, but this is such a fine rendering they did add significant value to the original book, particularly as the accent, indeed patois of the mining village is so important to the quality of the novel and its dialogue.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Adrian Drew TOP 500 REVIEWER on 20 Sept. 2013
Format: Hardcover
This extraordinary work is finally available in it's complete form. Originally edited and censored by 20% by Edward Garnett to allow publication, we now have Lawrence's original novel exactly as it was intended. A new level of sensuous awareness and some franker emotive moments bring added depth to this semi-autobiographical account of a young man and his relationships with the women in his life - and most significantly his remarkable mother. Previously regatded as one of the greatest novels in the English language, this moving masterpiece is now even richer and more challenging. The authors passion flows through every page - his descriptive powers are at his finest - and he does not fall victim to the florid overwriting of some of his later work. This "new" and definitive edition of "Sons and Lovers" is truly essential reading.
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