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Swann's Way Audio Download – Unabridged

4.0 out of 5 stars 22 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Audio Download
  • Listening Length: 17 hours and 31 minutes
  • Program Type: Audiobook
  • Version: Unabridged
  • Publisher: Tantor Audio
  • Audible.co.uk Release Date: 24 Sept. 2010
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0044ETVEY
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank:

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Proust is one of the very few authors who meets the test of time. After one has absorbed the religious eccentricities of Tolstoy and Dostoevski, they lose some of their appeal. But in Proust there is nothing of the sort. Nothing in him is childish (unless, of course, he is actually describing a child) and nothing in him is pretentious. In fact, I really cherish this novel because it is simply the longest set of true statements which I have ever read. From beginning to end. Proust was obsessed with putting down the truth as he saw it, and in language which has moved many other major authors to tears of admiration and envy.
Watch out! The first two volumes (!) really function as an overture, and in volume 3 everything changes, as the novel becomes almost Dickensian. I don't think you will ever be able to forget the Baron de Charlus, or Mme de Guermantes, or Gilberte, or Albertine, or Saint-Loup, or any of the rest of the magnificent cast of characters.
Not for everyone, but, then again, TV is for everyone, and who wants that?
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Format: Hardcover
For the longest time, I was too intimidated to read Proust. Then, one day, I dived into this first volume like jumping into the deep end of a swimming pool. My only regret is not having jumped in sooner.
This book is the beginning of one of the greatest novels ever written. The prose and imageries are breathtaking--not at all difficult to read if you take the time to savor each sentence. Proust, like all great writers, makes you read on his terms. But once you've surrendered to the style, what a treasure you find yourself floating in. The themes and characters are universal. It makes me wish I knew French to enjoy Proust untranslated. Swann's Way can be read as its own novel. But once you start, you would surely want to continue on.
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Format: Paperback
...and i have not even finished even the first volume of this dauntingly sprawling work known as a la recherche du temps perdu, but i know what i like and i have just fallen in love with swann's way. yes, it would be silly to deny that proust does like to go on and on quite prodigiously but what a sumptuous journey! i feel almost wicked indulging in proust - and what is his writing if not supremely self-indulgent - but i find myself continually redeemed by his carefully and extensively detailed insights which unfold and arise so naturally, almost indiscernibly, from the complex interplay of memory, sensation and emotion. as i read, often i find myself either smiling with joy or on the verge of tears, moved by the beauty with which proust reveals simple, almost mundane, truths, which are all the more profound by virtue of their mundanity. in any case, i don't think it's fair to banish so bitterly all those for whom this book is a thing of joy and pleasure to the realm of the pretentious. besides, i prefer to think of myself as voluptuous, not pretentious (sniff, sniff) here's a tip: forget profundity if you must and just revel in the gorgeous details of his recollections, his attempts to recapture the past through memory. this is not a book to rush, you must let it's luxuriant and gauzy veil envelop you.
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Format: Hardcover
All of us have self-talk, which is quite different from the way we converse with each other or write. Proust has captured self-talk in a delightful display of stream-of-consciousness writing that is unequaled in literature. You will find yourself remembering many of the same thoughts in your own self-talk. By focusing inward, Proust succeeds in portraying much of what is universal about all of humanity.
Unlike Joyce, who employed the same technique, Proust is easy and delightful to follow. You will sense beauty in thought that will make you glad to be alive. It will also stimulate you to notice more about the world around you and your reactions to it.
Do be aware that an internally-focused book does not have a lot of action and drama in it. On the other hand, neither does most of life. I think Proust has captured the essence of human life in a very valuable way. But if you like Dirk Pitt novels and little else, you would do well to avoid Swann's Way.
The main drawback of self-talk is that we often build hurdles where there are none. We often talk ourselves out of things that we should pursue. As a result, our thinking stalls our ability to act. You will find lots of delicious examples of this in the hypochondria explored in this book.
Although this book is rarely assigned in literature classes, almost everyone would benefit from reading it. You can best use it as a mirror to see yourself better. That should make for a tasty dish that is irresistible once tasted. Bon appetit!
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By A Customer on 30 April 1999
Format: Audio Cassette
Reading this book while recovering from my own "melancholy madness" and deep sorrow - or to be more accurate right in the middle of the agony of it, for its tapering off coincided with the end of the book - has been an overwhelming experience. Proust is forever someone who in spite of his unsurpassable genius, his living in a different era, a different civilization, a different social class, I will somehow feel forever to be my friend. As for Swann's melancholy madness, in a way it was much worse than mine - he loved Odette more and he suffered more - but then again he seems in a sense to have deserved it more, for he had not suffered to gain her love, only in its loss, he was somehow less innocent than I, and the actual betrayal of his love was perhaps more thoroughly reprehensible. And yet it is very strange and mysterious that the story of Swann and Odette should, in so many ways and with so many points of similarity, parallel the story of my agony which was then at its height. Proust is unsurpassed in extending our capacity to sympathize with the sufferings of others, even if those others are by and large members of the ruling class. Who is to say that their sufferings, though different, are not as great or even greater than those of the poor?
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