A Tale of Two Cities [Naxos]

  • by Charles Dickens
  • Narrated by Anton Lesser
  • 14 hrs and 40 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

"It was the best of times and the worst of times." In one of the most famous openings of any novel, Dickens masterfully presents the turmoil of the French Revolution, which is the backdrop for a novel of love, patience, hope, and self-sacrifice. This version is read by Anton Lesser, whose award-winning Dickens recordings in their abridged form has now resulted in the opportunity to read the full unabridged text. His singular characterizations led to him being chosen by Peter Ackroyd to play Dickens himself in the major TV account of the writer.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

It is a far far better thing ...

This is a tale of love and redemption superbly narrated by Anton Lesser. Probably best known for its opening and closing lines it charts the lives of a group of characters in the years leading up to the French Revolution and the subsequent Terror. Dickens' political beliefs shine through as he highlights the social disparities between the peasantry and the aristocracy that contributed to the revolution in France whilst condemning the brutality and vidictiveness of its after effects. Written in the 1850's the French revolution was part of history, but only quite recent history and Dickens uses this novel to sound a warning against the inhumanities he saw around him at that time in England.

As usual his heroine is unfeasibly angelic and his hero unfeasibly noble but unlike other Dickens' novels the quota of his 'comic' characters is much reduced giving this tale more gravity than is usual in his work. The characterisations are realised beautifuuly by Lesser's narration, enhancing rather than detracting from the original work.

One word of caution however, be careful where you are as you listen to final chapter!
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- Andrea

Brilliant Dickens, Brilliant Lesser

Would you listen to A Tale of Two Cities again? Why?

In a few years I will listen to a Tale of Two Cities again, to enjoy the brilliance of writer and narrator.


Which scene did you most enjoy?

The fight scene between Madame Defarge and Miss Pross, surely the source of the final fight scene in Alien.


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- Roderic

Book Details

  • Release Date: 17-11-2005
  • Publisher: Naxos AudioBooks