Thursday, February 2, 2017

Umberto Eco's "The Name of the Rose": Audiobook Review

Download The Name of the Rose Audiobook | Umberto Eco | Neville Jason ...
"Hic sunt leones
Would you consider the audio edition of The Name of the Rose to be better than the print version?
I read the novel when it was translated, in the early '80s, in William Weaver's fluid voice. Hearing it, decades later, enlivened the discussions on theology and poverty, truth and superstition, that enrich so much of these erudite pages. I recommend the audio version.

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Name of the Rose?
The climactic scenes carry along the antagonist and protagonist's clashing perspectives on what should be known by people, under authority of an organization or leader. versus what they are entitled to speculate upon and figure out freely. It sounds dense and can be, but Umberto Eco's skill survives the translation and audio renderings, and it's engaging debate.

What does the narrators bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?
The three narrators (uncredited alas as to who does what) convey the accents of some of the more memorable monks and ecclesiastics well. The Latin is read very smoothly, and with an understanding of it, for those of us who can remember our courses in it, and the challenge of keeping in-depth discussions lively as well as the central mystery succeeds by their talents.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?
No. I had to portion this out an hour or so at a time. It's a lot to take in, the pace can be slow, and the demands of the ideas presented as well as the strange setting and medieval mindset all reward concentration in smaller segments. It can weary you at longer intervals.

Any additional comments?
It's a credit to Eco, Weaver, and these three actors that they managed to make debates over the poverty of Christ and the role of Aristotle so gripping, in my opinion even more so than the central whodunit intended as the page-turner. This is a rare novel of ideas that succeeds. (Audible US 2/1/17)

No comments: