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Great Expectations by Charles Dickens

great_expectations_240x317From AudioFile magazine:
This classic about young Pip’s aspirations to become a gentleman and wed Estella and fate’s different designs for him is familiar to many as a television drama and a movie. Simon Vance brings a whole new dimension to the story as he imbues each character with a unique voice, and with exquisite diction provides listeners with a totally new experience. Every detail, every nuance is accorded importance, and lines, even paragraphs, that might have been skipped when reading the book to oneself, or omitted entirely in film, are given their due in this performance. Vance takes the work of the great writer and delivers it to listeners with a full cast of authentic characters and terrific attention to the writing itself. S.S.R. Winner of AudioFile Earphones Award, 2009 Audies Winner © AudioFile 2008

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The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson

girl_with_dragon_tattoo_227x226From AudioFile Magazine:
Two complex stories are woven seamlessly together—first, the mysterious disappearance 20 years ago of the daughter of one of Sweden’s wealthiest families, and second, a tale of financial corruption and libel. Mikael Blomkvist, investigative journalist, and Lisbeth Salander, a genius hacker with a past, are the two central characters, with many more playing important parts. Simon Vance is outstanding, as is his narration. His voices are so natural and fit so well with their characters that the listener is completely transported into the story. Despite an unhurried tempo, the book never bogs down as the plot is untangled thread by thread. This production exemplifies an extraordinary match between book and narrator. S.S.R. Winner of AudioFile Earphones Award © AudioFile 2008

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Under Enemy Colors by S. Thomas Russell

under_enemy_colors_160x252From AudioFile Magazine:
UNDER ENEMY COLORS is a triumph. Set aboard a frigate at sea off the coast of France at the height of British naval power, this gripping novel combines a simple war story with a tale of infuriating office politics, cowardly leadership, and one man’s struggle to remain loyal to his king, an inept commander, and a seething crew. Simon Vance could well earn another Audie nomination with this superb reading. He expertly navigates a complicated story with many characters and a great deal of dialogue, set in a formal style of the period. While accents can too often be the downfall of a good audiobook, Vance makes them an asset. He uses an array of voices to allow the listener to follow the fast-paced dialogue effortlessly. This is a terrific story, enjoyably told. J.B.B. Winner of AudioFile Earphones Award © AudioFile 2008

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The Lodger Shakespeare by Charles Nicholl

lodger_shakespeare_240x317From AudioFile Magazine:
More effectively than a time machine, this extraordinary nonfiction book, expertly read by Simon Vance, transports listeners to sixteenth- and seventeenth-century London and the life of William Shakespeare. Shakespeare is 40, writing his great plays, and living in rented London lodging during the theater season. When he gives evidence in a court case, his actual words are taken down and stored away for hundreds of years. Enter historian Charles Nicholl, who uses them, along with countless other dusty documents, to re-create the era and Shakespeare’s milieu. Vance gives verve to the excellent writing. Occasional touches of foreign and regional accents add color. And he paces the text and copious historical and literary quotations perfectly. This is a book that one wants never to end. A.C.S. Winner of AudioFile Earphones Award © AudioFile 2008

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The Art Thief by Noah Charney

From AudioFile Magazine:
Hilarious! Delicious! This deftly plotted mystery is filled with art and French food and delightful heroines and heroes. (Or are they thieves?) Author Noah Charney’s knowledge of the art world is extensive—he headed the first international think tank on art theft—so this romp is not only entertaining, but educational as well. Even better than the art mystery are the meals. Simon Vance uses rich accents to create a believable Gallic atmosphere as he “ooo-la-las!” his way through a series of gastronomic adventures, making listeners’ mouths water at the same time that their sides ache with laughter. By the end of the book, it’s hard to care where the paintings end up as long as all the characters are happy. B.H.B Winner of AudioFile Earphones Award © AudioFile 2008

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The Terror by Dan Simmons

terror_388x408From AudioFile magazine:
A blistering winter voyage, complete with scurvy, starvation, and thrilling adventure, is the focus of this powerful and beautifully realized tale of exploration on the high seas. Simmons’s writing is so vivid that narrator Simon Vance need only deliver the material with a clear and firm reading to capture the interest of listeners. Vance does this so well that the presentation sounds like a recorded journal entry and captivates listeners from start to finish as he plays his role with the utmost respect for Simmons’s work. The result is a moving listening experience—perfectly executed—which transports listeners to the galley of the HMS Terror during its expedition through the Arctic Circle. L.B. Winner of AudioFile Earphones Award, 2008 Audies Finalist © AudioFile 2008

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