Home > Audiobooks, Fiction > The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoevsky

The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoevsky

Wednesday, 24 February 2010 Leave a comment Go to comments

Fiction. Abridged Audio from Hovel Audio. Originally published as a serial in The Russian Messenger and completed in November 1880. Read by Simon Vance.
19 hours and 25 minutes. This was a “free audiobook of the month” from christianaudio.com in December of 2009.

While I normally prefer to listen to unabridged audiobooks, I did not realize that the book was abridged until after I began listening to it. I am somewhat curious to know what was taken out, because the book still did plenty of rambling, even in it’s abridged form. The book is the story of three (well, four) brothers and their relationship with their father, interspersed with long discourses on various topics, sometimes smoothly inserted, other times not so much. (This may be in part due to the abridgment, however. I don’t know.)

My eldest daughter assures me that long and rambly is just the nature of Russian literature. While I enjoyed the story, I’ve acquired a copy of the Cliff Notes from Paperbackswap.com in an attempt to get a better handle on why it’s considered such a great book. I suppose I show my literary ignorance by even admitting that I don’t get it, but I am trying to remedy that. Hopefully that counts for something. If I have an “ah-ha” moment I’ll be sure to let you know.

Publisher’s Summary:
Fyodor Dostoevsky’s crowning life work, The Brothers Karamazov, stands among the greatest novels in world literature. His exploration of faith, doubt, morality, and the place of suffering in life are equaled in no other work of literature, save the Bible.

The book explores the possible role of four brothers in the unresolved murder of their father, Fyodor Karamazov. At the same, it carefully explores the personalities and inclinations of the brothers themselves. Their psyches together represent the full spectrum of human nature, and continuum of faith and doubt. Ultimately this novel seeks to understand the real meaning of existence and includes much beneficial philosophical and spiritual discussion that moves the reader towards faith.

This new abridgment done exclusively for Hovel Audio by Russian Studies scholar Thomas Beyer keeps the important religious themes of the novel intact. It is an excellent way for the admirer of Dostoevsky to refresh himself, or to introduce Dostoevsky to a friend who has yet to experience the joy of reading his works.

Fyodor Dostoevsky (1821-1881) writes with a passion and keen insight of biblical grace like no other modern novelist. His works Crime and Punishment and The Idiot testify to his great skill. The Brothers Karamazov has been hailed by readers for over a century as one of the finest achievements in all of western literature.

Thomas R. Beyer is Professor of Russian at Middlebury College in Vermont. He holds three degrees in Slavic Literature including a Ph.D. from the University of Kansas. In his decades of teaching, Tom Beyer has read The Brothers Karamazov dozens of times. His abridgment of the novel for Hovel Audio shows his thorough knowledge of his subject.

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Categories: Audiobooks, Fiction
  1. happy
    Thursday, 25 February 2010 at 7:30 am

    Almost done thanks for the heads up in December

  2. Steve
    Saturday, 27 February 2010 at 7:00 am

    Sorry to retweet you on your own blog, but this article you found on the Onion gave me a serious case of the giggles.
    RT @ReJoycingToday The Brothers Karamazov: my blog post: http://bit.ly/dtxIfv and a LOL from The Onion: http://onion.com/1CBQ8V

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