1984: New Classic Edition
Story (Plot) 5
Performance 5
Production Quality 5
Attention Holding 5
1984
Author(s): George Orwell
Narrator(s): Simon Prebble
Length: 11 hrs and 26 mins
Publication Year: 2007
Genre(s): Classic Literature, Science Fiction
Publisher: Blackstone Audio Inc
Format: Audiobook
Source: Purchased

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1984: New Classic Edition

This is another classic piece of literature that is very difficult to critique, so I will give you a brief rundown of what this book is about.

1984: New Classic Edition takes place in 1984, London, Oceania, one of three (Oceania, Eurasia and Eastasia) intercontinental super-states who divided the world among themselves after a global war. Oceania’s slogan is WAR IS PEACE, FREEDOM IS SLAVERY, and IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH. Ruled by “Big Brother” leader of the “party”, his Thought Police and 4 ministries, the Ministry of Peace (Minipax), the Ministry of Plenty (Miniplenty), the Ministry of Love (Miniluv), and the Ministry of Truth (Minitrue).

With telescreens everywhere even in you private home there is seldom a place where “Big Brother” can’t see or hear you. In this world we meet Winston who’s existence consists of living in a one-room flat on a subsistence diet of black bread and synthetic meals washed down with Victory-brand gin. In Oceania the truth is only what they tell you it is, and it is Winston’s job to alter the historical records so what was said to be the truth actually is. Thoughts against the party, witch Winston starts to have, are considered thought-crimes and are punishable by death.

I hope that I didn’t give too much away. I found my self frightened at times while listening to this. Thinking about how today’s media, commercials and politicians are always telling us the “truth”, what is the truth really?

Narrator Review

Simon Prebble’s very nice subtle English accent I think added a level of believability to the story. Mr. Prebble easily differentiated characters, added emotion to his voice beautifully, sometime making me think he was actually worried or frightened ect. As is my experience with Blackstone Audio titles they try to get the best possible narrator for the story at hand and Simon Prebble did not disappoint.

Publishers Summary

Blackstone Audio presents a new recording of this dramatically popular book.

George Orwell depicts a gray, totalitarian world dominated by Big Brother and its vast network of agents, including the Thought Police – a world in which news is manufactured according to the authorities’ will and people live tepid lives by rote.

Winston Smith, a hero with no heroic qualities, longs only for truth and decency. But living in a social system in which privacy does not exist and where those with unorthodox ideas are brainwashed or put to death, he knows there is no hope for him.

The year 1984 has come and gone, yet George Orwell’s nightmare vision of the world we were becoming in 1949 is still the great modern classic portrait of a negative Utopia.

©1949 Harcourt Brace and Company, renewed ©1977 Sonia Brownell Orwell; (P)2007 Blackstone Audio Inc.

What the Critics Say

Nominee, 2008 Audie Award, Classic

“It is probable that no other work of this generation has made us desire freedom more earnestly or loathe tyranny with such fullness.” (New York Times, 1949)

Audible Editor Reviews
Why we think it’s Essential: The ultimate dystopia. 1984 has come and gone, but Orwell is still as poignant as ever. Simon Prebble’s narration, enriched with forboding music and effects, provides the perfect blend of seriousness and disaffection. Writ large in audio and rendered scarier than Stephen King on a late-night country-road drive, it makes you wonder all over again how right Orwell was. —Chris Doheny

About the Author

About George Orwell

George Orwell

Eric Arthur Blair, better known by his pen name George Orwell, was an English author and journalist. His work is marked by keen intelligence and wit, a profound awareness of social injustice, an intense opposition to totalitarianism, a passion for clarity in language, and a belief in democratic socialism.

Considered perhaps the twentieth century's best chronicler of English culture, Orwell wrote fiction, polemical journalism, literary criticism and poetry. He is best known for the dystopian novel "Nineteen Eighty-Four" (published in 1949) and the satirical novella "Animal Farm" (1945)—they have together sold more copies than any two books by any other twentieth-century author. His 1938 book "Homage to Catalonia", an account of his experiences as a volunteer on the Republican side during the Spanish Civil War, together with numerous essays on politics, literature, language, and culture, are widely acclaimed.

Orwell's influence on contemporary culture, popular and political, continues decades after his death. Several of his neologisms, along with the term "Orwellian" — now a byword for any oppressive or manipulative social phenomenon opposed to a free society — have entered the vernacular.

Disclosure
Audiobook downloaded from Audible.com.
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