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Mrs. Dalloway Audiobook

Mrs. Dalloway

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Publisher's Summary

Mrs. Dalloway, perhaps Virginia Woolf’s greatest novel, follows English socialite Clarissa Dalloway as she prepares for a party in post-World War I London. Four-time Oscar nominee Annette Bening (American Beauty, The Kids Are All Right) performs Woolf’s stream-of-consciousness style of storytelling brilliantly, exploring the hidden springs of thought and action in one day of a woman’s life.

When we first meet Clarissa Dalloway, she is preoccupied with the last-minute minutiae of party-planning while being flooded with memories of long ago. Clarissa then examines the realities of the present as the story travels forwards and back in time and in and out of different characters’ minds.

Mrs. Dalloway is daring not only in its stream-of-consciousness form, but also in its content. Woolf’s depiction of Septimus Warren Smith brings to light the ugly and often ignored truth of how the brutality of war can drive men mad. We also get to see in depth how our main protagonist, Clarissa Dalloway, suffers from her own form of psychological damage: the more subtle, everyday oppression of English society.

Mrs. Dalloway is part of Audible’s A-List Collection, featuring the world’s most celebrated actors narrating distinguished works of literature that each star helped select. For more great books performed by Hollywood’s finest, click here.

©1925 The Estate of Virginia Woolf (P)2012 Audible, Inc.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.9 (10 )
5 star
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3.4 (10 )
5 star
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4.3 (10 )
5 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Melinda 26/04/2015
    Melinda 26/04/2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    6
    4
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Highly original with poetic prose"

    A portrait of Mrs Clarissa Dalloway through multiple perspectives and points of view, including her own. The prose flows in lyrical streams of consciousness in momentary, sensory flashes, from Mrs Dalloway and those who surround her. Poetic, lyric, exquisite prose, this highly original work breaks open character conventions to reveal the social niceties, anxieties and hypocrisy of the times.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
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  • Howard Taylor
    Sooke, BC Canada
    11/08/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A Classic Really Well Done"
    What did you love best about Mrs. Dalloway?

    Annette Bening may seem an odd choice for this very English novel, but she does an absolutely fantastic job. This is the very kind of book that works well in an audio version because you want to go slowly to savour the language.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Lara
    Johannesburg, South Africa
    25/10/12
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "This does not work on an apple mac!!!"
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    DO NOT DOWNLOAD THIS IF YOU HAVE A MAC!!!


    Has Mrs. Dalloway turned you off from other books in this genre?

    DO NOT DOWNLOAD THIS IF YOU HAVE A MAC!!!


    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Annette Bening?

    DO NOT DOWNLOAD THIS IF YOU HAVE A MAC!!!


    What character would you cut from Mrs. Dalloway?

    DO NOT DOWNLOAD THIS IF YOU HAVE A MAC!!!


    Any additional comments?

    DO NOT DOWNLOAD THIS IF YOU HAVE A MAC!!!

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
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  • Sal
    31/08/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Sending it, back"

    I begin by confessing that only two stars for the story because I will buy the paper version of this novel in order to complete it. This is only the second audio book that I am returning. My review is not of the writing or the story.

    The narration is, disjointed? and the intonation is such that you find, yourself working out how the sentence you have just listened. To was written. So many sentences with the last word attached to the beginning of the. Next that it becomes a translation. Exercise.

    At 1 Hour and 58 minutes I shouted at it. Don't shoot the messenger. That was the point at which I realised that it has to go back.

    Unusually, I do not recommend this audiobook. I hereby pledge to all the Woolf fans out there that I will honour the author by reading it.

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Sotty
    11/11/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Poorly narrated"

    I really struggled with this audiobook. I admit I have never read the paper copy but the narration was incredibly poor which made it almost impossible to follow. The sentences are disjointed and I couldn't tell when one sentence ended and another began. Very disappointing

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Silvine
    Bristol, UK
    23/08/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Compelling English novel with US twist"
    Where does Mrs. Dalloway rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Have not listened to many so it is impossible to say.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Mrs Dalloway herself. The world she inhabits bounces off and on her and we get a picture of a particular English class of Woolf's time.


    How could the performance have been better?

    An English narrator who can correctly pronounce Westminster, Piccadilly, Marylebone and say 'hawk', not 'hock'.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    It needs to be savoured I think. In any case Bening's habit of noisily taking an inbreath drove me to distraction. I could only take her in relatively small doses.


    Any additional comments?

    I expect US listeners will be perfectly happy with this. English English folk should listen to the sample carefully first.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Mr. P. D. Selman
    Kent, U.K.
    20/08/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "'Oh! In the middle of my party, here's death.'"


    This quotation encapsulates this book for me. In this novel, which describes a single day in post-First World War England, the sense of the war having driven an enormous spike through the heart of the British Empire and English high society is palpable.

    From the lady-about-town titular character to the badly shellshocked veteran Septimus Smith, the shadow of the recent conflict is felt deeply. The contrast of these two characters is a stark one; Septimus' mind is almost completely fractured by his experiences and he is suffering from extreme hallucinations (which are most vivid thanks to Woolf's stream-of-consciousness style allowing the reader to look inside Smith's mind) which have robbed his life of all meaning, whereas Mrs. Dalloway is merely planning a party, to take place that evening. Still, her every train of thought seems to end up at an unwanted dark station, showing that she too is haunted in her own way.

    Many of the characters in this powerful tale are mourning the promise of their youth, which took place in a more innocent, less bloodstained world. There is a sense that, as much as they may try to go back to how things were before the war, the world has been irrevocably fractured. This feeling is heightened even more than Woolf can have intended by the modern reader's knowledge that the world was about to tumble into chaos once more with the coming of World War II, less than twenty years from the day presented in the novel.

    'Mrs. Dalloway' was my first Woolf novel and I'm now kicking myself for not reading her work sooner. Themes and plot aside, this book contains some of the most poetic, lyrical and almost musical prose I've ever read. It really is a joy to read, which probably explains why I've practically inhaled this book; devouring it in just three sittings. I've just bought another of her books ('To The Lighthouse') so I can go back to Woolf-world again soon.

    Annette Bening's performance is as fantastic as you would expect from an actor of her calibre. She really brings Woolf's writing to life and adds another dimension to the novel. Highly recommended.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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