The complete, unabridged audiobook of Titus Groan.
As the first novel opens, Titus, heir to Lord Sepulchrave, has just been born: He stands to inherit the miles of rambling stone and mortar that stand for Gormenghast Castle. Inside, all events are predetermined by a complex ritual, lost in history, understood only by Sourdust, Lord of the Library. There are tears and strange laughter; fierce births and deaths beneath umbrageous ceilings; dreams and violence and disenchantment contained within a labyrinth of stone.
A brilliantly sustained flight of gothic imagination.
©1968 The Estate of Mervyn Peake (P)2014 Random House Audiobooks
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It is a masterpiece, a work of art, full of grotesques and plot machinations that you could simply not predict. A work of delightful eccentricity.
The fact that I have come across nothing like it before is another mark of its calibre - a true original.
The novel is crammed full with elaborate and delicately wrought vignettes - to call any a 'scene' seems like sacrilege. I will say that most of the characters seem like mere caricatures at first but are crafted in such a subtle way that as you read on they become thoroughly three dimensional.
It delighted me.
I would compare it to a box of jewels: each character and episode so diverse yet so captivating.
I've read some of the Amazon comments relating to book/kindle version - their reviews are better written than I can, echoing having read it as a child many times and being absorbed by this world created by Peake that can not be compared directly to anything else written.
Having listened to the Millenium Trilogy also read by Saul Reichlin I knew I could trust listening to him throughout this Trilogy - and I was more than impressed. He has brought the characters and particularly the language to life in a way that I don't remember from reading it myself. He has been able to add more to it for me.
I have found it one of the ultimate experiences that a novel can give - to be lost in another world, be transported somewhere else in time and place, to visually see, to emotionally feel, and I can not imagine a better spoken performance than that given to us by Saul Reichlin.
"Beautiful visual descriptions and bizarre characters"
This is my favourite book, I've read and listened to Gormenghast repeatedly. The performance is great but a few of the voices put me off and broke the magic for me in places.
"Brilliant and hard to categorise"
Terriffic audio performance, bringing a wide range of characters to life. It's an absorbing world that the audiobook transports you into - beautiful stuff!
Well, you can't really - I'd always assumed the GG trilogy was a fantasy, LOTR type thing, but it's not. It's a poetic family saga that seems to be a link between Dickens, Stoker & Carroll and Monty Python, Harry Potter and just about every 80's Goth album. Astonishing that it was written in 1946.
The characterisation of the grotesque dramatis personnae is fantastic - his Prunesqualor is hilarious, Nanny Slag pathetic and twins dumb. ('Scuse the spellings)
It would be "Prepare to be bored" it just wouldn't work (as the BBC found out) as, well tbh, given that it's 22hrs long, not much actually happens. It's the poetic beauty of the writing that really makes this stand out.
To be critical, this is a cruel book, it could be accused of being mysoginistic (hope that's spelt right!) and I found the passages with Cada (sic) desparately dull but it really is a dark gem. Dive in!
"A modern classic"
It's about thirty years since I first read the Gormenghast trilogy. It certainly hasn't lost any of its power. This is a great reading and the characters are captured really well. I really enjoyed this revisit from an old friend.
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