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Publisher's Summary

Between his work on the 2014 Audible Audiobook of the Year, Hamlet, Prince of Denmark: A Novel, and his performance of Classic Love Poems, narrator Richard Armitage (The Hobbit, Hannibal) has quickly become a listener favorite. Now, in this defining performance of Charles Dickens' classic David Copperfield, Armitage lends his unique voice and interpretation, truly inhabiting each character and bringing real energy to the life of one of Dickens' most famous characters.

This epic, exuberant novel is one of the greatest coming-of-age stories in literature, chronicling David Copperfield's extraordinary journey through life as he encounters villains, saviors, eccentrics, and grotesques - including the wicked Mr. Murdstone, stouthearted Peggotty, formidable Betsey Trotwood, impecunious Micawber, and the odious Uriah Heep. Dickens' great novel (based, in part, on his own boyhood and which he described as a "favorite child") is a work filled with life, both comic and tragic.

Listen to Richard Armitage bring Dickens' words to life, and you'll understand why Virginia Woolf called David Copperfield "the most perfect of all the Dickens novels".

Public Domain (P)2015 Audible, Inc.

What listeners say about David Copperfield

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Cop a feel of this heap of a read

David Copperfield is an absolute classic; a must read. Peppered with a panoply of unforgettable characters: Wilkins Micawber, Uriah Heap, Betsy Trotwood, Mr Dick, Steerforth, Tommy Traddles, Pegotty, Mr Pegotty, Barkiss, the Murdstones, and the most fascinating, viciously repressed, and angry Rosa Dartle. While the narrator's language is sometime sesquipedalian, making the story difficult to penetrate, the reader, on finishing, will find themselves having read an unforgettable tale that will bear the re-reading that makes a book worth reading in the first place. Dickens is a master story teller, bringing to life the people, the interiors in which they dwell and work, and the landscapes, townscapes and cityscape in which they move. His characters are as fresh and intriguing 167 years on from this novel's publication as ever. His commentary on corruption and questionable practice, amongst other social and political questions, as telling today as then. That having been said, Richard Armitage's reading, and voicing of the characters, brings to the 2016 audiobook a real colour that makes this tale well worth 'reading' in this format.

6 people found this helpful

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One writer, many characters - one reader, many voices

Richard Armitage brings the many characters of Dickens' David Copperfield to life by his vocal skills. Not only are the characters distinct, the voices he creates for them are rich expressions of their personalities and life circumstances. I especially enjoyed the eccentric but grounded Betsy Trotwood and untrustworthy Uriah Heap. Mr Micawber's embroidered verbosity flowed from Armitage as if he were the man himself.

Armitage's pace and timing kept the story moving along despite its length. A few small issues with sound quality in the third quarter, but perhaps that was my device? Recommended for all who love Dickens, and those who think they should but find him hard to read. Thoroughly enjoyable.

6 people found this helpful

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Genius, bliss and excellent company. Isolation delight.

Purchase immediately, and you won’t be lonely on your long walks. You will find yourself looking forward to tedious tasks. You may never want isolation to end.
The narration does Dickens credit.

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  • Mrs
  • 21-04-2016

Wonderful rendering of this classic book.

Richard Armitage really brings to life the characters, passions and emotions of this classic. The narration is exceptionally well done giving voices to each and every person as an individual. This audio book is well worth the highest acclaim.

3 people found this helpful

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The best!

To be honest, I picked this book because Richard Armitage was reading it. Also, I like classic literature.
Boy, was I in for a treat. I enjoyed it immensely. Armitage's characterisation was superb. I thought at first that there were too many gravelly, wheezy old men but those characters were mostly at the beginning. There are so many great characters in any Dickens and I found it easy to know who was speaking by the diverse accents. As much as I love Richard Armitage, I completely forgot who was reading, especially when Uriah Heap spoke. He brought these characters alive.

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A brilliant accomplishment!

I never thought listening to DC via audiobook would be so completely enjoyable - I've been rewarded for my hours & hours of determined attention by absolute rapture - over the discovery of a wonderful piece of classic literature read by a true pro! Amazing Richard Armitage, such a wonderful, rare talent at work. I don't think I could ever read the book again without his brilliant characterisations and rich emotional expression in my head! Loved it, loved it, loved it!

1 person found this helpful

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Doing Dickens Justice

I was wary of choosing a version of David Copperfield narrrated by Richard Armitage - thinking he was more of a 'leading man' kind of actor rather than the kind of character actor I prefer as narrators but I was completely wrong in this. He does a wonderful job with this Dickens gem and does justice to it in so many ways. An absolute joy to listen to - I will now try to convince my kids to listen too. The editing was a bit clumsy and obvious in places but that is a minor issue . I recommend it thoroughly.

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Marvellous reading

Richard Armitage’s reading and characterisations make this so pleasurable; one could argue there is no more enjoyable way to experience this book than listening to it read aloud by a great actor. He doesn’t show off though- all his considerable talent is modestly directed towards illuminating the text.

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Wonderful

Amazing narration of one of my favourite book books !Thank you to the narrator Richard Armitage .

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Greeting An old Friend

Always loved, always moved by Dickens and so suberbly characterised by the wit and ingenuity of the many voices of Richard Armitage that it was like meeting up with old friends AND despised foes!

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  • donna lupton
  • 07-12-2018

Surprisingly Superior

I was hesitant at first when I got this book, I do enjoy classic literature but Dickens is not one I typically like. the book is like many of his others, simply dipicting the life of a individual. Yet the characters are lovable and realistic, the life lessons are multiple and Richard Armitage does a superb job of bringing the story to fruition

47 people found this helpful

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  • Wayne
  • 03-09-2017

A PERFECT narration of an English classic!

I find Charles Dickens' novels difficult to read because of his sentence structure and length. Reading David Copperfield was especially difficult for me due to the length of the novel, but the story is so worthwhile that the effort is rewarded.

I listened to this Audible version one or two chapters a day over several weeks. Richard Armitage does an incredible job of narration especially with the character's voices. Listening to him is a joy. There are many excellent narrators of audio books, but the consistent quality of Armitage's work of over 36 hours of David Copperfield ranks this as the best narrated audio book I have ever listened to. It is a classic narration of an English classic novel.

This narration of David Copperfield by Richard Armitage has my HIGHEST POSSIBLE RECOMMENDATION. Even if you have previously read the book and maybe especially if you have not read David Copperfield, you will enjoy this audio book.

124 people found this helpful

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  • Diane P
  • 08-09-2018

An astonishing, rapturous narration of a beautiful story

I am so amazed by the narration of this book, which was new to me. It is so compassionate, so vivid, so human. Not just engaged but embodying these characters so cleverly drawn by Dickens, bringing them to three-dimensional life. He makes the florid prose easy(ish) to follow.

I adore Dickens’ subtle observations of human nature. I was profoundly touched by this book. My favorite character was Mr. Micawber— what a wonderful journey we have with him; such an unexpected one... and so, so funny.

In closing, I think Mr. Armitage may deliver the finest narration for an audiobook that I have had the pleasure of hearing.

20 people found this helpful

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  • tessa
  • 09-02-2016

The Armitage Voice"

Where does David Copperfield rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

So far, this is the one I love the most....David Copperfield is one of my favorites anyway, but to have that voice, the voice of Richard Armitage "read it to me", just awesome

Have you listened to any of Richard Armitage’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

Yes, they way he reads, the tones, the inflections, the voice changes is just brilliant..

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

I almost did, but I needed to sleep...

Any additional comments?

Just keep them coming with Richard Armitage at the helm.......Thank you to Audible and to "The Armitage" for bringing David Copperfield to life.....

86 people found this helpful

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  • Barbieri, Philip
  • 29-11-2018

Voice perfect

Richard Armitage has been my favorite reader to date. I was enthralled by his narration of David Copperfield. His voice was perfect for this Charles Dickens' masterpiece. I tried reading the book years ago, but was glad that I dropped out of reading it myself since Richard Armitage so enriched the experience for me when I finally found this. I keep hoping I'll find another reader as perfectly suited to the material as was the case with this match made in heaven.

7 people found this helpful

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  • Rebecca
  • 24-07-2016

Absolutely spot-on perfect!!!!

I have read David Copperfield at least three times over the years, along with most of Dickens, and my love of Dickens led me to Wilkie Collins...what I'm trying to say is that I'm a huge enthusiast of the author as well as this story and allow me to assure you; THIS is an absolutely AMAZING narrator who brings each individual character to life, whether it's a middle aged aunt with a starchy Scottish brogue, a creepy villian, be he ever so 'umble, a sweet young lady, or a sensitive man recalling his childhood. This production is transporting.

22 people found this helpful

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  • Christopher
  • 22-02-2016

Classic Story with Superb Performance.

What made the experience of listening to David Copperfield [Audible Studios] the most enjoyable?

Richard Armitage's voice was incredible. He brought this book to a new life. His beautiful inflections and characterizations were spot on.

Any additional comments?

You've either read David Copperfield and want to know if it is worth the listen, or you are new to this work. Be not hesitant, this is one of the best performances on Audible. And David Copperfield is just classic. Dicken's has a definite style to him. He's studied for a reason, and that reason is damned good writing. Spend the credit... you'll be cultured as well as entertained.

45 people found this helpful

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  • Darwin8u
  • 21-05-2018

Procrastination is the thief of time...

“I know enough of the world now to have almost lost the capacity of being much surprised by anything”
― Charles Dickens, David Copperfield

'David Copperfield' contains more saints per capita than any beatified book by Butler. Dickens is amazing in his ability to be both grand and personal. David Copperfield is sprawling, with dozens of threads that weave around David Copperfield's youth and adulthood. IT is amazing not only how he can transform a character through time, but also show that our perceptions of those same characters are drawn often from imperfect information and overly simple assumptions. Yes, there are parts of 'David Copperfield' that float between the melodramatic and the grotesque, but one doesn't read Dickens for the unmoving, normal or embellished. There are a handful of novels that I would consider to be the literary equivalent of scripture: 'Les Miserables', 'the Idiot', 'Anna Karenina', and for sure 'David Copperfield'.

There are several moments in 'David Copperfield' when, as a reader, you recognize you will never be half the writer Dickens was (on deadline). He might just be second to Shakespeare in my book, or at least be among a small cadre of writers that belong on the silver pedestal below the Bard.

This isn't as technically perfect as 'Great Expectations', but it is top tier Dickens for sure. A massive novel that floats with the weight of a beach read half its size. If you are going to read a Dickens, this might not be your first stop, but it shouldn't be far from your second.

29 people found this helpful

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  • Danette
  • 06-10-2020

Yawn!

I love Dickens! This narrator is so dull and slow and quiet... I was going crazy trying to listen! Everything seems monotonous. I'm 5 hours in and I'm switching to the version read by Simon Vance.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Alexandra R. Charles
  • 29-11-2018

What a classic

I was concerned that David Copperfield was Dicken's favorite novel. Victorian sentimentality can be over the top, but Richard Armitage's characterization is consistent and nuanced. I was transported to the world created and the narrative evoked empathy and sympathy without being maudlin.

5 people found this helpful

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  • JD
  • 21-02-2016

Brought me back to Dickens

Would you consider the audio edition of David Copperfield [Audible Studios] to be better than the print version?

Yes. Mr Armitage 'performs' rather than 'reads', so it is like watching the whole book in my mind's eye - he brings all the characters and scenes to startling life.

What other book might you compare David Copperfield [Audible Studios] to, and why?

The only proper comparison would be with another Dickens' book - and I've listened to none of these. However, I shall make a comparison with Mr Armitage's audiobook, 'Hamlet, Prince of Denmark: The Novel' because both have complex story-lines and vividly voiced characters. I would also make a comparison with his reading of Bernard Cornwell's 'Lords of the North' for similar reasons, but, oddly and unlike all his other audiobooks, Audible have not added this to their collection.

Which character – as performed by Richard Armitage – was your favourite?

So many are brilliant, it is difficult to choose: Uriah Heep, Mr Creakle, Rosa Dartle, Mr Micawber, Betsey Trotwood, Mr Peggotty, Steerforth etc. But, one character I had forgotten all about when I read the book years ago is the dwarf lady, Miss Mowcher. He has given her an unexpected Liverpudlian accent and it was an absolute delight to listen to her. On the written page, she made no impact, but, in this audiobook, she is totally memorable.

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

It is far, far too long for one sitting. It took me 10 days, listening to a chunk per day. I think there is so much going on and so many vivid moments to enjoy that, spreading it out like this is the best way to appreciate what both Dickens and Mr Armitage have achieved together.

Any additional comments?

This reading has brought me back to an appreciation of Dickens - his characterisation, his humour, his story-telling and his ability to relate tragic scenes. Chapter 56, which describes a violent storm and the loss of 3 ships at sea, including two of the book's characters, had me sitting there with tears streaming down my face. Charles Dickens and Richard Armitage are a perfect combination. Very well done, both you guys!

40 people found this helpful

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  • Val Pope
  • 31-03-2016

Brilliant!

This is probably the best known of Dickens' novels and this unabridged reading is absolutely first class. T he narrator manages to bring very well-known characters to new life. The accents are varied: the basic narration ( David's voice) is convincing both as a young boy and mature man. It's just a wonderful listen. The most difficult thing with Dickens is bringing out the humour, the Micawbers and the redoubtable Miss Mowcher made me laugh out loud. Imagine Lily Savage and Lenny Henry! The sad parts are sad, the funny parts are funny and the dramatic bits are totally convincing. Buy it! You'll listen to it again and again.

14 people found this helpful

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  • Annie
  • 16-04-2016

David Copperfield brought to Life!

I'm a huge fan of Charles Dickens, who is a master storyteller and a genius at creating extraordinary and memorable characters. The supremely talented and very versatile Richard Armitage gives us a really impressive interpretation of all the characters and does full justice to Dickens' masterpiece. It's an artistic/literary 'marriage' made in heaven in my opinion, and I hope Richard can be convinced to do more narrations for Audible in the future.

9 people found this helpful

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  • Mrs. K. Sowden
  • 27-02-2016

Sublime

How do I do justice to this epic novel and towering performance from Richard Armitage? A truly great story with birth, death, loss, cruelty, love, loyalty and many more themes covered by a master storyteller. It's sometimes hard to believe it's one man reading with the dozens of voices, all so different and distinctive. He and Dickens made me laugh out loud and cry as well as making me angry, sad, outraged, happy and hopeful. I cannot recommend this audiobook enough and hope it's not too long before Richard Armitage does another.

28 people found this helpful

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  • MaMaMason
  • 14-04-2016

Exemplary narration from Richard Armitage

Having listened (and enjoyed) the audible dramatized version of David Copperfield narrated by Miriam Margoyles, Timothy Spall et al, I was somewhat loathe to spend one of my audible credits just to listen to the unabridged version read by Richard Armitage. However I took the plunge, and can only say that I'm very pleased that I did. Richard has the most wonderfully mellifluous baritone voice, and has an amazing ability to change accent/pace/tone etc according to character. As he reads he gives the impression that he's totally immersed in the story himself, and so the humorous subtleties are revealed in the telling. I could listen to Richard Armitage read the phone book, having him read Dickens is just sublime!
👍👍👍👍👍

6 people found this helpful

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  • Mrs R E Whiting
  • 07-06-2016

Addictive - I couldn't stop listening

Would you listen to David Copperfield [Audible] again? Why?

Yes. The story has such rich characters which are brought alive by the dramatic performance of Richard Armitage

Which character – as performed by Richard Armitage – was your favourite?

Uriah Heep, his slimy creepiness was so well articulated closely followed by Betsy Trotwood but they were all fantastic and so individual including Traddles, Micawber, Dora and Agnes.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Freddietheone
  • 01-01-2020

Charles Dickens favourite book...

I was FORCED to read Dickens at school, with Oliver Twist, which I found to be depressing and old-fashioned. I developed an avoidance of all things Dickens, as a result. Possibly foolish but it did allow me to grow, mature and have a better appreciation of life.
I decided to try David Copperfield, not knowing the story but very much admiring Richard Armitage as the narrator.

What a wonderful story! With a mixture of characters vile and loveable. Richard Armitage can create voices that so perfectly fit the character, especially Micawber and Uriah Heep.

I recommend this audio book.

3 people found this helpful

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  • LizG
  • 05-03-2016

Stunning performance

Couldn't stop listening - this was a fantastic performance - wonderful voices bringing the characters to life - truly compelling.

6 people found this helpful

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  • fay
  • 16-04-2016

Brilliant narration.

Dickens is Dickens, but what really makes this book come alive is the narration.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Bunnyhunt
  • 05-05-2016

Delightful Dickens

A wonderful,sensitive and amusing reading or rather all embracing performance of this iconic book. I love Dickens but sometimes get a bit bogged down with the density of the language. This reading has convinced me that his writing comes alive when it is read aloud and all those varied characters are brought to life. Listening has even made the process of reading his work myself much easier .

4 people found this helpful

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