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Madame Bovary: A Signature Performance by Leelee Sobieski

Narrated by: Leelee Sobieski
Length: 12 hrs and 32 mins
4 out of 5 stars (2 ratings)

Non-member price: $41.73

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Editorial Reviews

Popular actress Leelee Sobieski’s performs Gustave Flaubert’s classic Madame Bovary, articulating the masterful author’s mots justes while bringing a sultry and sumptuous touch to the story of mad passion. The novel, now a classic, was controversial when it was released in 1856, taking a turn away from the popular romantic works of its time to describe adultery in a more realistic light. The story concerns Emma Bovary and her yearning for more than the married life can offer, which, while resulting in tragedy and hardship, is not judged morally. Fans of this instrumental work of realism and first-time listeners alike will relish the ups and downs of this contemporary reading.

Publisher's Summary

One hundred and fifty years ago, Gustave Flaubert set the bar for scandal, adultery, and financial catastrophe with Madame Bovary. Now, Audible Signature Classics presents two-time Golden Globe Award nominee Leelee Sobieski (Joan of Arc) in a singular new performance that highlights the ambiguity behind a brilliantly crafted character: was Emma Bovary depraved or just a victim of circumstance?

This is the story of a beautiful woman who marries a devoted, provincial doctor, but believes she was meant for something more—a life of luxury, leisure, and, above all, true and passionate love. She throws herself headlong into a reckless series of doomed affairs, with tragic consequences, and plunges her family into financial ruin.

Sobieski’s Emma is sultry but vulnerable, offering a sympathetic rendering of the feckless madame and her plight in this cautionary tale of love, passion, and desperation. Will you condemn the madame?

Listen to more one-of-a-kind performances from actors Elijah Wood, Kenneth Branagh, David Hyde Pierce, and more, only from Audible Signature Classics.

Public Domain (P)2010 Audible, Inc.
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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Michael
  • Michael
  • 12-03-2011

Madame Bovary

I was very disappointed with the narrator Leelee Sobieski. Her English pronunciation at times was curious. Her French pronunciation on the other hand was good.Her dramatic style at times was irritating and her attempt at characterisation was feeble. Overall her narration distracted from the story and in another narrators hands I would not have struggled to finish the book.

5 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • L. McCulloch
  • 17-01-2015

A poor reading

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

A reading by someone who was more familiar with the text. I almost gave up half way through. I did give up three quarters of the way through.

How could the performance have been better?

The reader often places the wrong stress in a sentence, not anticipating the meaning properly.

What character would you cut from Madame Bovary: A Signature Performance by Leelee Sobieski?

None - I prefer unabridged versions

2 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Lily S
  • 05-02-2015

Very bleak!

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

No - quite bleak and didn't connect with any of the characters. I didn't really care what happened to them.

1 person found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • gbswales
  • 30-12-2014

A new classic for me

It was very well read and a classic I was not familiar with. I downloaded simply to try out the whispersync audio with a free classic and found that I enjoyed it despite the rather old language which requires concentration to follow

1 person found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Bob
  • 30-11-2014

Classic and Tragic

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

I would definitely recommend this to a friend, it is an often overlooked classic. Many people will have seen adaptations and know the basic story but perhaps not have read the book. The quality of language and description brings this story to life in a way that dramatisations cannot. The translation is good and the main characters are definitely understood in terms of their actions and motivations.

Which character – as performed by Leelee Sobieski – was your favourite?

Monsieur Bovary is a character that I've never quite understood when watching dramatisations before actually reading and then hearing the book. As a result of this reading I have a clearer picture of this misunderstood character and consequently much greater sympathy.

1 person found this helpful