Sbuchler's Reviews > Cranford: Library Edition

Cranford by Elizabeth Gaskell
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's review
Jun 18, 2009

it was amazing
bookshelves: read-in-2009, other-fiction, audio-books
Recommended for: Louisa May Alcott fans
Read in July, 2009 , read count: 1

Genre: Classics

It was fascinating listening to this audio book and comparing it to the BBC Miniseries of the same name. For all the Miniseries combined 4 of Gaskells novels, it stayed true to the spirit of this book, and to the characters, if not to all of the events. Nadia May's reading of the book was very pleasant and helped the story along.

The book itself is very much a slice-of-life kind of novel. There isn't an overarching plot, and the incidents described jump around in time (if they're not related to each other); a character who dies in one of the first chapters is alive and chatting in chapter 3.

As with the BBC Miniseries, the events are described though the eyes of Mary Smith, whose name we don't even learn until disk 5 (out of 6!) We learn even less about Mary as a person then the miniseries showed, even though she talks about herself near the end of the novel.

I found the novel very charming, although you do have to fill in the emotional interactions between characters yourself. Mary (as the narrator) reports facts and conversations, reactions are especially lacking in her descriptions. I don't know if I would've like the novel nearly so much without having seen the BBC Miniseries, but since I had, I happily used that to fill in the blanks.

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