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Archive: Other Books > (POLL BALLOT) Don Quixote / Miguel de Cervantes - 4****

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Book Concierge (tessabookconcierge) | 5641 comments Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra
Don Quixote – Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra
Audible audio performed by George Guidall

Who hasn’t heard of Don Quixote fighting windmills, or wearing a barber’s basin as a helmet? Who doesn’t know about his faithful squire, Sancho Panza? Or the beautiful Dulcinea, for whom the Knight is ready to lay down his life?

I’d read snippets from this work over the years but never experienced the whole thing. I’m sorry I waited so long to do so. It is a marvelous piece of fiction and is widely acknowledged as the first modern-day novel.

Cervantes gives us a main character who has lofty ideals and a noble purpose, but who is fatally flawed (possibly insane). His attempts to replicate the feats of chivalry he has long read about and admired are met with scorn and ridicule, yet he remains faithful to his ideal. Certain that he will save the imprisoned Dulcinea and win her heart and everlasting gratitude.

Sancho is the faithful servant, commenting frequently in pithy sayings and proverbs, trying, in vain to steer his master away from disaster, but gamely following and taking his punishment. My favorite section is toward the end when Sancho is “appointed governor” and asked to hand out judgment on a variety of disputes. His solutions are surprisingly wise, despite his convoluted explanations.

This edition is translated by Edith Grossman, and was published in 2003. While I have not read other translations, nor the original Spanish, I thought it flowed smoothly and gave me a sense of Cervantes’ style.

The audiobook of this translation is performed by George Guidall, and he does a fantastic job of it. I was fully engaged and recalled those long-ago days when my grandparents, aunts or uncles would tell stories on the porch on summer evenings, all us children listening in rapt attention. I particularly liked the voices he used for both Don Quixote and for Sancho Panza.

LINK to My Review

message 2: by Theresa (last edited Jan 24, 2020 07:04PM) (new) - added it

Theresa | 6326 comments This is one of my bucket list reads.

Tracy (tstan) | 1182 comments I’m glad you liked it! This is one of my all time favorites

Karin | 6926 comments This was 3 stars for me on audio, 2 when I read it in print. Much of it is not my cup of tea, but I love, love, love the speech by the shepherdess.

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