Tuesday, February 01, 2011

Casanova - Audio

By Giacomo Casanova
Narrated by Benedict Cumberbatch

I’ll be completely honest with you here. I have never had any desire to read Casanova. I still don’t. It’s just not something I’m interested it.

Why did I listen to the abridged audiobook, then?

Because it’s narrated by Benedict Cumberbatch.

I know, I know. Hear me out, though. I downloaded this very very shortly after watching Sherlock for the first time. It was the first time I’d ever seen Cumberbatch and his acting in the role of Sherlock astounded me. I’m sure some of you have already heard that bit.

But I was incredibly impressed by his voice and how he used it when he was acting. Doubly so when he was acting as Sherlock acting.

And if you follow me on twitter, you will have seen that I finally pinned his voice down as something in the range of Alan Rickman (who we all know has a distinctive, wonderful voice) and Jack Davenport (most well known to me as Commodore James Norrington from Pirates of the Caribbean – rewatch those and listen to him speak). I remarked one day that Benedict Cumberbatch would be a perfect candidate for reading audiobooks.

A few people immediately rose to the occasion and pointed me in the direction of Casanova. I was helpless to my love of voice work and bought it immediately.

I don’t have much to say about the book itself, to be honest. It was an abridged version, as I said before, so it isn’t the entire book and I don’t even know what parts have been cut. I don’t particularly care either. I mean, it was interesting in the same way that documentaries you watch because there’s nothing else on are interesting and I was a bit excited at the prospect of the queerness of relations with the castrati who was actually female, but it turned out that she was sort of forced into the role and didn’t actually identify with it at all.

But I’ve listened to it more than once because Benedict Cumberbatch’s voice and storytelling capabilities are amazing. I was blown away by how much his voice compelled me to listen to a story I was hardly interested in. If you haven’t listened to it, I’d suggest heading over to Audible.com or iTunes or somewhere and listening to the preview.

I won’t recommend this based on the story itself, unless you enjoy this kind of story, but I definitely recommend Benedict Cumberbatch’s voice.

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