Heart of Darkness

Heart of Darkness

Downloadable Audiobook - 1999
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Horror awaits Charlie Marlow, a seaman assigned by an ivory company to retrieve a cargo boat along with one of its employees, Mr. Kurtz, who is stranded deep in the heart of the Belgian Congo. Marlow's journey up the brooding dark river soon becomes a struggle to maintain his own sanity as he witnesses the brutalization of the natives by white traders and then discovers the enigmatic Mr. Kurtz. Kurtz, once a genius and the company's most successful representative, has become a savage; his compound is decorated by a row of human heads mounted on spears. It soon becomes clear that the demonic mastermind, liberated from the conventions of European culture, has traded his soul to become ruler of his own horrific dominion.

Acclaimed to be one of the great, albeit disturbing, visionary works of western civilization, Joseph Conrad's haunting tale dramatizes the stark realities of Africa in the colonial period. Heart of Darkness reflects the physical and psychological tragedies that Conrad had experienced while working in the Belgian Congo in 1890. It is also the basis of Francis Ford Coppola's Academy Award-winning film Apocalypse Now.

Publisher: New York : Penguin Books, 1999
ISBN: 9781400128464
Branch Call Number: eAudiobook
Characteristics: 1 sound file : digital
audio file
Additional Contributors: OverDrive, Inc


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May 16, 2013

This is one of the worst audiobooks I have ever listened to. First, the production is bad. There is inconsistent normalization between the tracks so one track is loud, the next is quiet. And then the tracks are not in the right order. I thought the non-linear narrative was part of the message of the novel (20th Century disorientation) but instead it is the result of someone not being able to count in order.

Secondly, Scott Brick's narration is poor. It is annoying at the best of times; it sounds like he is trying to impress you with how well he reads "litter-a- tour" with his breathy delivery. Also, there is little or no distinction in the voices - is Marlowe talking? Or Kurtz? Or Kurtz's Intended? - but the most annoying aspect of the narration is Brick's accents. Is Marlowe American, Cockney or Australian? For instance, in one sentence, he pronounces "'ead" (head) like a cockney and later hits both "r"s in "murder" hard like a mid-Westerner.

If you are interested in "the Horror", read Stanely's biography at http://ottawa.bibliocommons.com/item/show/483589026_stanley instead.


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