Friday, February 26, 2010

The Gormenghast Trilogy by Mervyn Peake [Audiobook Inspection]

Size: 628 MB (
Length: 43hours, 48 minutes (no that's not a typo. 44 hours)
Author: Mervyn Peake
Narrator: Robert Whitfield

Plot Sketch: What plot? There really wasn't a lot of story. There was an immense amount of time dedicated to world building and developing unimportant characters, but the entire story could have been written and covered in four hours. If I tell you more than that, it's a spoiler, so I'm caught in a 22 here. Basically, Titus is born, Steerpike is furthering himself by any means possible in hopes of gaining power, Titus's dad goes nuts, Titus grows up, leaves home, has identity crisis.

Plot Verdict: No Love. This was a waste of my time. I wasted almost two whole days of my life listening to this trilogy. I kept listening in hopes that something would happen, but alas, there is no plot. The characters are overdeveloped and pointless to the tiny bit of plot there is, foreshadowed events that never happen, and the first two books don't even apply to the third. The first two were a waste of time. The most exciting part of the story happens at the end of the second book, where things should have just ended. The only good thing I have to say is that the author has an incredible vocabulary and is very talented at formulating wonderfully creative sentences. Too bad those sentences never turn into a story. This is the only book I've ever sworn at. I actually beat the steering wheel while listening to it.

Narration Verdict: I Heart It. The narrator did a good job. Because of the varied assortment of words used, a lot of people would have had a hard time getting through some parts of the story. (I use the term story loosely for lack of a better term) There were so many characters introduced that eventually he had a hard time coming up with a different voice for all of them and some ended up sounding the same, but that's hardly his fault.

People Who Might Like This: people who really just want a well-developed world, people who enjoy robust vocabularies, people who are trying to go to sleep.
People Who Probably Won't Like This: 99.8% of humans, people who like plot, people who don't like details


La Coccinelle said...

I first heard about these books when they were made into a miniseries back in 2000. I got bored with the on-screen version, so I'm pretty sure I wouldn't like the books, either.

Thanks for the review!

Ella Press said...

sounds like i wouldn't like it, lol
and 44 hours? wow. congrats for having stuck with it until the end!