Readalong: Bleak House, instalment 4, ch11-13

The fourth instalment of Bleak House, by Charles Dickens consists of Chapters 11 to 13, and was originally published in June 1852.

Are you reading along? What do you think of the book?

At the moment, I am luxuriating in an audio version from Naxos, which has both a male and a female narrator (Sean Barrett and Teresa Gallagher), reflecting the narrative angles in the book. The change in pace between the two is very effective—much more so, I find, than in the print version—and the characterisation is superb. Esther seems less annoying and more characterful “in the flesh” (from an audio perspective) than as mere words on the page.

The duration of the audiobook as a whole gives a real sense of the gargantuan size of Bleak House — this particular recording runs for 35 hours and 14 minutes. It’s just as well that we are tackling only a small chunk each month! But I am enjoying the audio version so much that I find it hard to make myself stop listening at the end of the allotted chapters.

For our previous discussions on Bleak House, see:

Do join in! You can download the full text of Bleak House from Project Gutenberg and Standard Ebooks, and audiobook versions are available from LibriVox.