Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, audio by Stephen Fry

I recently finished listening to Stephen Fry read Deathly Hallows. It was a book, that even on re-reading, I couldn't get through many chapters without a lot of tears. Listening to it, I found my self once again in tears over Dobby's death, the death of Fred, and all the others. The chapter when Kreacher tells his story was even more poignant when read aloud. As was Harry's meeting with his parents and Sirius and Remus in the forest and his final meeting with Dumbledore at King's Cross.

And then there was "The Prince's Tale", the chapter about Snape, the one that answered so many questions about the enigmatic potions master who finally achieved his heart's desire of being the Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher. Thinking back to the beginning of that year, when he started the class, he knew what was coming and yet went ahead with the plan that Dumbledore had laid out for them all, just as Harry chose to follow Dumbledore in the end.

It's a powerful book, and my favorite of the series. It's even more powerful when spoken. My only disappointment is that it is the one that I won't be able to listen to when I travel - it's a bit too hard to explain why you are suddenly crying when everything seems normal around you.

So, my thanks to Stephen Fry for reading all the seven Harry Potter books so well, and my thanks to my husband for buying them all for me.



Travis Prinzi said...

I still, sadly, do not have a copy of Stephen Fry's reading of the final book. I really need to get one. I have his first 6, but only the lesser reader for the final.

Beth said...

I've never heard the Stephen Fry readings. I suppose I should check to see if our library system has them. I just don't get much time to listen to audio these days!

I am, however, finally re-reading the series for the first time since my 2 readings of DH the summer it came out. Just finished Azkaban a couple of weeks ago and loved it again. I had to take a break at that point (family got sick, I got sick, and then I got behind with work) but I'm hoping to get to Goblet in April.

Eeyore said...

Sorry to hear you have been sick, Beth. That's not fun when the whole family gets whatever is going around.

It's not likely you'll find the Stehpen Fry ones in the library unless you are in Canada. Terry has been ordering them from the UK. If you are in the US and go to Amazon, then they offer the Jim Dale ones. Some people like him, but I wasn't impressed when I listened to him for a whole hour - it was on the PA in Borders when we were waiting for the midnight release of Order of the Phoenix.

And then I heard just a short clip of Stephen Fry - wow, what a difference. There are a few of the characters that I am not crazy about, but for the most part, I really like what he does with them.

Travis, you really do need to get DH by Fry. It's worth it.

The thing that is funny about Stephen Fry is how he very slightly changed the way he reads some of the parts after the movies came out - Snape is more like Rickman, but not completely. Fry started reading the books first, and the one that amazed me is that his Hagrid sounds just like Coltrane.

And I like the way he reads Dumbledore - can't really explain it, but he captures that special something about Dumbledore.

Antoinette said...

I definitely prefer Stephen Fry. Wish Amazon would accept Dutch gift-vouchers :p Oh well, just have to save a little longer.

George said...

Pat, any chance your husband would be generous enough to buy the cd's for the rest of us? :)

Anyway, I have the Fry versions for HPSS, COA, & POA. Found them on eBay & they weren't really cheap, especially converting dollars to pounds. Haven't tried to get the last three books in a Fry version yet although I do have them in the Dale versions.

Eeyore said...

George, lol, I wouldn't hold your breath waiting for Terry. He's enjoyed having something he knows I'll love as a gift, but I think he's also a bit tired of buying them. And yes, it's that conversion from pounds to dollars that is a shock. The price doesn't sound too bad until you do that.

I had a problem with one of the CDs in POA - you could see that it wasn't recorded properly, and they were so nice about replacing the whole thing promptly. They've been great to deal with. I'd order from them more if it weren't so pricey. He ordered from the audio book folks rather than through Amazon.