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    Description

    The trials of Dr. Daniel Waterhouse and the Natural Philosophers increase one hundredfold in an England plagued by the impending war and royal insecurities, as the beautiful and ambitious Eliza plays a most dangerous game as double agent and confidante of enemy kings.

    The Baroque Cycle, Neal Stephenson’s award-winning series, spans the late 17th and early 18th centuries, combining history, adventure, science, invention, piracy, and alchemy into one sweeping tale. It is a gloriously rich, entertaining, and endlessly inventive historical epic populated by the likes of Isaac Newton, William of Orange, Benjamin Franklin, and King Louis XIV, along with some of the most inventive literary characters in modern fiction.

    Audible’s complete and unabridged presentation of The Baroque Cycle was produced in cooperation with Neal Stephenson. Each volume includes an exclusive introduction read by the author.

    Listen to more titles in the Baroque Cycle .
    ©2003 Neal Stephenson (P)2010 Audible, Inc.

    Commentaires

    “Rollicking good fun…Historical fiction driven by the history of ideas… Stephenson is a magnificent chronicler.” ( Wall Street Journal)
    “Sprawling, irreverent, and ultimately profound.” ( Newsweek)

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    Ce que les auditeurs disent de Odalisque

    Notations
    Global
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    Interprétation
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    Histoire
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    Commentaires - Veuillez sélectionner les onglets ci-dessous pour changer la provenance des commentaires.

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    • Global
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Interprétation
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Histoire
      5 out of 5 stars
    Image de profile pour Doug D. Eigsti
    • Doug D. Eigsti
    • 28/10/2014

    Imp of the Perverse Embodied in Brilliant Fiction

    This series must be contemplated as a unified whole. This review is for the entire BAROQUE CYCLE.

    Sorry Neal, I was wrong. For me Neal Stephenson was a bit of an acquired taste. My first Stephenson exposure was with SNOWCRASH, a zany over-the-top Sci-Fi farce with quirky characters, tight plotting and fascinating ideas—try an ancient software virus in the human brain. My next Neal Stephenson encounter was THE DIAMOND AGE and this was for years my last. It was not until revisiting SNOWCRASH now as an audiobook (narrated by the superb Jonathan Davis) that I realized that anyone able to reach such dizzying fictional heights once deserves more than one strike. It was after this that I listened to ANATHEM; strike two. But there was one more title that had received acclaim that I first had to tackle before relegating Stephenson to one-hit-wonder status: CRYPTONOMICON. This was a home run; different from SNOWCRASH in almost every way but still wonderful, and really long. From this I learned three things: (1) Stephenson was not easy to pigeon-hole; and (2) He could handle fictional works in the long form; and (3) If you are not preoccupied with plot advancement, the rabbit trails can be quite scenic. So, once I learned that many of the characters in CRYPTONOMICON had ancestors in THE BAROQUE CYCLE, I determined to tackle the whole lot back-to-back, as if it were one giant novel. QUICKSILVER is the first audio installment of THE BAROQUE CYCLE, which is here divided into seven installments. In print form it is broken into eight books published in three hefty volumes.

    I could tell from the comments of other listeners that this huge tome is not for everyone. If you require fast tight plotting, this may not be for you. If you enjoy witty repartee between vagabonds, kings, courtiers and thieves then this may be the mother lode. I liken Neal Stephenson to Gene Wolfe; another writer who can keep my interest just by the brilliance of his prose. It was in the middle of ODALISQUE, book three in the cycle, that I realized I didn’t much care that the plot was just creeping along, and that side trips to follow the numerous cast of characters kept taking me away from the one I liked best. I was enjoying the show and didn’t want it to end. This is truly not seven different novels, but one huge novel tied together by recurring characters and one vast and very satisfying story arc.

    This accomplishment by Neal Stevenson is just the thing that the term magnum opus was coined for. Mr. Stevenson demonstrates his ability to manage a vast narrative alternate history and retains his focus over two-thousand six-hundred eighty-eight hardcover pages, through one-hundred fourteen hours of audiobook narration; yet the feel and texture and pacing is consistent throughout the entire work. Amazing. If you decide to tackle this tome you will be rewarded. It may cause you to rethink the whole audiobook medium.

    I really enjoyed Stephenson’s insights into the politics of the scientific community, revolving around Isaac Newton. The fusing of Natural Philosophy (science), Alchemy, commodity-based monetary theory, rags-to-riches character transformations, and court intrigue make for a fascinating experience. Listening to this series is like taking a time-travel vacation to the eighteenth century. The shabby, muddy, miasmic grunge of the period’s living conditions sometimes remind me of Monty Python and the Holy Grail or Jabberwocky, with associated punch-lines. This is a very different world from the one we live in but I began to think I might understand it a little better and found that, in some ways, it might not be so bad.

    If you are at all interested in free-market economics, and commodity-based monetary theory then one of the long-term story arcs will be of intense interest to you. Stevenson explores the impact of the foundation of the central Bank of England upon the flow of gold. And his deft insertion of an Alchemical component into the mix creates an enjoyable element of mystery. This is the storyline that required one-hundred hours to tell.

    This is a Science Fiction work because the alternate-history angle with Alchemy infecting the realm of science will appeal to the SF fan. If you were provided with a plot outline or given some character sketches you may think this an historical novel, and it could be read from that perspective. But Science Fiction readers don’t as a rule read historical novels, but they will read this, therefore, whatever qualities it possesses, justify the SF label.

    —PERSISTENT THEMES OF THE BAROQUE CYCLE—
    Predestination versus Free-Will is on everyone’s mind
    The debate between Protestantism versus Catholicism had a huge political impact
    Geocentrism versus Heliocentrism is the only thing everyone can agree upon
    Commodity-based Monetary theory makes the world work
    Court Intrigue and witty conversations provide joy in every circumstance
    Meritocracy rags-to-riches stories abound
    People can endure much if they have hope
    Vagabond underworld versus Persons of Quality show we have much in common
    Alchemy counterpoised with Natural Philosophy revel the nature of science
    Encryption and secret writing have long been employed
    True love makes life worth living
    Courtly liaisons show the shallowness of the ruling class to whom society is entrusted

    Simon Prebble does yeoman’s work on this production. To my ear he nailed every single pronunciation of every word in the course of over one-hundred hours of narration—no mean feat. His character voicings are subtle but immediately recognizable. His talent allows him to even give convincing alternate pronunciations of words to the different characters that are appropriate to their individual personalities. The more foppish English characters habitually emphasize different syllables than the lower class characters. Despite the deep quality of his voice Simon Prebble handles both male and female character voices convincingly. His voice has a limited range but I was constantly amazed at how he could make subtle alterations in inflection, diction and pacing to effectively distinguish the various characters in a conversation. Simon Prebble achieves the desirable state of occupying the place in your head usually reserved for your own internal sub-vocalizations when you are reading a print book to yourself. This is a high achievement indeed and makes this a soothing book experience.

    Narrated by Simon Prebble (Main text)
    Kevin Pariseau (Chapter epigraphs)
    Katherine Kellgrin (Eliza’s letters)
    Neal Stephenson (Introduction)

    16 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      4 out of 5 stars
    Image de profile pour Evelyn
    • Evelyn
    • 25/05/2011

    Great book

    I found the addition of Katherine Kellgren as Eliza in the third book a little jarring, after having gotten used to Simon Prebble doing Eliza's voice in the two previous books (and doing a seamless job of it, too.)

    Kellgren's Eliza is a touch too arch, too insufferably prissy; not how I imagined Eliza to be. It makes the numerous readings of Eliza's correspondence in this book three of the cycle seem interminable. This stands out because, though this is a ridiculously long work, I rarely lose patience with its length - and I remember reading through the correspondence sections of the third book without any impatience or sense of 'slogging through'.

    I think her voice is just a bit too much, like trying to make an entire meal of lemon bars. Makes you long for plain bread. I'm hoping this effect lessens as the books go on.

    11 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      3 out of 5 stars
    • Interprétation
      1 out of 5 stars
    • Histoire
      3 out of 5 stars
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    • Darwin8u
    • 02/07/2018

    One Star for Making me Buy (1/3) of a Book

    "Even a well-made clock drifts, and must be re-set from time to time."
    - Neal Stephenson, Odalisque

    An odalisque was a chambermaid or a female attendant in a Turkish haram (seraglio), particularly the ladies in haram of the Ottoman sultan.

    So, the book title references Eliza, who in book 2: King of the Vagabonds is rescued by "Half-Cock" Jack (King of the Vagabonds). Eliza in this book enters the world of European economics and spycraft. She rises from broker of the French nobility, eventually earning the title of Countess of Zeur. She also aids William of Orange as he prepares to invade England, gaining the added title of Duchess of Qqghlm. Odalisque also brings us back to Daniel Waterhouse.

    I personally missed Jack Shaftoe, but that was partially assisted because we were introduced to his brother Bob Shaftoe.

    I've enjoyed Volume one. I'm a big fan of the Age of Enlightenment and was thrilled to experience of fictionalized Pepys, Newton, Leibniz, William of Orange, etc.

    The only reason I'm giving this a 1-star for performance is I find it RI·DIC·U·LOUS that I have to buy three credits worth of books to listen to 'Quicksilver'. It seems a bit like William Morrow & Co is milking the structure of this book a bit.

    4 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Interprétation
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Histoire
      5 out of 5 stars
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    • Tim
    • 22/02/2014

    Volume One, Finished

    "Odalisque" is the last book in the first volume and there are two more volumes to go. I'm not too sure why Audible decided to split up the three volumes into eight books, but so far, the third book is my favorite. The story is finally moving along in Baroque Cycle.

    Unlike Quicksilver, which was basically the premise, and King of the Vagabonds, which was explaining the day wagers, Odalisque goes back at exams the hierarchy of the monarch. The story between of Daniel and Eliza makes it more compelling to read. The best part of this chapter in the series is the science and astronomy from Newton and his peers.

    In any series that I listens to, at certain point I need to read something else because after the third book, I loose interest. Maybe because I'm a fan of Stephenson or been waiting to read Baroque Cycle, I'm powering through these books and can't wait for more.

    4 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      4 out of 5 stars
    • Interprétation
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Histoire
      4 out of 5 stars
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    • Philip Criswell
    • 09/03/2017

    Still can't figure out whether I like this series...

    Like the others, hard to start, easy to finish, and I look forward to the next one.

    1 personne a trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Interprétation
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Histoire
      5 out of 5 stars
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    • Amazon Customer
    • 09/11/2016

    Outstanding Book - Excellent Presentation

    This was a very well written book. Great information, humor, and presentation. I will listen to them all.

    1 personne a trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Interprétation
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Histoire
      5 out of 5 stars
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    • PJ
    • 13/05/2016

    Great followup to king of the vagabonds

    Loved it. But then I am a Neal Stephenson fan. The plot and all the little nuanced details are fantastic. The characters started in the second book are developed in to intriguing and engrossing ones in this book. Daniel remains at the core of the story here like in the first book.
    Personally I felt there was too little of Newton in this book hopefully it will be made up in the next one.
    The narrators are brilliant and kept the book interesting all through
    Overall a top read.

    1 personne a trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      4 out of 5 stars
    • Interprétation
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Histoire
      3 out of 5 stars
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    • Sylvia
    • 16/03/2015

    A little slow to start...

    Would you listen to Odalisque again? Why?

    It is a great story that has characters pulled from history - but that means that a large part of this is about filling the reader in on the historical context in which certain event and characters are important. This is not a story for people who want instant gratification - but it is still a very good read.

    1 personne a trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      3 out of 5 stars
    • Interprétation
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Histoire
      3 out of 5 stars
    Image de profile pour Julie W. Capell
    • Julie W. Capell
    • 16/11/2014

    It's the journey, not the destination

    I think listening to this as an audio book is probably the very best way to experience it. There are long stretches that are letters written by Eliza, which by their nature involved long explanations of things Eliza had done. I wish the author had simply shown Eliza interacting with people and her environment, since she is such an unusual and compelling female protagonist. Seeing her primarily through her letters made her feel more distant, although she does explain lots of interesting things about early commerce, such as how insurance began (Lloyd's was originally a coffee shop!), how to be an effective spy, and how to use binary code encrypted in needlepoint to send coded messages. Still, I found my mind drifting at times, and thought more than once that if I had been reading this as a hard copy book, I probably would have given up. But the audio performers do a lovely job of pulling the listener along on this fantastic voyage, in much the same way that a really good Shakespearean actor can make you understand the meaning of what is being said, even if you don't comprehend every word.

    3 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      3 out of 5 stars
    • Interprétation
      4 out of 5 stars
    • Histoire
      3 out of 5 stars
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    • Kevin
    • 17/10/2014

    Entertaining series

    I got into this series reading Locus award winners for SCI-FI . Not sure how this series got there. I also did not realize there were 8 books (only three won awards). And then to find out that this is really sort of three books (long ones) broken into 8 books...one can't keep track. This book was covers some pretty interesting historical events and is quite interesting.

    The performance is great - the reader gives unique personalities to all the characters. Overall its a pretty good read.

    1 personne a trouvé cela utile

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    • Global
      1 out of 5 stars
    • Interprétation
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Histoire
      5 out of 5 stars
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    • André
    • 20/10/2019

    Nur 1/3 des Buches und halbierte Audioqualität!

    Leider gibt es die Barock Triologie nicht auf Deutsch - also auf Englisch. Dies ist jedoch nur ein Drittel des ersten Buches!
    Wenn ich in einen Buchladen gehe und die komplette Buchreihe kaufe, werde ich mit drei Büchern den Laden verlassen. Egal ob ich die Bücher auf Deutsch oder Englisch kaufe.

    Zur Verdeutlichung hier eine Übersicht der gesamten Reihe:

    The Baroque Cycle 1 - Quicksilver
    - Book 1: Quicksilver
    - Book 2: King of the Vagabonds
    - Book 3: Odalisque

    The Baroque Cycle 2 - The Confusion
    - Book 4: Bonanza
    - Book 5: The Juncto

    The Baroque Cycle 3 - The System of the World
    - Book 6: Solomon's Gold
    - Book 7: Currency
    - Book 8: The System of the World

    Warum also werden hier nicht acht Hörbücher angeboten? Ganz einfach: Im ersten Band (Quicksilver) und im dritten Band (The System of the World) kommen die Bücher nacheinander. Im zweiten Band (The Confusion) sind die Bücher 4 und 5 gemischt.

    Ich empfinde das als reine Geldschneiderei, EIN Buch sollte als EIN Hörbuch angeboten werden! So jedenfalls habe ich mein Audible Abo verstanden! Ein Buch im Monat, nicht ein Drittel Buch...

    Was mich ebenfalls sehr ärgert ist die halbierte Klangqualität die sehr an eine 70er Jahre Telefonverbindung erinnert!
    Ein Blick in die technischen Daten offenbart:
    Audio: aac, 22050 Hz, stereo, 62 kb/s - Normal wäre: 44100 Hz, stereo, 125 kb/s

    Halbierter Frequenzbereich und halbierte Bitrate, was auch deutlich zu hören ist - und ja, ich habe beim Download "Beste Qualität" ausgewählt.

    Für den vollen Preis finde ich das ziemlich unverschämt, daher nur einen Stern in der Gesamtbewertung.

    2 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Interprétation
      3 out of 5 stars
    • Histoire
      5 out of 5 stars
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    • Oaito
    • 26/09/2019

    Awesome story, strong voices, liked Neal S. better

    The earlier parts, read by the author, left way more room for the own imagination while also creating an inspiring athmosphere. Especially the womans voice bothered me, not in itself, but due to being far from what I had in mind. Perhaps you like it even better, try for yourself, story is awesome!