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The House of the Spirits

A Novel
Durée : 18 h et 51 min
4 out of 5 stars (1 notation)

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Description

The unforgettable first novel that established Isabel Allende as one of the world's most gifted and imaginative storytellers.

The House of the Spirits brings to life the triumphs and tragedies of three generations of the Trueba family. The patriarch Esteban is a volatile, proud man whose voracious pursuit of political power is tempered only by his love for his delicate wife, Clara, a woman with a mystical connection to the spirit world. When their daughter, Blanca, embarks on a forbidden love affair in defiance of her implacable father, the result is an unexpected gift to Esteban: his adored granddaughter, Alba, a beautiful and strong-willed child who will lead her family and her country into a revolutionary future.

One of the most important novels of the 20th century, The House of the Spirits is an enthralling epic that spans decades and lives, weaving the personal and the political into a universal story of love, magic, and fate.

©1982 Isabel Allende (P)2016 Simon & Schuster

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Notations

Global

  • 4 out of 5 stars
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Performance

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Histoire

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  • Global
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Cookie
  • 27/09/2016

Narrators spoil it

This is such a great story and I want so much to listen to the whole thing but the narrators are both distracting and monotonous at the same time.
The female narrator has a habit of reading to the end of a line as if there is a period then putting the wrong emphasis on the beginning of the next, as if it's a new sentence.
They both lack the acting nuances to pull off the emotion that is written so well in this book.
It's a darn shame.

43 sur 43 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Glen
  • 30/08/2016

Audio Presentation Lacked Enthusiasm!

The audio book would have been more interesting if presented by defferent narrators! The beginning was boring because of their almost monotone presenation. Towards the end they finally picked it up a notch and began to sound more enthusiastic!
The storyline was good. I enjoyed the ending emensly!!!

22 sur 22 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 28/06/2018

Slogging through uninspired narration

I listened to Elizabeth Pena's gorgeous, luscious reading of the Stories of Eva Luna before moving on to The House of the Spirits. Ms Pena gave such depth, vivacity, and life to Ms Allende's beautiful, descriptive, and poetic writing through her emotional intelligence and willingness to give the narration her all. Then I started The House of the Spirits and ... oh dear. I know now how important it is to read reviews. Others warned us all that the narration was difficult to listen to. It's uninspired and how anyone anywhere could take anything written by Isabel Allende and turn it into a monotonous chore is beyond me. The narrators have turned this into a dirge, a really boring dirge. No way of knowing which character is speaking, or when dialogue becomes prose. No emotional difference between what lovers say, what one says to the dead, or a grocery list. In my head, I repeat sentences in the voice of Elizabeth Pena: How would she have delivered this line, this sentiment, this description? I'm only a couple of hours into a 19-hour book and hope to finish it.... I just don't have the time in my life anymore to pick up a paper book and read it, so if I want to follow and finish the story, it's going to be through Audible, but, really, these narrators are uninspired.... :-(

12 sur 12 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    4 out of 5 stars
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  • robin w.
  • 08/08/2018

Narration speed

The normal narration speed is super slow. The audio sounds more natural if played on one of the slightly faster settings

5 sur 5 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    4 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • W Perry Hall
  • 09/04/2016

Passions/Politics of 3 Generations of Chilean Fam.


HOUSE OF THE SPIRITS is Isabel Allende's stunning saga of the Trueba family over 3 generations in Chile ending a few years after the government overthrow led by General Pinochet, the abhorrent right-wing dictator who, with the support of the US gov't, seized the chance opened by fears that the country would be taken over by Marxists.

Ms. Allende', who should soon be Chile's 3d Nobel Laureate in Literature, wrote the novel based loosely on her own family and nation. The novel's fictional characters and events follow closely the lives and times of Chile, Pinochet and Salvadore Allende, her first cousin, once removed, and Chile's socialist president at the time of the coup d'etat. Reports conflict over whether he was assassinated or committed suicide shortly after the coup commenced.

Incidentally, Chile's last Nobel Laureate (1971) was the famous poet Pablo Neruda, who died from poisoning 2 weeks after the coup, some believe upon Pinochet's orders due to Neruda's support of Marxist politicians. Likewise, Allende's fictional famed poet died under suspicious circumstances and his funeral is a significant event in the novel, as civilians on both the left and the right were severely shaken by his death, which foreshadowed several more years of a ruthless, murderous military regime.

Ms. Allende's prose is both graceful and readily comprehensible, as she chronicles a captivating, concinnous tale chiseled in history and filled with passions inflamed by family, politics and power, love and lust, malevolence and mysticism.


The audible edition of this outstanding novel was a long time coming. One would hope a publisher would realize the importance of an established, estimable narrator equal to the work's stature. Here, the patriarch's granddaughter narrated about 95% of the novel, with the rest by the patriarch. While I have nothing against Marisol Ramirez's voice (and am glad the publisher hired a Hispanic narrator), Ms. Ramirez read this spirited novel as if she were reminiscing over a rock collection at a recluse reunion.


Notwithstanding, I highly recommend this audiobook.

10 sur 12 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • neil
  • 07/10/2018

not big on the narrator

great story but the narrators didn't quite do for me. might have liked the book more otherwise

2 sur 2 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Cyn
  • 12/02/2019

Better read, perhaps.

I wish that I had read this instead of listening. There are so many characters and it covers so much time that I wanted to go back to check on previous events and people but that was not possible in the audible format.

1 sur 1 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Sponge Bob
  • 14/12/2018

This is my favorite book; female narrator sucked

I have waited for this book on audible FOR EVER!!!! Then to have this person just destroy the story with this presentation is so sad. I agree the pauses were annoying. However her reading this book as if she is reading to someone who is learning English as a second language and without any emotion is so heart wrenching. Her pronounciation is great; ‘A’ for effort. That is not the purpose of this audible book. I thought I could tolerate it and let the book stand on its own; it cannot. This is a beautiful story full of emotion and they chose a narrator that is castrated to read it. Plus her only spanish pronounciation of the names with her bland presentation is so absurd. I understand that I probably could not have done a better job. However, my job is not narrating. I expected the ending to have more of a flow to bring you back to the beginning like it should; instead, it just died. Please redo this great book with an actual narrator and do it the great justice it deserves. This is my favorite book and I am just heart broken that it has been done such a disservice.

1 sur 1 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • C. B.
  • 19/05/2016

Family saga brought to life

Loved it! Great narration, vivid descriptions, good and bad. Fascinating story. Can't wait to hear more by Isabel Allende.

1 sur 1 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Debbie Ocean
  • 09/04/2016

Family saga

Great story. Was very hard to stop listening. It was spellbinding. I experienced a range of emotions from sad to happy to angry.

2 sur 3 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

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  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Martina Arnold
  • 13/03/2018

Geballte chilenische Geschichte in 19 Stunden

Was für ein Buch! Und was für eine Frau! Am Ende hat es mich umgehauen. Isabel Allende hat in diesem Buch das Land Chile kurzerhand an einen fiktiven Ort verpflanzt. Ohne den Namen des Staates zu nennen, hat sie die chilenische Geschichte in einem Buch erzählt, beginnend mit dem vier Generationen in der Vergangenheit lebenden Urgroßvater Marco, der Magier, der Familie Trueba/del Valle bis hin zur Wahl Salvadore Allendes zum Präsidenten Chiles, seinem Tod und der danach herrschenden Milität-Junta. Ob oder dass Salvadore Allende sich selbst getötet hat, lässt sie offen. Aber sie erzählt anhand dieser Familiengeschichte die Sehnsucht der Chilenen nach Freiheit und Selbstbestimmung. Der Trueba-Teil der Familie stammt ursprünglich aus armen Verhältnissen. Die männliche Hauptfigur, Esteban Trueba, arbeitet in den Goldminen, kommt zu Vermögen, baut die herunter gekommene Hacienda Las Tres Marias wieder auf und heiratet in die reiche Familie del Valle. Seine ursprüngliche Verlobung mit Rosa, der schönsten Tochter der Familie, findet ein jähes Ende durch den Tod Rosas. Sie fällt einem ihrem Vater geltenden Vergiftungsanschlag zum Opfer. Ihr Vater war Politiker. Um das Versprechen seiner sterbenden Mutter gegenüber einzuhalten, heiratet Esteban die Schwester Rosas, Clara, die hellseherische Fähigkeiten hat.
Was soll ich weiter zum Inhalt sagen? Man muss das Buch gelesen haben, um zu verstehen, was für ein brilliantes Werk es ist. Allende erzählt souverän und wissend. Obwohl sie jegliche Parteinahme unterlässt, ist klar, auf wessen Seite sie politisch steht. Wenn man dem Text lauscht, bekommt man das Gefühl, verzaubert zu sein. Trotz äußerlich verworrener Familiengeschichten hört man mit Spannung zu und fühlt sich in die chilenische Welt versetzt, in das Land und in die Menschen, deren Lebens- und Denkweise. Zeitweilig hatte ich das Gefühl, Chile sei ein weit fortschrittlicheres Land als Deutschland, weil neues politisches Gedankengut viel schneller Fuß fast.
Isabel Allende erzählt vor allem warmherzig und bringt jeden Leser oder Hörer in ihren Bann. Ich hatte bereits vorher Bücher von ihr gelesen, aber ein richtiges Gefühl für den Menschen Isabel Allende hat sich erst hier entwickelt.
Thom Rivera und vor allem Marisol Ramirez erzählen genauso warm, wie Allende das Buch geschrieben hat. Obwohl ich teilweise auch das Gefühl hatte, die Story wird nur abgehandelt, passt das genau zum Schreibstil Allendes.
Isabel Allende ist es immer wert, gelesen zu werden. In diesem Buch hat sie meine Begeisterung zu den Chilenen großes Interesse in deren Geschichte geweckt. Und es ist ein Buch über starke Frauen.

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