Saturday, June 17, 2006

AUDIOBOOK: Daddy Long Legs on LibriVox

Just finished Daddy Long Legs by Jean Webster on LibriVox. It's also available as text file on the Project Gutenberg site.

This is one of my all time favorite books. I loved it as a teen and re-reading it now, it still appeals to me. The book is written as a epistletory (written as letters from one character to another) romance. An institutionalized orphan, Jerusha aka Judy Abbott, is sent off to college by an anonymous benefactor. She is to write one letter a month reporting on her educational progress. But the letters turn into much more than a formal report as the heroine turns all her suppressed familial longings upon the unknown man who has lifted her out of poverty.

On LibriVox, books come either as solo projects that are read by a single reader, or as group projects, where different sections or chapters are read by different readers. DLL was a group project. Now I'm used to commercial audio books and the other audio books that I've listened to online have been solo projects, so having the different readers took some getting used to. And their expertise does vary from section to section.

The other issue with both the audio book and Project G text file is that the original book is adorned with a number of little line drawings that Judy included in her letters to 'Daddy'. Of course, neither the audio or plain text file format can include them and if the listener/reader didn't know about the original book, they'd be totally lost when Judy refers to her sketches.

Still, it's nice to know that some of my childhood favorites have withstood the test, not only of time, but of my growing as a person and a reader.

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