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jenn

Murder by Death

I read cozy and historical mysteries, a bit of Paranormal/UF, and to mix it up, I read science and gardening books on occasion.

As You Wish

As You Wish: Inconceivable Tales from the Making of The Princess Bride - Joe Layden, Cary Elwes, Andy Scheinman, Rob Reiner, Christopher Guest, Carol Kane, Robin Wright, Wallace Shawn, Chris Sarandon, Norman Lear, Billy Crystal

I would have liked this book better in print.  A narrator can make or break a book, and in this case, the narration did a bit of both.  Listening, rather than reading, made it hard to gloss over those parts of the book that were weaker than others.  

 

What I didn't like:

Cary Elwes was disappointing as a narrator: he wrote this book so it should have felt like he was living it, and instead it felt like he was just reading someone else's third hand narrative.  

 

I've seen the movie twice now and I get what all the love is about; it's a great movie that totally stands up to time.  But Mr. Elwes went on and on about how special, how life-altering, how magical the filming of this movie was.  Had I been reading this, it probably wouldn't have stood out as much as it did because I would have started skimming over it.

 

The above applies as well to the importance of the sword fight.  In audio, it was over-kill; by the time the filming of the actual scene came up in the book I was so honestly sick of hearing about how important it was, how much training they had to do, how important!!!

 

The narrative sometimes felt a little ego-stroking; again, I think it wouldn't have come across this way in print, or even if Mr. Elwes read more naturally.

 

What I really, really liked:

Cary Elwes is pretty good at impersonations.  When he was reciting dialogue between two people, his narration improved exponentially - even when he flubbed an impersonation (I'm betting Pope John Paul II's accent was Polish, not Italian) the narration become more lively and interesting.  He nails Rob Reiner.

 

I loved (and this surprised me) the parts involving Andre the Giant.  I knew very little about Andre: he suffered gigantism and he was a wrestler.  I don't think it's possible to care less about something than I do about wrestling, which is why I was surprised.  He sounds like he was an incredible man, the kind you wish you could have met and gotten to know as a person, not a celebrity.

 

Having the individual actors narrate their own contributions kept it lively and interesting.

 

So, all-in-all, a solid 3 stars for me in audio format.