Review Room

Book reviews and miscellanous thoughts

Audiobook Review : The Remains Of The Day by Kazuo Ishiguro

Written By: amodini - Jul• 15•15

Remains of the DayTitle : The Remains of The Day
Author : Kazuo Ishiguro
Narrator : Simon Prebble
Genre : Contemporary
Publisher : Tantor Audio
Listening Length : 8 hours 13 minutes
Rating : 5/5
Narrator Rating : 5/5

This is one of those books that you come across every once in a while, harried and unsatisfied by all these other tomes that have come much recommended, and resolving to read only Booker and Pulitzer prize winners 🙂 hereon. I chanced upon this audiobook when I really wanted to read something surefire – something so outstanding, that it would keep me from wandering off mentally while it played.

It did, and how.

The Remains of The Day is the story of Stevens, a very proper butler at Darlington Hall, a great English Manor. Darlington Hall is now owned by an American Mr. Farraday, who seems to be a very nice man. Steven has served at Darlington Hall from its heydays under Lord Darlington himself, and now muses over the shut-off rooms and the reduced staff. When the egalitarian Mr. Farraday offers him the use of his car for a road trip, Stevens decides to avail himself of the opportunity to travel and meet a female associate Ms. Kenton.

The narrative is first-person, and the story is told via Steven’s reminiscences as he ponders over the past, while traveling through the English countryside. Stevens considers his life well spent in the service of Lord Darlington. He seems venerable and as he ruminates in his most proper English about professionalism, dignity, courage and life-changing decisions, we almost take him for his word. As the novel progresses, Ishiguro reveals Stevens’s character layer by layer so we come to understand his life better. And so beautifully is this done, that you are drawn into this lovely tale of self-realization, empathizing and feeling for this lonely butler.

This book talks about life, a profound subject, in a simple and dignified manner. Very few authors manage to convey themselves as elegantly as Ishiguro. It is then truly wonderful then that the narrator is just as accomplished. Simon Prebble’s stately voice lends dignity and poise to Stevens’s very proper butler. Prebble talks very calmly since Stevens himself is very conscious of diction and decorum, and is quite spectacular in his rendition.

This beautiful book has my highest recommendation and regard.

You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

%d bloggers like this: