Selections from Sketches by Boz

4 CDs. library ed. abridged. 4¾ hrs. Naxos Audiobooks. 2012. ISBN 9781843796008. $28.98; 4 CDs. retail ed.; digital download. CLASSIC
Dickens immediately is associated with long, serialized novels and moralistic Christmas tales. The sketches here are earlier works that constitute his first published stories. Like his later writings, they contain detailed descriptions of 19th-century London combined with humor and social commentary. Not bad, but not nearly as engaging or powerful as his later novels.
VERDICT David Timson, a prolific and popular audiobook reader with a beautifully mannered tone, delivers a competent and enjoyable reading. However, a narrator with a stronger street voice might have been a more dynamic choice. Recommended for fans of Dickens and/or 19th-century British fiction.
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