Saturday, June 30, 2007

The Legend of Sleepy Hollow by Washington Irving (Audio Book)

Title: The Legend of Sleepy Hollow
Washington Irving
Narrator: Chip

Publisher: Librivox

First Published: 1820

Running time: 1 hr 23 min 23 sec

Format: Audio Book

Rating: 7/10

The story is set circa 1790 in the Dutch settlement of
Tarry Town, New York, in a secluded glen called Sleepy Hollow. It tells the story of Ichabod Crane, a priggish schoolmaster from Connecticut, who competes with Abraham "Brom Bones" Van Brunt, the town rowdy, for the hand of eighteen-year-old Katrina Van Tassel, daughter of a wealthy farmer. As Crane leaves a party at the Van Tassel home on an autumn night, he is pursued by the Headless Horseman, supposedly the ghost of a Hessian trooper who lost his head during "some nameless battle" of the American Revolutionary War and who "rides forth to the scene of battle in nightly quest of his head." Crane disappears from town, leaving Katrina to marry Brom Bones, who was "to look exceedingly knowing whenever the story of Ichabod was related.”

This was another one read by Chip (who also read parts of Fanny Hill) who has a wonderfully atmospheric voice and is the master of pregnant pauses!

The writing of this story is wonderfully rich and his telling of it was chilling. It's wonderful how the superstitious hero (Ichabod Crane) is chilled by the legend of the Headless Horseman and then becomes a part of the legend himself.

Excellently exciting, even almost 200 years after it was written; this has stood the test of time and is filled with dark humour as well as psychological terror.


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