Reviews for Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone


AudioFile Reviews 1999 December/2000 January
If you haven't heard of Harry Potter then you haven't turned on your TV or radio or opened a newspaper in the last few months. For the uninitiated, Harry is a young orphan who is living with his nasty relatives when he's summoned to claim his magical heritage by attending Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. What could be better (or more satisfying to children) than studying, not English and chemistry, but Potions and Defense-Against-the-Dark-Arts? Jim Dale, with his fully voiced reading, brings the world of wizards to life in ways unimagined even by those who have read and re-read the book. The accents are sure, the inflections perfectly suit the characters, and some of Rowling's particularly inventive bits, like the game of Quidditch, become clearer. Sometimes poignant, often funny, Dale's interpretation of this enchanted other world is the consummate family-listening experience. S.G. Winner of AUDIOFILE Earphones Award. ¬ AudioFile, Portland, Maine

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BookPage Reviews 1999 December
December 1999 Sukey Howard Let's hear it for the holidays

Nothing could be hotter than a tape of Harry Potter, and now Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (8 hours) - the first of J.K. Rowling's wildly best-selling series, the one that started the craze and clamor - is on tape and at the top of my holiday gift list. Children first, then adults, fell under Ms. Rowling's spell and fell into her magical world of witches and wizards, trolls and goblins, centaurs and unicorns, wands and flying broomsticks. And Harry is an ever-appealing, classic hero - only a boy and pitted against dark forces that would dismay and defeat a lesser soul. It's hard to know exactly what makes this tale of derring-do so compelling, but now that I've been initiated, I'm just wild about Harry. Reader Jim Dale, who conjures up the perfect voice for each character with a sorcerer's ease, may just be a wizard himself.

Sukey Howard reports on spoken word audio each month.

Copyright 1999 BookPage Reviews

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Publishers Weekly Reviews 1999 October #2
With more than seven million copies of Sorcerer's Stone and its two sequels sold in the U.S. in a year's time, it would be hard to find many school-age children who haven't at least heard of Harry Potter. British author Rowling's tales of a young wizard-in-training who attends the unusual Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry have enchanted children (and their parents, too) like no books before them. Now, with this sharp audio production, those who haven't yet met Harry will soon be swept up in the fun, and established Potter fans will delight in hearing Harry's adventures anew. British actor and Broadway star Dale is an inspired choice as narrator, reading with a light, assured air that makes Harry's fantastic, sometimes dangerous, world very real, while never losing sight of Rowling's humorous underpinnings. His numerous vocal characterizations are dead-on, especially his fast-talking take on Harry's sweet but overachieving witch friend Hermione Granger. A gruff and sensitive Hagrid (the school's gamekeeper), evil Malfoy, kindly Dumbledore and appropriately Scottish Professor McGonagall are also crisply distinctive. The combination of Rowling's exquisitely evocative writing and Dale's nimble reading make this a magical addition to the bewitching Harry Potter canon. All ages. (Oct.) Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.

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Publishers Weekly Reviews 1999 November #1
With more than seven million copies of Sorcerer's Stone and its two sequels sold in the U.S. in a year's time, it would be hard to find many school-age children who haven't at least heard of Harry Potter. British author Rowling's tales of a young wizard-in-training who attends the unusual Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry have enchanted children (and their parents, too) like no books before them. Now, with this sharp audio production, those who haven't yet met Harry will soon be swept up in the fun, and established Potter fans will delight in hearing Harry's adventures anew. British actor and Broadway star Dale is an inspired choice as narrator, reading with a light, assured air that makes Harry's fantastic, sometimes dangerous, world very real, while never losing sight of Rowling's humorous underpinnings. His numerous vocal characterizations are dead-on, especially his fast-talking take on Harry's sweet but overachieving witch friend Hermione Granger. A gruff and sensitive Hagrid (the school's gamekeeper), evil Malfoy, kindly Dumbledore and appropriately Scottish Professor McGonagall are also crisply distinctive. The combination of Rowling's exquisitely evocative writing and Dale's nimble reading make this a magical addition to the bewitching Harry Potter canon. All ages. (Oct.) Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information. Copyright 1999 Publishers Weekly Reviews

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School Library Journal Reviews 2000 January
Gr 4-7-The magic of Harry Potter lives on in this superb unabridged recording of the first book in the popular fantasy series by J.K. Rowlings. This story of Harry's journey from his miserable home with his aunt and uncle to Hogwarts, the wizardry school where his destiny as a wizard of great potential is made known to him, is ideally suited for reading aloud. This audiobook pairs a good story with a high quality production, and the result is enjoyable. Narrator Jim Dale's English accent and warm, expressive voice create a sense of atmosphere which will enchant listeners of all ages. The reading brings the characters to life, as Dale's voice recreates energetic Hermione, sulky Malfoy, and other characters with expert inflection and pacing. Listeners who have already read the print version book will enjoy hearing all of the magical vocabulary pronounced authoritatively and effortlessly by Dale. Likewise, children who have struggled with the invented names and other "magical" vocabulary in the series may get more enjoyment out of reading the book with audio accompaniment. With the bestseller status of the Harry Potter series, and the high quality of this audio production, this recording deserves a place in all audio collections.-Carolyn Schemick Bailey, Conerly Road School, Somerset, NJ Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.

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School Library Journal Reviews 1999 August
Gr 4-7-Harry's terrible life with his wretched aunt and uncle changes with the arrival of a mysterious letter that carries with it an invitation to an astonishing place. By J.K. Rowling. Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.

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