cover image The Greater Journey: Americans in Paris

The Greater Journey: Americans in Paris

David McCullough, read by Edward Herrmann and David McCullough. Simon & Schuster Audio, unabridged, 16 CDs, 17 hrs., $29.95 ISBN 978-1-4423-4418-1

This detailed and riveting book from award-winning historian McCullough traces the lives of several high-profile Americans%E2%80%94including Oliver Wendell Holms, Ralph Waldo Emerson, and Mark Twain%E2%80%94who, in the 19th century, found themselves in Paris. McCullough limns the impact that Parisian sojourns had upon these travelers and contrasts their lives in France with events occurring in the United States. Co-narrator (and actor) Edward Herrmann provides a stronger narration than the author, however. While McCullough, with his deep voice, grabs listeners' attention initially, he lacks the ability to maintain that interest, as his emphasis, tone, and energy wears over time. Herrmann's ability, on the other hand, to emphasize different facts through deliberate speech and tone, while moving more quickly through less complicated material, makes listening enjoyable and easygoing. A Simon & Schuster hardcover. (May)