A Sentimental Journey Through France and Italy

Read by Martin Geeson

(4.5 stars; 24 reviews)

After the bizarre textual antics of "Tristram Shandy", this book would seem to require a literary health warning. Sure enough, it opens in mid-conversation upon a subject never explained; meanders after a fashion through a hundred pages, then fizzles out in mid-sentence - so, a plotless novel lacking a beginning, a middle or an end. Let us say: an exercise in the infinitely comic.

"There is not a secret so aiding to the progress of sociality, as to get master of this short hand, and to be quick in rendering the several turns of looks and limbs with all their inflections and delineations, into plain words."

Sterne calls his fine sensitivity to body language (as we now term it) "translation". Much of the pleasure to be had from this wonderfully engaging book comes from his unmatched ability to extract random details from the chaos of experience to create comic turns imbued with Feeling. His Parson Yorick is the Sentimental Traveller: certainly a Man of Feeling, but one in whom "Nature has so wove her web of kindness, that some threads of love and desire are entangled with the piece..." (Summary by Martin Geeson) (5 hr 59 min)


01 - "They order, said I, this matter better..." 16:38 Read by Martin Geeson
02 - Preface. In the Desobligeant. 12:23 Read by Martin Geeson
03 - "I perceived that something darken'd..." 12:59 Read by Martin Geeson
04 - "This, certainly, fair lady! said I..." 15:38 Read by Martin Geeson
05 - "Having, on first sight of the lady..." 11:57 Read by Martin Geeson
06 - "I never finished a twelve-guinea bargain..." 14:37 Read by Martin Geeson
07 - "As La Fleur went the whole tour..." 15:26 Read by Martin Geeson
08 - "Having settled all these little matters..." 14:23 Read by Martin Geeson
09 - "The words were scarce out..." 16:54 Read by Martin Geeson
10 - "When a man can contest..." 14:30 Read by Martin Geeson
11 - "I had counted twenty pulsations..." 15:11 Read by Martin Geeson
12 - "I had never heard the remark..." 15:54 Read by Martin Geeson
13 - "What the old French officer had..." 10:27 Read by Martin Geeson
14 - "When I got home to my hotel..." 15:25 Read by Martin Geeson
15 - "The bird in his cage..." 14:41 Read by Martin Geeson
16 - "Before I had got half-way..." 12:48 Read by Martin Geeson
17 - "I found no difficulty in..." 19:22 Read by Martin Geeson
18 - "And how do you find the French?" 16:37 Read by Martin Geeson
19 - "If a man knows the heart..." 13:43 Read by Martin Geeson
20 - "It was Sunday; and when La Fleur..." 10:05 Read by Martin Geeson
21 - "Now as the notary's wife..." 12:57 Read by Martin Geeson
22 - "The man who either disdains..." 17:57 Read by Martin Geeson
23 - "I never felt what the distress..." 12:46 Read by Martin Geeson
24 - "There was nothing from which..." 10:32 Read by Martin Geeson
25 - "When you have gained the top..." 15:55 Read by Martin Geeson


Excellent recording and original book

(5 stars)

Travel writing beacame the dominant genre of the second half of the 18th century. But Sterne’s novel emphasized personal taste and sentiments at the expense of facts and classical learning. The narrator is the Reverend Mr. Yorick, probably Sterne's alter ego. The book recounts his various adventures, usually of the amorous type, in a series of self-contained episodes. Very entertaining and witty; extremely well read by Martin Geeson. Many thanks for his performance!

Brilliant reading!

(5 stars)

Mr. Geeson's readings for LibriVox are exceptionally attuned to the music of each sentence; his Sterne captures what must surely have been the author's own voice! His Confessions of an English Opium Eater is extremely sensitive to the author's sorrow and dignity.


(5 stars)

Mr. Geeson is a very talented reader. The book was fun and interesting if you can deal with the time period in which it was written. You may find that boys haven’t changed much over the years.

well read

(5 stars)

Martin Geeson reads well even though the narrative itself only gets three stars from me

A perfect match

(5 stars)

One cannot imagine another to sound this piece of work, very well done sir.


(5 stars)

A reader perfectly matched with his author. Extraordinary.