Went to Paris at the beginning of the month to give a talk at the Center for Writers and Translators at the American University in Paris. Elena Devos, a Russian poet who has translated two of my stories, very kindly let me stay for several days after this engagement; we walked around one day with her husband Ludo and 7-year-old son Nico, and came upon the Librairie Polonaise/Ksiegarnia Polska at 123 boulevard Saint-Germain.
We went in and looked around. I thought that if I had an audiobook in Polish and the text to go with it this might help me get a feel for Polish. They had a few audiobooks, including one of The Name of the Rose (Imię Róży), the text of which was also available in Polish translation. In a less imperfect world I would have been able to get an audiobook of Bajki robotów, but I couldn't, and the Eco translation seemed a reasonable place to start.
Have just been playing CD1 on my laptop, and it is FABULOUS. In the voice of the reader, Krzysztof Gosztyła, the language is like whisky and dark chocolate. The audiobook does exactly what I had hoped an audiobook would do: it gets me past the glamorous words on the page to the sound of the sentences (no less glamorous, it turns out, than the text).
The audiobook is available from noir sur blanc (www.noir.pl/ksiazka/513/Umberto-Eco-Imie-rozy---audiobook). A steal at 31.43 zlotys. The text is available in volume form or as ebook.
As so often, I see that life would be easier if I had moved over to WordPress years ago. It may be possible to upload an mp3 file on Blogger, but if so I'm not sure how. Have therefore posted a brief extract on pp's WordPress sibling, here. (Hoping this will not outrage noir sur blanc, as the extract can only encourage listeners to buy the whole thing.)