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Watership Down Audiobook

Watership Down

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Publisher's Summary

Fiver could sense danger. Something terrible was going to happen to the warren; he felt sure of it. They had to leave immediately. So begins a long and perilous journey of survival for a small band of rabbits. As the rabbits skirt danger at every turn, we become acquainted with the band, its humorous characters, and its compelling culture, complete with its own folk history and mythos. Fiver's vision finally leads them to Watership Down, an upland meadow. But here they face their most difficult challenges of all.

A stirring epic of courage and survival against the odds, Watership Down has become a beloved classic for all ages. Both an exciting adventure story and an involving allegory about freedom, ethics, and human nature, it has delighted generations with its unique and charming world, winning many awards and being adapted to film, television, and theater.

©2000 Richard George Adams (P)2010 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

What the Critics Say

“Quite marvelous...A powerful new vision of the great chain of being.” (New York Times Book Review)

“Spellbinding....Marvelous....A taut tale of suspense, hot pursuit, and derring-do.” (Chicago Tribune)

“A classic....A great book.” (Los Angeles Times)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.7 (31 )
5 star
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4.7 (31 )
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Story
4.6 (31 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Darcy 17/06/2016
    Darcy 17/06/2016 Member Since 2016
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
    Overall
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    Story
    "Watership down "

    I have watched the film and now i have read the book i really enjoyed it

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kenneth 02/03/2016
    Kenneth 02/03/2016 Member Since 2015

    A reader from my youth in several languages, to have now discovered Audible is more than a bonus.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Distant pleasure re-known"

    Having read Watership Down decades ago, I had forgotten the pleasure of Richard Adam's prose. And to hear it read, for the first time, by Ralph Cosham, was a pleasure increased. I have a vague memory of the book being frowned upon for anthropomorphism, but that does not detract from the beauty of the writing, nor indeed from the fascination of the story itself. How lucky were his daughters to have had a father who could create such stories primarily for the entertainment .

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jason 01/03/2016
    Jason 01/03/2016
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    10
    2
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    "Truly Epic"

    Having read the book several times as a child, I was pleased to hear that it had been transferred into audiobook in fine fashion.

    An engaging tale for any age. Adams' truly epic tale of escape, adventure and ultimately survival, will keep your ears pricked up well past the witching hour, and into the wee hours if you let it.

    A definite lifelong favourite.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rachel 19/11/2015
    Rachel 19/11/2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
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    11
    5
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    "A classic tale just brilliant"
    Would you listen to Watership Down again? Why?

    Absolutely the narrators were great and it such a classic


    Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Who doesn't cry at Watership Down i was also scared...


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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  • Bapário
    Louisville
    5/12/10
    Overall
    "Still one of the best!"

    I first read this book when it was published in 1972, and after reading it I remember being incredulous that a book about rabbits with names like Hazel and Bigwig could be so engaging and thought provoking. I had pretty much forgotten about it through the years when I happened upon it at Audible and I immediately used a credit. Am I ever glad that I did. After all this time it's still compelling because although it certainly is a story about rabbits, it's also about the ethos of honor, trust, friendship, courage and perseverance, which are important no matter what type of creature you happen to be. You can search google and find a copy of the "Watershipdown Lapine Glossary" to learn the words that the rabbits use to communicate with each other. For example, Silf = Eat & Flay = Outside, so to "Silfflay" means going outside the warren to eat. You can usually figure it out, but I found a glossary helpful as I began to read the story. They also use a common language known as "hedgerow" to communicate with other non-lapine creatures, which are an important aspect of the story.

    75 of 78 people found this review helpful
  • Jefferson
    Jonan-ku, Fukuoka-shi, Japan
    19/02/11
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A Classic Rabbit Epic"

    When my mother gave me Watership Down in junior high school in the early 1970s, I thought, "Is she kidding? A book about rabbits?" But I gave it a chance and immediately was completely caught, finished it, and never forgot the general story and a couple standout scenes and great characters. Listening to the audiobook version now after about 40 years was an extraordinary experience, as I re-discovered just how wonderful the book is, how rich in rabbit lore, how unsentimental, epic, scary, funny, original, universal, beautiful, and moving. I couldn't stop listening to the last 90 minutes, even though I was lying in bed exhausted by a long day of work. I had forgotten how well the stories about the legendary rabbit trickster founder hero, El-ahrairah, mesh with the main plot and themes. I had forgotten how effectively the interesting epigraphs foreshadow the action of each chapter. I had forgotten how the mystical elements fall like moon (Inle) shadow on the realistic body of the book. I had forgotten that I would follow Hazel, Fiver, Bigwig, Dandelion, Blackberry, and Bluebell anywhere!

    Ralph Cosham does an excellent job reading the novel. I like his savory voice and restrained manner. He doesn't strain for pyrotechnic effects or manipulative emotions or cartoonish personalities, but instead does just enough, distinguishing well between different characters, like Bigwig (deep and rough), Fiver (high and sensitive), Hazel (his natural speaking voice), and Kehaar (a Norwegian seagull), and between different moods and scenes, like quiet grazing, desperate violence, and numinous natural beauty. In short, Cosham lets the text do its thing even as he perfectly enhances its effects. His reading of Dandelion's performance of the hilarious El-ahrairah story "Rowsby Woof and the Fairy Wogdog" and of the transcendent final chapter alone are worth the price of admission. No pyrotechnics, just perfect, clear, sympathetic, and appealing reading.

    79 of 84 people found this review helpful
  • Michael
    Bellevue, WA, United States
    12/08/10
    Overall
    "Outstanding!"

    Somehow I never read the print version of this book, so I was coming to this audio book fresh. I loved this story! The characters were so believable and likeable. Then I realized that the rabbit fairy tales, far from being a distraction, were foreshadowing what would come next. Wonderful story telling!

    The reader of this book was amazing. What a variety of voices and accents -- my absolute favorites were the gruff, no-nonsense English-accented voice of Bigwig the rabbit and the harsh Norwegian-accented voice of Kehaar the seagull.

    I found myself wanting to share the story with my wife every night after listening during my commute. She began asking me about the story before I even brought it up. After listening to the fairy tale "Rowsby Woof and the Fairy Wogdog", I was laughing so hard that I had to share it, so I played it for her when I got home.

    47 of 50 people found this review helpful
  • brian
    cedar rapids, IA, United States
    24/09/10
    Overall
    "Why hadn't I read this sooner?"

    Here I am...a guy who read Stephen King and Crichton novels, and I find this book. I am reluctant, but give it a shot since I read these great reviews. Wow... what an excellent piece of art this book is! And the narration is SUPURB. This is now my favorite novel I have ever listened to. Awesome.

    64 of 69 people found this review helpful
  • James
    Laveen, AZ, United States
    15/11/10
    Overall
    "Great Literature"

    It can be difficult to explain how a book about rabbits can feel so touchingly human. Before I was even past the fifth chapter, I felt for Hazel, Fiver, Big Wig, and the rest of their company so completely that I had trouble not listening to the rest of the book.
    Richard Adams paints a beautiful story using the wilds of the English Countryside as his canvas, and Ralph Cosham is a masterful narrator of this classic.

    This is one I will certainly be listening to again in the future.

    37 of 40 people found this review helpful
  • Darwin8u
    Mesa, AZ, United States
    25/06/12
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Heroic Quest Novel DROPPED on a Warren of Rabbits"

    Just finished listening to this book with the kids. It seems to effortlessly float between the walls of genre fiction. At once Watership Down is a children's book, a heroic fantasy novel and a clever, classical exploration of heroic themes. Adams' seems very comfortable in exploring ideas of heroism, sacrifice and community (and others) using the language and strategies of the Greek and Latin masters (Iliad, Odyssey, Aeneid) . I'm not sure if it is more incredible that Adams dared to drop a heroic quest novel into a warren of rabbits or that he actually pulled it off.

    43 of 47 people found this review helpful
  • Michale
    Baltimore, MD, United States
    28/06/10
    Overall
    "Classic"

    For all of my life I will be moved by this story of friendship and adventure. I have read the book so many times now... it was nice have it read to me. It gave me a different perspective. Lucky is the person who gets to experience this book for the first time!

    55 of 62 people found this review helpful
  • Carolyn
    Mililani, HI, United States
    15/06/10
    Overall
    "All Time Favorite!!!!!"

    Watership Down is one of my all time favorite books. I love the hard copy. The story is exciting and I learned so much about rabbits. The narrator did a wonderful job. Listening to this book is a great pleasure for me.

    30 of 36 people found this review helpful
  • JEB
    LOS ANGELES, CA USA
    30/08/10
    Overall
    "Must Read"

    This is a wonderful book. It is challenging and thought provoking. Richard Adams has written a classic book that makes you consider our relationship to nature, the way we act in community, trust, loyalty and friendship. The narrator, Ralph Cosham, is perfect.

    19 of 23 people found this review helpful
  • Mel
    USA
    25/03/12
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "DITTO"
    What made the experience of listening to Watership Down the most enjoyable?

    It was original, creative, imaginative, and written wonderfully. The narration also added to a flawless and enjoyable production.


    What other book might you compare Watership Down to and why?

    Charlotte's Web, Felidae, Lion King, Firebringer trilogy


    Which character ??? as performed by Ralph Cosham ??? was your favorite?

    Each had qualities I thought added to the story; probably Hazel for his leadership qualities and his integrity, Bigwig for his boldness and courage, Blackberry for his cleverness and dedication, Fiver for his tenderness. I understand the reason for Cosham's Norwegian accent with the character Kehaar, but found his rendering a little difficult to understand.


    If you could take any character from Watership Down out to dinner, who would it be and why?

    General Woundwort--with some Bataka bats to work out his anger and abandonment issues; Fiver for obvious reasons.


    Any additional comments?

    A lovely listen. At times I thought it became just little tedious towards the end and suggest it be listened to over a period of time to really appreciate it fully.

    14 of 17 people found this review helpful
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  • A User
    10/06/16
    Overall
    "great book"

    I love this book . Its so good .I am just an 8 year old and I love it . 10/10bGreat for you as well

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • helen
    26/02/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Wonderful wonderful"

    This is so beautifully read - our family (Incl all the children aged 8,10,14,16) were all captivated for the whole 51 hours! Imagine, 51 hours of peace.....!!

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Miko
    Guildford, United Kingdom
    31/07/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Flawless"

    I had only vague memories of this story from when I was a child and doubt I would have chosen it to listen to now had the other reviews not been so good. I'm am so glad I allowed those reviews to convince me. Brilliant story, which was elegantly written and perfectly narrated. Recommend to anyone who like a good story - don't let that it's about rabbits turn you away.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • M. Price
    UK
    21/05/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A True Classic"

    I read Watership Down in the 1970s when it first came out in paperback and was delighted to see the unabridged edition appear on Audible. That being said I was somewhat nervous in case the book had failed to stand the test of time, after all I first read it at the age of 20 and I will be 60 in a few weeks time! What can I say? Hazel, Fiver, Bigwig et al and their adventures, have worn far better than I have! They are as fresh today as they were back then, Ralph Cosham's performance is faultless and I am sure that the book will appeal to a whole new audience, as well as remind old enthusiasts like myself, why the book was such an enormous success at the time.

    9 of 10 people found this review helpful
  • S. H. Yeomans
    England
    13/04/13
    Overall
    "Wonderful"

    Regretfully, I find myself with little time for reading these days. I've never listened to an audio book before and I wasn't sure if I could stop my overactive mind wandering enough to concentrate on a story, so I decided to try a book that I know well so I didn't lose the plot if my mind did wander. Watership Down has been a favourite book of mine since I was 9, and I chose it to try out listening to audio books at work. Well, I was hooked from the first line. Ralph Cosham narrates this story beautifully; his voice fits the story and writing story perfectly. I'm a fast reader (actually I rush to tell the truth) and having the story read out gave me a much deeper experience of reading the book as every word was heard and enjoyed. Thoroughly recommended.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • G
    Swindon, United Kingdom
    13/04/13
    Overall
    "Brings the world of rabbits to life"

    Only ever previously seen the film and loved it as a child, its one of those books I never got around to reading. This is really nicely narrated and has really opened up the magical world of rabbits for me, I never realised how much more there was in the book that was cut out of the film. I especially like the little tangent stories about El-ahrairah great fun and a great listen.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Andrew
    isle of wight, United Kingdom
    25/08/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "As Beautiful As Ever"

    A gorgeous story full of emotion and adventure, and narrated beautifully as any great British story should be; gentle intonation and inflection. Loved it. Gave me a chance to reminisce about my childhood.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Steve
    12/05/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Timeless classic"

    Have the book at home, thought I would give this a go and was not disappointed. Excellent narration.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • MR
    12/04/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "my favourite children's book still captivates me"

    my favourite children's book still captivates me as an adult, characters you really care about and a great story

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Mr.C.Terry
    15/02/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Reliving a wonderful tale"

    It was a joy to relive this superb tale of life through a rabbits eyes.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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