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Lord of the Flies

Narrated by: Martin Jarvis
Length: 6 hrs and 59 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (248 ratings)

Non-member price: $37.98

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Publisher's Summary

A plane crashes on a desert island and the only survivors, a group of schoolboys, assemble on the beach and wait to be rescued. By day they inhabit a land of bright fantastic birds and dark blue seas, but at night their dreams are haunted by the image of a terrifying beast. As the boys’ delicate sense of order fades, so their childish dreams are transformed into something more primitive, and their behaviour starts to take on a murderous, savage significance.

©1954 William Golding (P)2012 Faber Audio

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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Old memories

Read this when I was a kid. It was good to read it again.

The narration reminded me of old radio broadcasts.
Still a great listen.

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Disturbing tragedy

The book somehow gives me an indescribable heavy feeling towards the human nature of mankind.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • ESK
  • 12-11-2012

Story of cruel innocence

It's a story of spiralling down into savagery and brutality, a story of making a choice between good and evil, peace and war, God and Satan. The name Lord of the flies is actually translated as Beelzebul, one of the three main fallen angels along with Lucifer and Astaroth.
It is revolting to see how quickly and without compunction children can lose their innocence and become unruly bloodthirsty criminals.
As for the narrator, I was overwhelmed listening to M. Jarvis' performance. His rendition was exceptional.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Ian
  • 20-09-2012

Classic - if a bit disturbing.

Another classic that I have been seeking on audio to add to my library for a while. This one because I had read it as a boy and enjoyed it greatly and wanted to add it to my rotating library of repeat listens. It makes it to that list very very easily.

The basic story is probably fairly well known. Group of boys. Desert Island. Add some time and wait for chaos to reign. I remembered that much from my boyhood read but there are layers here that I didn't get as a spotty teen.

And I'm coming to the conclusion that this is what makes a great book great.

Every time you read it it makes you think about some element of it differently and see some feature in a new light. Ostensibly this is a book about how small boys will happily become savages if left without authority. It is also wider, deeper and longer than that if you pause the recoding every now and then and let your mind wander over a scene for a few minutes and think about whatever else it throws into your head. Bit like tasting a good wine where you can (I'm told - cheap plonk man myself) start to seperate out individual notes from the flavour. "I'm getting - the beginnings of religion - the draw of superstition - mans inhumanity to man.........."

That said , if all you want is a good book with a good story well told and well read then this will do that for you too. Just that there is more there if you want it.

Martin Jarvis does an excellent job on the narration.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Henrik Ebbeskog
  • 25-09-2019

Carried away in thoughts

I sometimes got carried away in thoughts. Not a good sign that it was a book for me.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 18-03-2019

The book was one of the best I've read, but

Overall this was a great book, but the emense amount of discription of the environment made it a lot more boring to read and listen to. Other than that the book was amazing, the story, characters and this weird concept made you really think about how cruel the world is. Hey, and I liked the narrator to!

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  • Bev Cox
  • 17-03-2019

Too many metaphors

It was a walk down memory lane, have not read this since a child. Unfortunately, I had never realised how repetitious and heavy-handed the Author was until now. Still a great look at Human behaviour and entertaining #Team Ralph

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 09-02-2019

lord of the flies

Loved it! Narrator was excellent! Long time overdue book for me to 'read'. Well done

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Phelan Hourigan
  • 21-09-2017

Important Ideas but a boring story

I appreciated the writing, themes, and ideas. However, the plot is slow and cumbersomeand I struggled to finish the book.

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  • Mike
  • 31-03-2017

Really great!

I liked the story quite a lot, apparently it's a classic. The narrative is good, a little silly sometimes, but it's all about kids anyways. A good one for a listen, and one for the old "I've read it" bank

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 29-06-2018

What a messed up book

Imagine an island in the sea, where we boys can be, fish together and be happy and free. Until order collapses and we start raping piglets and killing each other. Jesus Christ, what a messed up book. I mean... God, why? It starts so nice and optimistic, and then suddenly the darkness grows, and we become savages. I liked this book very much, although it is a very dark and disturbing story.
The characters are believable, but I don't think I like any of them. Ralph was kind of a dork sometimes, Piggy was partly annoying and Jack was just straight up evil. Except my man Simon, he was very awesome and asked important questions. I think I would've liked it much better if I had read it when I was a little younger and less experienced, because sometimes the boys truly annoy me with their irrationality. Jesus Christ, who gives a shit about a fucking conch? That's some fascist shit right there.
Golding sometimes writes very long descriptions of actions, which makes it kinda slow, and I have to pay attention to everything that is happening. His message is that we all have the Lord of the Flies within us, which I can understand, but don't know if I agree with. Yes, most of the kids turn to shit, but Ralph, Piggy and Samneric still fight against what they are becoming. I think, if we are kind to each other, help each other and don't rape piglets or kill small boys, we all have a Lord of the Butterflies within us.
The audio is very good, but his voice for Piggy are very annoying.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Chris
  • 25-04-2015

Was forced to read this book but it was ok

Decent book, decent story line, better than reading the words.

And I have to add another 10 words to make this count

1 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Ant
  • 12-12-2013

There's a reason it's a classic

A very well told story of descent into savagery. This is one of those "I really should read" books, which I am very glad I did.
Every part of this story is etched into my mind by the author's descriptive artistry brought to life by Martin Jarvis' exceptional story telling. I can still see Piggy quite clearly when I recollect the book, along with the pig trails in the jungle and the boys camp next to the shallow rock pool.
If you have any desire to read this book then I doubt it will be a disappointment.

10 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • stephen
  • 28-04-2013

Not a single word wasted.

Being uneducated and semi-literate, Lord of The Flies has been one of the many books floating around in the ether that was unlikely for me ever to read. It turns out that my nephew, who is also my ward along with his four siblings, must study it for his Junior Certificate state examinations in Ireland. So I got the audiobook. I'm sure, like many people, I have had a vague idea of what it was about. I didn't realise that it was so modern, what with aeroplanes and televisions etc. What impressed me was the simplicity in the style of writing. I'm sure that this book is not abridgeable, unlike Victor Hugo and even my dear sweet Charles Dickens, and in truth William Golding has not wasted a single word. As to Martin Jarvis, here is an actor who can really bring a book to life, he reads beautifully and interprets characters brilliantly. I would highly recommend this audiobook.

28 of 30 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • eileen
  • 26-04-2013

lord of the flies

I read this book when I was 11 and enjoyed it then so I thought that it would be nice to give it another try and I must say it was just as enjoyable this time round, I found that I just had to keep reading until I had finished it. A great read, sad and funny.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Philippa
  • 23-12-2012

Atmospheric

This reading suits perfectly the dramatic story that unfolds. The pace at which the story is told does justice to the powerful atmosphere that Golding creates. I played the death scenes to class while they were studying it and it made the story all the most accessible to them.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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  • Carrie
  • 21-06-2014

Wonderful

I really enjoyed this book it gripped me throughout. The reader was fantastic and there was very little that didnt add to the story.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Sarah Davies
  • 20-06-2019

Brilliant narrator for such a powerful book

I haven't read this for years although it's one that stays with you. As an adult revisiting it there's an added layer of nuance I think as you truly understand the last few lines.

The reader was superb and I really enjoyed this.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Carly
  • 01-12-2012

Excellent narration

Martin Jarvis did a very good job here, bringing the characters to life. A pleasure to listen to.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

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  • Lightning Brother
  • 10-10-2019

Gripping

I enjoyed every moment of this book, and Martin Jarvis's performance was excellent, with sympathetic rendering of every character and situation.

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  • AGO
  • 09-10-2019

Kids!

I read this book years ago and really enjoyed it. Listening to again confirms what a great book it is. The narrator was excellent his depiction of piggy with his “arzma” (asthma) was perfect.

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  • Niall Murray
  • 21-09-2019

A Fantastic Classic

I loved this audiobook. I had never read Lord of the Flies before, and I am very, very happy with my first-time experience of this fantastic classic.
The narrator is brilliant and delivers the character development and suspense of plan masterfully.
Some of the earlier chapters do spend a bit too long on describing the surroundings when there's not much plot development going on. There is also moment where Piggy unfortunately demonstrates that this is book is a child of its time. But other than those two negatives, everything was positive and I would happily listen to it again!