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Publisher's Summary

Britain, the not-too-distant future. Idir is taking the British Citizenship Test. He wants his family to belong. 

Twenty-five questions to determine his fate. Twenty-five chances to impress. When the test takes an unexpected and tragic turn, Idir is handed the power of life and death. 

How do you value a life when all you have is multiple choice?  

©2019 Sylvain Neuvel (P)2019 Blackstone Publishing

Critic Reviews

"Thought-provoking and disturbing. A cautionary tale illuminated with dark enlightenment." (Kirkus, starred review)

What listeners say about The Test

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Profile Image for Kristy @ Caffeinated Fae
  • Kristy @ Caffeinated Fae
  • 22-03-2019

Shocking & engaging

Holy sh*t that was a mind f*ck. Sorry, but there really wasn't another way to put that. This book truly belongs as an episode of Black Mirror. It's shocking, it's engaging, and it really messes with you. The Test by Sylvain Neuvel is truly a novella that is going to stick with you long after reading it. I listened to the audiobook of it. The narrator (Neil Shah) was perfect. He was able to capture the characters perfectly and his accents and voices were brilliant. This audiobook was extremely well done. I was engrossed in the first minute of the audiobook and I didn't want it to end. I cannot wait to see what Sylvain Neuvel comes up with next. This was brilliant.

14 people found this helpful

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  • Chester Johnson
  • 17-02-2019

Dystopian Britain.......

This short 2 hour and 12 min audiobook leaves the reader with a lot to ponder even after you finish the book. Very much in the same vein as a Black Mirror episode, it centers around a Iranian immigrant to Britain taking the British Citizenship test somewhere in a dystopian future, but all I'll say about the plot is that it isn't as simple as that. A great short 4 out of 5 star read for its intriguing plot.

8 people found this helpful

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  • Shifrah
  • 20-10-2020

Not impressed

This book was way too long. I listened to it all and wished I’d stopped after the first chapter. And the ending is very anticlimactic. Don’t waste your time.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Andrew
  • 14-11-2020

Stanford Prison Experience Explained

The Stanford Prison experiment was to ascertain how people respond to adverse circumstances as individuals pushed toward the extreme. They’re were I believe seven prisoners and seven guards and both groups randomly chosen were dehumanized to the point where the experience ended earlier than intended. This is a philosophical question that asks: what if the choices made in that experiment didn’t end until its proper conclusion? This is a darkly psychological short story that you simply can’t look away from anymore than you could look away from an oncoming disaster. If you are squeamish or easily offended? You should avoid. Nevertheless, it is concise and well written and deserves accolades for asking how would’ve the Prisoner given choice respond? Zimbardo would be equally horrified and humbled to discover his most famous expression of psychology answered in such fashion.

4 people found this helpful

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  • originalmike007
  • 14-10-2020

Starts off strong...then goes off the rails.

The good: likable protagonist, interesting premise, literate.
The bad: WTF? Every other character is flat, unrealistic, and unempathizable. The premise turns from interesting to disgusting to completely unbelievable.

4 people found this helpful

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  • padef
  • 23-11-2020

First book I ever reviewed out of hundreds

This 2 hour book grabs and does not let go. A deeply psychological tail within a SCI fi adventure.

No rocket ships but a surprising comment about our changing relationship within our societies and our families.

Most highly recommend

3 people found this helpful

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  • Brutis
  • 15-10-2020

Bad

I got exactly what I paid for, its part of the extended library and cost nothing. That library seems to have all the books I have tried and returned for being no good.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Timo
  • 30-07-2021

Cruel and vile

I like stories with a psychological conundrum.
But this scenario is incredibly cruel. I’m glad the story was so short. Else I would not have been able to listen much longer.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Carla W.
  • 27-02-2021

Don't read any synopses!

I was spoiled slightly by a review of this, but I still enjoyed it. It's a very thought-provoking story. Neil Shah does an Amazing job!

1 person found this helpful

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  • Jake LaFrance
  • 16-02-2019

Very good! Interesting concept

I read this book because I loved the Themis Files by Sylvain Neuvel and was much looking forward to this one. I was not disappointed. I really enjoyed this little novella. The conecpt was well executed, the characters were great. I only wished it was slightly longer, maybe it could have been 3 hours instead of 2 hours. It was great either way though. I can't wait to read whatever Sylvain Neuvel releases next.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Meshell S
  • 18-10-2021

Disturbing and intelligent

A very intelligent yet disturbing look into a future in regards to immigration. Enjoyed it.

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  • S. Halil
  • 02-09-2021

Thought provoking, captivating, disturbing.

Very different from Neuvels other books and at first I wasn't sure for that reason alone, but the writing is sharp and the performance is excellent so it was easy to get hooked. The storyline presents layers of ethical conundrums almost like a theoretical philosophical scenario but it does so in a way that allows you to accept it as the telling of a tale rather than a device. I would have given 5 stars if it wasn't for the ending which left me with a sense of sadness that felt a little bit unnecessary.

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  • D. Woodhouse
  • 29-08-2021

A potent powerful performance

It's rare for an audiobook to actually get my adrenaline pumping but this one sure did. This story is going to haunt me for years. Niel Shah's narration is flawless, raw and emotional. All I can say is that it blew me away

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Profile Image for Anonymous User
  • Anonymous User
  • 03-07-2021

Another excellent work

Sylvain Neuvel does it again, another fantastic book which made it difficult to switch off, wish I had to listen to it start to finish in a single sitting!

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  • Anonymous User
  • 08-02-2021

brexit was a mistake

My soul has been chipped away from. 10/10. I weep for my poor boy, Idir

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Profile Image for Russell Buckley-Taylor
  • Russell Buckley-Taylor
  • 07-04-2020

Really interesting concept well written

This book combines fantastic writing with a hell of a narrative, once I started listening I didn't want to stop. Fantastic

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