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Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance (Dramatised)

Narrated by: James Purefoy
Length: 1 hr and 40 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (141 ratings)

Non-member price: $27.33

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Publisher's Summary

James Purefoy stars in this BBC Radio 4 full-cast dramatisation of Robert M. Pirsig's multi-million best-selling philosophical novel. One of the most important and influential books of the past half-century, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance tells the iconic story of a father and son's motorcycle trip across America in the 1960s. Yet it also describes a personal and philosophical journey, asking questions along the way about how to live a meaningful life.

Now dramatised for the first time by Peter Flannery (Our Friends in the North, George Gently, The Devil's Whore) and starring James Purefoy (Rome, Injustice, Ironclad), this full-cast drama adds a new and original dimension to a true modern classic.

©2012 Robert Pirsig (P)2012 AudioGO Ltd

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

This is immersive.

I've listened to this piece after I was done with the original text, but it can be well enjoyed on its own. In comparison, the plot has had some rearrangements and has been made compact to create this abridged edition. It is still much more than a typical audiobook. And, by the way, the best narration I've ever come along.

3 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Gets to the point but misses the language

Narration was great, but there was a lot left out from the actual book which I found disappointing. The message is still there though, if not a little short.

1 person found this helpful

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Not for me

I have listen to this book in full to realise that I’ve listened to this book before and returned it. Which is funny considering the context of the story. It’s a firm not for me twice now.

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not what i expected

i was recommended this book at work when talking about software quality. has no idea what the heck i was in for. it's definitely a bit weird for me.

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Zen & the Art of Night Time Listening

I had read this book a number of times in my teenage years & loved the philosophical didactic rhetoric & the traveling story line but if memory serves me, surly it took me longer than an 1 hour & 40 minutes to read. As a matter of fact, it actually took me longer to listen to it as nodding off & had to go back a few times. However I'm sure this was condensed, as it was a dramatization & missed a fair bit of the classical intellectual musings that were part of his internal dialogue. Still a great romantic listen concentrating more on the human relationships & the proposition of insanity whist still conversing on the dualism of classical & romantic quality.

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Amazing

Amazing performance, wish all books were done this way. You could almost picture a movie.

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A 'Quality' message and quality performances.

A very insightful author.
Well argued throughout the story ... i note a sacrifice of ones authentic self to conformity to philosophical rational thinking, and the mental health toll on oneself and family relationship values to knowingly conform, betray ones spiritual identity and give in to living inauthentically.
i agree, profound unfulfillment in life is not worth going along for the sake of pleasing others, and Our True and Better Self is definitely worth saving.

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Now that I'm a dad, I see an all new perspective

I was 19 when I read this book for the first time. It was highly recommended by the librarian and I literally dragged myself through the book to get some meaning out of it. I was dumb back then. All these years later, now I'm 34 and just happened to see the title on audible. I'm glad that I found this book again. I'm a dad to a toddler and have myself struggled through some internal conflicts. I don't want even the shadow of my conflicts to affect my son. This book was a great parallel for myself, it has been a mirror and helps me see something I've been ignoring... Quality time for my son.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Brilliant!

I just kove the audio of this wonderful, purposeful book. I wish it was the whole book.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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What a wonderful book

A truly wonderful book, the dialogue is unexpected and amazing. This book is penitrating, and lasting into one's soul.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • SAW
  • 11-08-2015

I should have bought the book.

pro: I liked that it was dramatized
con: it was too abridged.
To sum it up: create a dramatized unabridged version because what I heard was good.

23 people found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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  • Juncao Li
  • 16-11-2017

It is not the story it claims to be! Avoid!

It is not the story it claims to be! Avoid! Had to buy the real version again ...

The story in this audible is wired

20 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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  • Jeff
  • 21-04-2018

WARNING!!! Not the book.

It's an audioplay based on the novel. I wasted a credit not knowing. FYI, the other version on Audible is also NOT the book. (wasted another credit). It's a heavily edited shorter version. Audible doesn't carry the complete novel. Bummer.

11 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 13-09-2018

Book is way better (no surprise)

You cannot boil a great book down this much (especially not a book as dense as the original) and maintain the QUALITY of the full story.

3 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Sabith
  • 17-02-2014

Very Engaging and though provoking

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

yes, the book is dramatised and it makes it very interesting to listen. The use of mild music is also soothing and adds to the drama

6 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Juan Arroyo
  • 26-03-2015

amazing! great to hear this book again

really good. I listen to this book a while back while visiting Spain. I feel like I understand the setting of the book a little more by listening this short part dramatized. def worth listening too if you like the book or audio.

2 people found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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  • alex bruns
  • 23-03-2020

Garbage

Garbage. Nothing like the actual book, what a mistake, don't make the same as me.

1 person found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Ferdi
  • 25-01-2018

A good story perhaps too dramatized

What made the experience of listening to Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance (Dramatised) the most enjoyable?

The dramatization is done quite well, and at times you can feel the emotion coming through the characters voices.

Who was your favorite character and why?

I wish I could say the child was my favorite character, but he seemed to be a brat. The father in present sense was perhaps not likable, due to his roughness, but you could empathize with him.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

It's very short making it a easy to listen through in a couple of hours.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • JeffT
  • 04-02-2020

excellent

really enjoyed reading this book years ago. listening to this A performance brought back just how interesting this book is. highly recomended.

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    1 out of 5 stars
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  • Jessica Thornberry
  • 06-09-2019

NOT the entire book

This is not the entirety of the book. Super upset that I wasted a credit on this.

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Ian
  • 24-07-2013

disappointed

I have read the book a number of times and enjoyed it. Sadly this dramatised version is far from the original text and left me feeling very disappointed. If you have never read the book then it might entertain, but if you have any knowledge of the book I would avoid this at all costs. The emphasis was completely wrong for me, possibly I missed the point when I previously read the book. This version seemed to focus on one aspect of the story and almost completely ignore, what was for me, the point of the book.

12 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Mr. C. Tod
  • 23-08-2013

Oh dear!

It was a mistake to get the dramatised version i.e. huge chunks and half the point missing.

I have fond memories of this book and it would have been perfect as a reading.

It's my own fault for buying in a hurry and not spotting that it was a dramatisation.

10 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Mack
  • 06-04-2017

Disappointed

Bore little resemblance to the written book. Not at all what I expected...dramatisation was not at all in keeping with my recollection of the original.

3 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 27-08-2019

I loved the book but...

The dramatization missed a lot of the depth and poetry of the original text. I'd love an audio version of the full text.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 26-05-2020

Very disappointing

Does not nearly live up to the original book as I remember it. Very disappointing.

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    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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  • Emily
  • 13-05-2020

Not what I expected

Unfortunately this isn't the book I was looking for. I'm not entirely sure what this version is trying to achieve.

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    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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  • Mr A
  • 05-05-2020

Don’t bother

The over acted voice narration is jarring. Whoever thought the sons voice was appropriate needs a new job.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 16-04-2020

need the unabridged version

just seemed too short and superficial
really need a full text unabridged version
probably not really worth it to get this

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • sin sin minkin
  • 09-04-2020

A decent approximation of the book

The thread that binds the novel, the father-son relationship and the narrative deliberations about quality are intact - barely intact.

I missed some of the imagistic sequences about quality and freedom that stuck with me from the book.

Then there's the sound of the bike. No one drove across country on the hoover engines you can hear on the recording. I don't know. It just really put me off. Can't say why. There's just something about the crumby sound of that engine I don't believe in.

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    1 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Pete
  • 19-03-2020

Disappointed.

I read this years ago and as our plans for this years Bike Tour were dashed decided to have a listen, to cheer me up.
It didn't work. The narration was good but it could not portray the book successfully when it was so abated.
Full story and plot next time please.