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Kipling's masterpiece Kim is his final and most famous work and one of the first and greatest espionage stories ever written. It explores the life of Kimball O'Hara, an Irish orphan who spends his childhood as a vagrant in Lahore. When he befriends an aged Tibetan lama his life is transformed as he is requested to accompany him on a mysterious quest to find the legendary River of the Arrow and achieve Enlightenment. The pilgrimage will take them across the vast continent, across rivers, and up the Himalayas.
While Kim wishes to take part in the imperialistic Great Game, learning espionage from the British secret service, he feels spiritually bound to the lama. Kim has a difficult choice to make: his companion or his country?
A rich and colourful depiction of India's exotic landscape and culture in the imperialistic world of the late 19th century, this audiobook celebrates their friendship and explores a young man's quest for identity.
Rudyard Kipling was an English journalist, short-story writer, poet, and novelist who was the first English language author to win the Nobel Prize in Literature. Some of his most memorable works include The Jungle Book and Just So Stories.
In 1998 Kim was ranked at Number 78 on the Modern Library's list of the 100 best English-language novels of the 20th century. In 2003 it was listed on the BBC's The Big Read poll of the UK's 'best-loved novel'.
Three-time Olivier Award winner actor Alex Jennings has had an extensive career with the Royal Shakespeare Company and National Theatre. His recent stage performances have included Willy Wonka in 2014's Charlie and the Chocolate Factory the Musical and Professor Henry Higgins in the 2016 Australian 60th Anniversary production of My Fair Lady. In 2006 he played Prince Charles opposite Helen Mirren in The Queen and has had other roles in films such as Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason (2004), Babel (2006) and The Lady in the Van (2015). His television work has included the BBC TV series Cranford (2007) and long running legal drama Silk (2011-2014). In 2016 he featured in the Netflix series The Crown and the ITV series Victoria. He has narrated many audiobooks including Attention All Shipping by Charlie Connelly, which in 2008 was chosen as one of the top 40 audiobooks of all time.
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Jeanie on 09-19-12
A Stunning Experience
I finally read this classic because I wanted the background on the character when reading "The Game" by Laurie R. King as part of the Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes series. What I got was a stunning and fulfilling experience that I wouldn't have missed for the world!
Not being an expert on Indian dialects, I can't say if Sam Dastor's narration is technically correct, but it is perfect for enhancing the listening experience. I came to know and love the many characters as though they were real people, and Dastor's performance was what brought them to life.
The story itself was one that the summary didn't really prepare me for. I had at first thought that this tale of wandering through what for me is an alien culture wouldn't be something that could involve and capture me on a personal level. But I discovered that some things are truly universal, regardless of the cultural trappings, and I was captivated. Like so many in the tale who came to love him, Kim is one of those characters who somehow worked his way into my heart and I will carry him with me for many years to come. The same must be said of Kim's holy man. Other characters have written themselves in my heart as well.
I am so glad, whatever the outside motivation, that I finally read this book and had the opportunity to meet and love Kim and all of those around him. My only regret is that I deprived myself of knowing Kim for so long.
15 of 16 people found this review helpful
By Protea on 01-23-12
Books that are Firm Favourites
Would you consider the audio edition of Kim to be better than the print version?
I first met Kim at High School. It was a setbook for our English Literature class. That was over 60 years ago!! I have carried that book around the world with me - I travel quite a lot - and read it on planes and trains. Sometime ago I found out about a version on DVD, which I purchased. Now I have it for my computer and MP3 player (which I listen to on my treadmill) and I am still listening to it. Mr Kipling encapsulated the essence of the time in History and where it took place to perfection. Thanks for the audible version.
What was one of the most memorable moments of Kim?
When he gets acquainted with Llama.
Have you listened to any of Sam Dastor’s other performances before? How does this one compare?
No I have never listened to any other Sam Dastor performances to my knowledge.
Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?
No, it is the kind of book which must be listened to in its separate parts. However, if the occasion arose, it could well be listened to all in one sitting.
Any additional comments?
Do some more audio books like this please.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Sydney on 12-22-13
Such a great pleasure, a classic novel of course but what is better than a reader you feel is thoroughly enjoying himself? The reader keeps his tone fairly flat in the narration, but this is only to prepare a canvas for his cast of characters, each of whom gets a vividly individual voice. I have no idea if they are accurate accents, they're rather music-hall versions maybe but they work extremely well with Kipling. You can anticipate his delight when he gets to do a conversation between a Frenchman and a Russian. A great version.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful
By J Halle on 05-09-12
A splendid book, beautifully read. Moving, amusing, informative. A book to savour - again and again.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Dr. Colin F. Bindloss on 11-18-16
This is a delight, well read and not, as you might expect, the rousing tale of the ruling Raj but a much more sympathetic appreciation of the tapestry of peoples that made up the India of the late nineteenth century. How much has changed I don't know but the descriptions of places and people seem to be remarkably true even now. The reader brings out the characters and their different ethnic and religious backgrounds wonderfully well - better than when you read it yourself - and particularly expresses the humour of many of the exchanges between the strong personalities involved. The Great Game was never so entertaining, I'm sure, but how exciting Kipling makes it sound! By the end Kim does seem to be a Friend to all the World.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
By Philip on 08-02-18
A Good Narrator Brings a Classic Alive
Kipling has his detractors as an imperialist, jingoistic, adherent of eugenics. But he has written a sprawling story of the most perceptive sympathy with the Subcontinent, that ranks - in my mind - with the best classics of English language novel writing. It is in my personal top 5. Kipling didn’t win the Nobel for literature for nothing; he creates character with remarkable insight and a few, and then just a few more, penstrokes - and not a little cultural determinism. He celebrates the North Indian landscape and geography with remarkable poetry; the reader is truly transported. The cities of Lahore and Benares are brought to life with veracity and colour. A half-burned corpse bobbing along the Ganges as it flows past the ghats of the timeless holy city was as true an occurrence then as now. India is a land of rail; Kipling’s recounting of travel by train is spot on and, for my money was just the same 80 years on and I daresay is not dissimilar now. The amazing and accomplished Sam Dastor brings this brilliant story absolutely to life with a panoply of voices; his narration makes an already transcendentally accomplished piece of literature something even further beyond. I first read Kim 38 years ago and then 22 years ago - this Audible exclusive guarantees that I will read it again.