Short Stories of William Somerset Maugham, Volume 2

  • by W. Somerset Maugham
  • Narrated by Charlton Griffin
  • 4 hrs and 35 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

William Somerset Maugham (1874 - 1965), novelist, playwright, short-story writer, and the highest paid author in the world in the 1930's, nevertheless failed to gain the critical acclaim he so desperately wanted during his lifetime. "I have never pretended to be anything but a story teller. It has amused me to tell stories and I have told a great many. It is a misfortune for me that the telling of a story just for the sake of the story is not an activity that is in favor with the intelligentsia. I endeavor to bear my misfortunes with fortitude," he wrote. Today, he is considered one of the finest short story writers of all time.There are seven stories in Volume 2.
In "An Official Position," to improve his lot, a prisoner in a French penalcolony accepts an odious job...and the consequences.In "Home," after a lifetime of living abroad, a penniless old sailor finallycomes home.
"Red" is a poignant love story of youth, beauty, and the fleeting moments of ecstasy that pass away only too soon.
In "Mayhew," a lawyer decides to make a clean break with his past and moves toCapri.
In "In A Strange Land," while traveling in Turkey, a vacationer meets an extraordinary English woman.
In "The Alien Corn," a young Jewish man devotes himself to the pursuit of music over the violent objections of his aristocratic family. As the family wrestles with its Jewish identity, the son flings himself headlong into the Bohemian world of performing artists.
In "The Verger," when a lowly verger is fired because of his illiteracy, it turns out to be his lucky day.

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What the Critics Say



Winner, 2003 Audie Award, Classic Fiction
" "Charlton Griffin narrates with the ease of an urbane man of the world, but recreates Maugham's strange characters with pleasure and gusto. While his narrative voice is graceful and compelling, his characterizations are acutely individual, even bizarre. Their voices linger in our memory long after the tape is off." (AudioFile)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Excellent performance

It is hard to believe that there is only one narrator in this production. This is more like listening to a play with several actors than just a book being read. It is truly one of the best experiences I've had in audiobooks, and it was not only because of the great prose of Maugham, but also the amazing work of Charlton Griffin.
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- Roy

Acute observations of man

Maugham's observations of the weakness and strengths of men (and sometimes women) set in every corner of the world are entrancing. The colour and exotic locations are a backdrop for accounts of human universals; death love and ambition. Charlton Griffins mellow voice is ideal for the stories though his almost but not quite British accent at times is annoying.
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- Simon Bowler

Book Details

  • Release Date: 01-22-2004
  • Publisher: Audio Connoisseur