Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea

  • by Jules Verne
  • Narrated by Peter Husmann
  • 18 hrs and 44 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Jules Verne’s classic underwater tale.
A mysterious sea monster, theorized by some to be a giant narwhal, is sighted by ships of several nations; an ocean liner is also damaged by the creature. The United States government finally assembles an expedition to track down and destroy the menace. Professor Pierre Aronnax, a noted French marine biologist and narrator of the story, master harpoonist Ned Land, and Aronnax's faithful assistant Conseil join the expedition.
After much fruitless searching, the monster is found, and the ship charges into battle. During the fight, the ship's steering is damaged, and the three men are thrown overboard. They find themselves stranded on the "hide" of the creature, only to discover to their surprise that it is a large metal construct. They are quickly captured and brought inside the vessel, where they meet its enigmatic creator and commander, Captain Nemo.


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Great translation, so-so narration

I tried very hard to like this audiobook, because it uses the best public domain translation of Verne's masterpiece currently available: the first version of F. P. Walter's translation, which is available on Gutenberg and elsewhere. (Walter has since re-translated the book in a copyrighted anthology called "Amazing Journeys: Five Visionary Classics." This anthology is THE place to start if you're just getting interested in Verne. It's available from Amazon in both paper and Kindle versions and includes many illustrations from the original French editions.) Walter's translation is clear, accurate, and idiomatic.

Unfortunately, Peter Husmann's narration falls short on a couple of key points. First - and I admit this may be subjective - he sounds like he's outside the novel looking in, rather than "inhabiting" it. His tone is slightly condescending, as if he's talking down to the listener. He's reading the book out loud, not telling the story. It may be that this was a conscious choice aimed at making the book more accessible to younger readers, but I didn't enjoy it. (Playing it with Audible's 1.25x or even 1.5x option did help this a bit.)

He also mispronounces some of the names, Aronnax in particular. It's "Aaron-ax" - Husmann pronounces it "Aaron-no", as if it were spelled Aronnaux. I found this distracting. "Conseil" is also mispronounced - it should be con-SAY, not con-SAIL. (Understand that these are my American approximations of the French.)

I would love to see a different reader tackle Walter's translation - or, alternatively, to see Husmann have another try at this one: he's got a good, strong voice; can clearly distinguish between the different characters; and would benefit greatly from a more natural delivery. (Come to think of it, maybe what he was missing was a good director.) Doing this book is clearly a labor of love for Husmann: at the time I wrote this, the "list price" was less than $2.00.

Actually what I would REALLY love to see is someone tackling all five of the novels in the anthology: this one, "Journey to the Center of the Earth," "Around the World in 80 Days," "From the Earth to the Moon" and its sequel "Around the Moon." Verne is a wonderful writer, and so far the audio versions of his work have been kind of piecemeal.
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- Tad Davis

A classic that everyone should read.

This book was $2, and well worth it. I read the book 20 years ago, but decided to listen to it again. Buy the book and don't use the credit though. It will be the best $2 you spend on audible.

Written over 100 years ago it accurately predicts submarines, deep sea diving and other technologies. The narration by Peter Hausmann is great and the story can't be beat. I could write more, but at $2 try it for yourself.
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- John S "Avid audible listener for over 10 years."

Book Details

  • Release Date: 01-24-2013
  • Publisher: Trout Lake Media