Paradise Lost

  • by John Milton
  • Narrated by Anton Lesser
  • 10 hrs and 45 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

"Of Man's First Disobedience, and the Fruit
Of that Forbidden Tree, whose mortal taste
Brought Death into the World, and all our woe...."So begins the greatest epic poem in the English language. In words remarkable for their richness of rhythm and imagery, Milton tells the story of man's creation, fall, and redemption, "to justify the ways of God to men". Here, unabridged, and told with exceptional sensitivity and power by Anton Lesser, is the plight of Adam and Eve, the ambition and vengefulness of Satan and his cohorts.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Great Epic Poem Narrated Well

This edition of Paradise Lost seems superior to the one narrated by Fredrick Davidson, which is also available on Audible. Davidson'a intonations are more emphatic, but he misses the stately regality and austerity which are more appropriate for this epic.

Short music precedes each of the books of the poem, the baroque nature of which helps to prime the reader for a magnificent theme. Paradise Lost itself has been compared to organ music, and the analogy is an apt one.

Of course, listening to this audiobook with full perception requires wholehearted attention; it is not the one to mitigate the boredom of jogging or divert the mind while doing laundry.
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- David

Rewarding, but not for the faint-of-heart!

Have you ever read the Book of Job?
In the Book of Job, Lucifer approaches God and tells him that he has been to and fro across the entire world, and basically states that everyone in the world is a sinner and deserves to go to hell (paraphrase).

God replies by asking Lucifer if he has seen his servant Job. Satan responds that Job is only good, because of all the good things God has blessed him with. "take away all those good things, and Job will curse God". And thus begins the memorable story of Job's testing by Satan, God's protection, and the ultimate blessing on Job for his faith in God.

In Job, the reader is given a rare glimpse into some Heavenly workings, such as: what the armies of Heaven can be like, the Throne Room of God, Temptation from spiritual forces, and how God responds to rebel angels, and etc...

Milton, in his book Paradise Lost, has taken the same approach in story-telling to show how Satan led one-third of the angels of Heaven in an attempt to usurp the throne of God for their own glory, God's reprisal, and later how the Fallen sought to disrupt God's creation(s).

Although published in 1667, 'Paradise Lost' carries the power of religious truth that is still relevant today. The language, however, can present problems for modern ears. Milton seems to especially love to use words like: adamantine, obdurate, importune, and etc... Milton was obviously creating high-poetry on par with his subject, though sometimes it can feel almost too lofty to be attainable. The imagery, if patient, can be striking and profound, when Milton's voice is not so present.

Anton Lesser does a fine job of speaking life into the words without seeming artificial (though occasionally it can take on the tone of a Shakesperian play).

I would recommend this as an important listen, if you are in the right state of mind for such epic imagery (and sometimes tiring vocabulary).
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- Aaron

Book Details

  • Release Date: 12-15-2005
  • Publisher: Naxos AudioBooks