The Spire

  • by William Golding
  • Narrated by Benedict Cumberbatch
  • 6 hrs and 49 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Dean Jocelin has a vision: that God has chosen him to erect a great spire on his cathedral. His mason anxiously advises against it, for the old cathedral was built without foundations. Nevertheless, the spire rises octagon upon octagon, pinnacle by pinnacle, until the stone pillars shriek and the ground beneath it swims. Its shadow falls ever darker on the world below, and on Dean Jocelin in particular.
From the author of Lord of the Flies, The Spire is a dark and powerful portrait of one man's will, and the folly that he creates.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Power through for a deep exam. of a man's psyche

Where does The Spire rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

This is a complicated book. I'm not sure it lends itself all that well to an audio version. But I'm still new to audio books, and find I like them best when I can be a tad bit distracted when listening to them. This is a not a book to digest while being distracted. It requires full attention.


What did you like best about this story?

I enjoyed the many levels this story exists on. It is a story, told from one (increasingly crazy) man about his desires, actions, and motivations.


What about Benedict Cumberbatch’s performance did you like?

I read this book as I listened, so I noticed he occasionally took small liberties. Jocelyn spoke with more contractions! So if you are a purist, know that. But the voices he infused the characters with were fantastic.


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- Leena

A relentless exploration of vanity

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

I am unsure if I would recommend this audiobook. This book might be better consumed ocularly via Kindle or (gasp) old-fashioned book. The story is predictable and I found the characters somewhat unremarkable - surprising for Mr. Golding. However, the writing was superb as usual. I think reading it would allow more appreciation of the language without relying upon attention-grabbing characters. That being said, Mr. Cumberbatch does a FANTASTIC job of narrating. I loved his voices, and his voice in general.


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- Kaui

Book Details

  • Release Date: 09-04-2014
  • Publisher: Canongate Books Ltd