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Extended Audio Sample Babbitt Audiobook, by Sinclair Lewis Click for printable size audiobook cover
3.49 out of 53.49 out of 53.49 out of 53.49 out of 53.49 out of 5 3.49 (108 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Sinclair Lewis Narrator: Grover Gardner Publisher: Craig Black Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: April 2011 ISBN: 9781470801229
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In this sardonic portrait of the up-and-coming middle class during the prosperous 1920s, On the surface, everything is all right with Babbitt’s world of the solid, successful businessman. But in reality, George F. Babbitt is a lonely, middle-aged man. He doesn’t understand his family, has an unsuccessful attempt at an affair, and is almost financially ruined when he dares to voice sympathy for some striking workers. Babbitt finds that his only safety lies deep in the fold of those who play it safe. He is a man who has added a new word to our language: a “Babbitt,” meaning someone who conforms unthinkingly, a sheep.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “[It is] by its hardness, its efficiency, its compactness that Mr. Lewis’ work excels.”

    Virginia Woolf

  • “Sinclair Lewis is one of the major prophets of our time.”

    William Allen White, Pulitzer Prize winner

  • “Mr. Lewis is a genius…an idealist, an artist.”

    London Observer

  • Babbitt is an authentic modern American classic, a biting satire of middle-American values that retains much of its poignancy today.”

    Library Journal

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Don | 2/20/2014

    " Another classic by Sinclair Lewis. No my favorite book by him but well worth reading. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Teresa Dicentra | 2/16/2014

    " Listening to on audio on smart phone. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Lisa Weber | 2/15/2014

    " I listened to this as an audio book, usually before bed at night, and found it to be a perfect inducement to a drug-free sleep. I found it uninteresting, trite, hopelessly given to details I would rather not dwell upon. I made it to around chapter 7 or so, and then gave it up for a lost cause. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Meg | 2/11/2014

    " I always reread this when I feel overwhelmed by flim-flammery. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Lisa Weber | 2/8/2014

    " I listened to this as an audio book, usually before bed at night, and found it to be a perfect inducement to a drug-free sleep. I found it uninteresting, trite, hopelessly given to details I would rather not dwell upon. I made it to around chapter 7 or so, and then gave it up for a lost cause. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Alyson | 2/2/2014

    " I read every word of the first twelve chapters of this book, and began chapter 13 but didn't finish it. The book sat unopened, untouched, for more than a month. This is from the Wikipedia article on the book, and I agree wholeheartedly: "The middle third of the novel reveals Babbitt in various settings: on vacation, attending a business convention, campaigning for the conservative mayoral candidate, giving dinner parties, giving speeches, attempting (in vain) to climb socially, serving as a member of the Sunday School Advisory Committee of the Chatham Road Presbyterian Church, and so on. This section of the novel has drawn criticism about the thread of the plot becoming lost; critics have argued that Lewis seems to move aimlessly from one set-piece to another." It was fiercely aimless and had no thread whatsoever. I began to wonder if he would ever do more than drive to work, drive back again, and sit in the living room after dinner reading his newspaper, because we got that in great detail over and over. The amusing thing about the book is the lexicon of slang. It's a piece of cake to understand, but evidently when this book was released in England it had to have a glossary inserted. The slang, the spoken language, is an absolute hoot. If you're not after plot or anything more than a day-to-day description of life in cities in the midwest in the very early 1920s, it's great for that. The writing is amusing (props to Sinclair Lewis, and Babbitt is a comical character. We can see him much more clearly than he can see himself. But in terms of plot, sigh. It was hard to muscle through. I confess that I finally finished it only with help from SparkNotes and MonkeyNotes online. I had to read the quick summaries to figure out if anything interesting was going to happen (funnily, it began to go pear-shaped later on in the very chapter 13 I had abandoned) and I'd go and read a bit of that chapter then move on to summaries again. So now I know the SparkNotes version of Babbitt, and have read, I'd estimate, 50% of the book. It was mildly interesting, but just not my cup of tea. I read it online at Bartleby. If by any chance you want to take a peek: Babbitt by Sinclair Lewis. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Carl | 2/2/2014

    " Like Hardy, one of my formerly favorite authors who I haven't read in years. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Brian | 2/1/2014

    " Tiresome and unconvincing. The story and characters take a back seat to Sinclair Lewis' political bellyaching. I know this is supposed to be satire but, from a reader's perspective, it's nice to have something real to connect with emotionally in a story. "Babbitt" is little more than a tirade. And nobody likes being shouted at. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Behzad | 1/25/2014

    " Great modern book, yet I expected a way more radical ending. Good fiction though, I recommend it to everyone. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Greg Linster | 1/25/2014

    " I wanted to love this novel, I really did. However, despite its intriguing message about social mores and conformity, I could not get over the American 1920's language that it was penned in. Although I personally found a strange sense of satisfaction in having finished it, I wouldn't recommend this book without heeding that warning. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Larry Schlesinger | 1/25/2014

    " I parable about middle-class America, the American dream and the life of George Babbitt, real estate salesman in the fictious town of Zenith. A frustrated, somewhat corrupt businessman with dreams of making it big, then develops some kind of moral fibre, only to give it all up to be "one of the boys" in the social club again. Reads a bit like George Orwell's "Coming up for air". "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Chris | 1/24/2014

    " A little slow, but that's part of the point. Makes you look in the mirror and hope you're not thaaat much like Babbitt. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Alex | 1/19/2014

    " I either deserve a medal or a slap in the face for finishing this one. I can't decide. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Cate Nauhauser | 1/19/2014

    " good book, relevant to the times and shows a good view of how things were "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Linda | 1/17/2014

    " One of the classics.....conformity helps you get along in the world. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Caren | 1/10/2014

    " I had never read anything by Sinclair Lewis, but he was put on my radar when it was mentioned in a library school class that the heroine of his book "Main Street" began her 'career' as a librarian. When I saw the audio version of "Babbitt" at the library, I decided to give it a listen. I was drawn in immediately by the detailed description of daily life in the USA in 1920. George F. Babbitt is a middle-aged realtor living in Zenith, a medium-sized town in middle America. Lewis' portrait of Babbitt is a satirical portrait of the mindset of the average American in his day. Reading it, knowing the Depression is on the horizon, it seemed to coincide with the 1990s in our own generation, and seemed hauntingly familiar. You can stand back and see how Lewis is poking fun at Babbitt's ideas, yet as the story unfolds, you see that Lewis has great empathy for this American everyman. Above all, this book allows a fascinating peek into the world of my grandparents. I can recongnize some of the ideas as those I heard from them and from my parents. It is the thinking upon which, for better or worse, the current generation was built. Babbitt's fictitious town, Zenith, may have been modeled on Cincinnati, Ohio, where Lewis spent considerable time while researching the book. While listening, I used the notes in the "Library of America" printed version for some explanation of details unfamiliar to modern readers. Beyond the story itself, I found the ideas of people living in the 1920s and how these ideas have evolved in our own time, to be very interesting. The audio version I listened to was read by George Guidall and was extrememly well-done. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kyle | 1/10/2014

    " One of those intriguing books that draws you in but is not exciting. Sinclair Lewis is a wonderful author writing about everyday life. This book is very ecclesisastical. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Carla | 1/6/2014

    " Part of my "classics" reading, and I enjoyed it - the language was charmingly "old fashioned", and it really gave me a slice of life picture of small city, mid-Century America. Just the term "booster" really came alive for me! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Robin Laws | 1/5/2014

    " No one writes satirical architecture descriptions like Sinclair Lewis. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Joyce | 1/4/2014

    " I couldn't stand this book. I cared nothing about any of the characters or the story. A bore! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 George | 1/2/2014

    " In the satirical tale of Midwestern realtor George F. Babbitt, Lewis created a picture of conformity and materialism that remains strikingly relevant, despite the 20s slang and the debating over whether to finally spring for that closed-top car. Many readers will struggle to like Babbitt the man, so if you need to like the main character of a book, this one might leave you feeling somewhat dissatisfied. Babbitt is straight, pull-no-punches satire, and spends little time on plot or character development (something that H.L. Mencken, one of its supporters, cheered in an early review). Most of its themes have been dealt with in many a book, movie, and TV show in recent decades -- the underlying soullessness of conformity, the terrifying power of public opinion, the midlife crisis, corruption and hypocrisy -- but the sharpness of Lewis's critique does not suffer because of it. If you're at all interested in the 1920s, I highly recommend this book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 John | 1/2/2014

    " Heartfelt illumination of the American everyman blusterer inside all of us, but whom many of us strangled at birth. I felt like I knew Babbitt before the end of the novel, and even sympathized with many of his fears and anxieties, even though I see his world from the outside. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kathy | 12/21/2013

    " Public domain downloaded to my Kindle. I enjoyed this more than "Main Street", the novel that Lewis is better known for. Even though the plot stuttered and stopped and repeated itself, the theme is so amazingly contemporary that everyone should read this book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Chris Brimmer | 12/11/2013

    " Lewis at his cynical best. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Shawna | 12/11/2013

    " Third time through this book over the years. I have always loved how I really feel Babbitt's anger, frustrations, sadness, and then grudging acceptance that he just can't break out of the world he thought he wanted and worked so hard to construct. It feels like a war Babbitt wages with himself and loses. When Babbitt's wife is away with her sister and he takes up with "The Bunch" and Tanis, you go though the desperation and chaotic behavior right beside him. And, as always, Lewis captures that twilight age of the Roaring 20s and the early years of the Depression with his unique style. He's often overshadowed by Fitzgerald, which isn't fair to Lewis. Or Fritzgerald. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Polina Semenova | 11/28/2013

    " Ennui, depression, rebellion, guilt, allegiance, it's all there. I loved it. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Carla | 11/27/2013

    " Part of my "classics" reading, and I enjoyed it - the language was charmingly "old fashioned", and it really gave me a slice of life picture of small city, mid-Century America. Just the term "booster" really came alive for me! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Leonard | 11/21/2013

    " I listened to the recorded version of Babbitt and I admit it's the first time I've read anything by Lewis. I found it very good and will try to read some more of his work soon. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kyrie | 11/18/2013

    " Lewis takes on the typical American who was trying to get ahead both socially and financially and does so with wicked insight. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Andrew | 11/17/2013

    " A tale of the danger involved in straying too far from an ideology. Personally, I found Babbitt a little too one-dimensional and banal, which I think is what Lewis was aiming for, but it made for a disinteresting read for me. I did like Lewis' use of natural language. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Andrew David | 11/8/2013

    " I only made it half way through this boring saga of one man's empty attempts to be number one, and that was more than enough. Please spare yourself. How could this ever get a Pulitzer? "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Marc | 11/5/2013

    " My hometown was not what I thought it was. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ian | 11/2/2013

    " Perfect character study of a middle class business man on the make in the boom of the early twenties USA. The achievement ofthe novel is to make you feel for the shallowness of the existence of George F. Babbitt and empathise with him even though he is an arrogant, self-centred bumptious oaf. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kathy | 10/26/2013

    " Public domain downloaded to my Kindle. I enjoyed this more than "Main Street", the novel that Lewis is better known for. Even though the plot stuttered and stopped and repeated itself, the theme is so amazingly contemporary that everyone should read this book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jon | 10/16/2013

    " Less a novel than a ripping good expose of shallow American materialism. Was this really written in 1920? "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Brent | 10/5/2013

    " Although this is a fantastic book, it's unsettling that it's message is still so poignant. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Cdrueallen | 10/2/2013

    " BABBITT is the devastatingly funny yet still endearing portrait of George Babbitt, a suburban real estate broker who is 46 in 1920. It's fascinating and disturbing when reading BABBITT to realize how little American business, American marriages, and American men have changed in the past 91 years. In 1920 gas cost 31 cents a gallon, liquor was illegal though in plentiful supply, and the internet had yet to be imagined, but George's emotional mix of bluster, bullying, babyish pouting, and his desperate need to be loved and admired are all but eternal. He's Homer Simpson in frameless glasses and a well-cut gray suit. His world of new suburbs built over old orchards, shady real-estate deals, conventions and lunches at which the gold old boys puff themselves up, drink themselves silly, and rant about the union-loving socialists who are killing the country hasn't changed much either. The genius of BABBITT is that it evokes my compassion for the kind of man I fear and despise when I encounter him in daily life. BABBITT is usually described as an acutely observed but somewhat poorly written novel about business. I'd say it's a brilliantly written novel about American marriage, and the extension of the social contract of marriage to the larger framework of American social life. As in MAIN STREET and DODSWORTH, BABBITT's focus is on the marital power struggle, where one party strives to enforce conformity to a shallow social order and the other fights for a more meaningful life. In MAIN STREET the wife was the rebel. In BABBITT it's George who longs to flee from the boredom of business, church, golf, and middle-aged marriage to "darkness beyond mysterious groves" with a dream girl who is slim, pale, and eager. George's wife Myra represents the forces of habit, affection, and convention that keep George from pursuing his dreams. In MAIN STREET, Lewis's sympathies are with the artistic woman who's oppressed by marriage and a small town. In BABBITT, we get the husband's point of view on the marriage, but Lewis doesn't fail to observe said husband with an amusingly ironic wife-shaped eye. By the time he wrote DODSWORTH, Lewis had lost his ironic perspective and gone over to a whole-hearted defense of the alcoholic overbearing husband. Which makes BABBITT, where the author doesn't take sides as he describes George and Myra fighting for the upper hand, Lewis's masterpiece. BABBITT was criticized by Mark Schorer, Lewis's principal biographer, for its "aesthetic crudities"; by Edith Wharton, to whom BABBITT was dedicated, for its "excess of slang"; and by Gore Vidal for its lack of plot. Probably they were all a little shocked by the radical technical innovations of a best-selling author. BABBITT's plotless pastiche of voices, including voices from social classes not usually thought of (certainly not by aristocratic Ms. Wharton) as a proper subject for literature, prefigures the postmodern techniques of writers such as William Gaddis, Donald Barthelme, and William Burroughs. And Lewis's technique was no accident: as a man who'd made money selling plots to Jack London and had his most famous portrait done by Dadaist Man Ray Lewis certainly knew what he was doing when he structured BABBITT as a series of scenes that reveal George, mostly through dialogue, and from a succession of cubist angles. BABBITT resolves not with a dramatic climax but in an ironic circle when George, who in the first scene complains to his wife of a pain in his side that he thinks might be appendicitis, is in the end brought back to his marriage and his social group by his wife's operation for appendicitis. What's as remarkable as Lewis's technical innovations is that in spite of them BABBITT remains highly readable ninety years after it was written. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Tara | 9/28/2013

    " It starts out slow, but wowie-zowie this sure packs a punch at the end. I love the way Lewis comments on the condition of man, and does so cynically with super heavy themes, while keeping things funny enough that I chuckled often. Even though it's definitely a "period piece" (Jazz Age Middle America), this is very, very pertinent still. I'll definitely be picking up his other works, starting with Main Street. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Mlt205 | 9/26/2013

    " I couldn't get into this book. The story was very slow to get going and it didn't go anywhere once it did. A nice happy ending however. Maybe my issues with the book stem from a lack of understanding of the time in which it was written, but I would not recommend this book to others. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 T | 9/26/2013

    " Important to read but slow going getting through all the old-fashioned slang. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lisa | 9/8/2013

    " I read this on in high school and I don't remember a thing about it. Oops. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Daniel Burton-Rose | 8/19/2013

    " How do you make a novel about a boring protagonist interesting? "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Erin | 8/19/2013

    " I read this book in high school and I don't think I've read it since until now. A lot to think about on this one. I need to mull it over and then I'll write a more full review... "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Julie | 8/2/2013

    " It's definitely not a page turner, but the descriptive writing paints a vivid picture of this horrid man and his horrid family. A worthwhile character study! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 C. | 7/25/2013

    " This is the original Fight Club. Babbit, is so content with his Father's Knows Best suburban life style. But becomes so discontent and distracted by his miserable days at the job. Way ahead of it's time, or maybe hating your job is timeless. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Barb | 6/23/2013

    " Not particularly stimulating, but an interesting reflection of the times - early 20th century, a depiction of the "working man" and the struggles to achieve success and a place in society complete with a mid life crisis "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Bob | 6/16/2013

    " A classic. About 90 years old, one of the first books by an American-- a Yale man, a socialist skewering a businessman. Most of the book is a day in his life- it shows you all of his life. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Carrie | 6/6/2013

    " A man having a mid-life crisis...along with many changes in the early 1920's US. This is a good book for men to read too. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Polina Semenova | 5/9/2013

    " Ennui, depression, rebellion, guilt, allegiance, it's all there. I loved it. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jagadish | 5/3/2013

    " A most poignant look at America of Bruce Barton "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Ashley (cnthrdlywt2bwz) | 2/7/2013

    " I can see why this book is deemed as "great", but when I read this in high school, it was impossibly dull and all kinds of boring. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Todd Johnson | 1/25/2013

    " One of those books that I never quite finished in college. I'm glad I went back because it's a nice character study. A little more challenging reading, but worth it. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Laura | 1/20/2013

    " i read this in my modern lit class, and it was...ok. i think that after reading "the wasteland" and gatsby, it just paled in comparison. maybe if i read it again, it will be a different story. not fair to compare anything to eliot or fitzgerald, in my opinion. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Tom | 12/29/2012

    " The essential story of smug small town boosterism. Excellent read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 John | 11/9/2012

    " Heartfelt illumination of the American everyman blusterer inside all of us, but whom many of us strangled at birth. I felt like I knew Babbitt before the end of the novel, and even sympathized with many of his fears and anxieties, even though I see his world from the outside. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Behzad | 10/20/2012

    " Great modern book, yet I expected a way more radical ending. Good fiction though, I recommend it to everyone. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sally | 10/19/2012

    " A man trying unsuccessfully to escape the emptiness of his life. Well written. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Jennifer | 9/25/2012

    " I loved this book as a teenager. I found it pretty heavy going at this point. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Alicia | 9/23/2012

    " A mix - slightly tedious, but width occasional perfect sentences that were incredibly witty and insightful. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Kim Mack | 8/18/2012

    " Could not get into it. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Kim Mack | 8/9/2012

    " Could not get into it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sarah | 8/8/2012

    " Still relevant almost 100 years later "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Beth | 7/19/2012

    " This book has been on my to-read list for years, and happily I finally got around to it. The writing is phenomenal, and the description of Babbitt's constant hypocrisy and self-aggrandizement in his relationships with others is, sadly, still very recognizable. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ian | 7/16/2012

    " Perfect character study of a middle class business man on the make in the boom of the early twenties USA. The achievement ofthe novel is to make you feel for the shallowness of the existence of George F. Babbitt and empathise with him even though he is an arrogant, self-centred bumptious oaf. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kyrie | 7/7/2012

    " Lewis takes on the typical American who was trying to get ahead both socially and financially and does so with wicked insight. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Lindsay Downs | 6/15/2012

    " I'm having trouble getting through it, but I appreciate the depiction of the 1920s. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 E | 4/21/2012

    " Exactly ninety years later, nothing but the language seems dated. Middle class crises are alive and well, unresolved, unending. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Melissa Mclimans | 4/10/2012

    " Sometimes over the top. Funny, sad, oddly comforting knowing that sometimes things just don't change all that much. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Scott Ford | 4/1/2012

    " Written in 1922, Lewis' characterization of the American middle class holds up very well after eighty years! A flawed protagonist, intent on doing his duty, and resentful of never allowing himself the chance to rebel. A prototype for decades of writers. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Antediluvianbychoice | 3/26/2012

    " Need to reread this one. An assigned book at 15 does NOT necessarily give you a fair view of an author's worth or skill. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Tyson | 2/19/2012

    " I just couldn't get into Babbit even though it's thought of by many as a masterpiece. I tried reading it at the beach and attribute my lack of interest to the fact it just isn't beach reading. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Dan | 2/6/2012

    " middle class life never looked so bad / good . "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Beth | 12/9/2011

    " This was a pretty cool book. Not something I would have read on my own, but I'm glad I did. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Brent | 11/24/2011

    " Although this is a fantastic book, it's unsettling that it's message is still so poignant. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Don | 11/8/2011

    " Another classic by Sinclair Lewis. No my favorite book by him but well worth reading. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Stephanie | 10/23/2011

    " Although well-written, it was just too depressing for my taste. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Steven Mclellan | 9/26/2011

    " Too much randomness. could have been alot shorter. Did not enjoy. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Lyn | 7/18/2011

    " It always amazes me how human nature does not change. This book was written in and about the 1920's but except for some anachronistic language, could have been written today. This was also a fun glimpse at Prohibition era America. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Frank | 6/29/2011

    " I can't read this, I gave up about a fifth of the way through, it seemed much too dated (and the characterization too flat and unsympathetic) to hold my interet. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Vladimir | 6/9/2011

    " Very sarcastic, describing a life and middle-age crisis of a businessman and society, where he is living in. Still very actual. Sometimes you can stop, then look inside of yourself and find a part of Babbit there. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Burley | 5/26/2011

    " Sinclair Lewis has middle America down to the dusty streets. George Babbitt's superlative marketing language made me look differently at all advertising. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Chris | 5/19/2011

    " Working on entering some more prep school reads now. My favorite SL quote: "I love my country but some- times I don't like it very much". Amen to that. The only SL book I've read except for the sex scenes
    between Lulu Baines and Elmer Gantry. Date read is a guess. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Rebecca | 4/18/2011

    " This book grew on my. I found myself missing the way Babbitt talked. Interesting story about conformity. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 K.h.tracey | 4/10/2011

    " Excellent - very funny satire on America, though would recommend his Main Street over Babbitt. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Elaine | 4/5/2011

    " One of my all time favorites. A pompous, self-important twit finds his life growing increasingly complicated and vexing. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Andrew | 3/27/2011

    " I only made it half way through this boring saga of one man's empty attempts to be number one, and that was more than enough. Please spare yourself. How could this ever get a Pulitzer? "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Maureen | 3/1/2011

    " Yeah a pretty good book. Found it on a shelf in my parent's house ages ago and decided to read it... funny story (quite sardonic) about a man's modern life -- and really utter boredom in the suburbs. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Dennis | 2/14/2011

    " Wow. Disingenuously patriotic, union-busting capitalists in the midwest ... Some things never change. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jon | 2/13/2011

    " Less a novel than a ripping good expose of shallow American materialism. Was this really written in 1920? "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lindsey | 2/9/2011

    " This book took a little while to get into, but eventually was an enjoyable read. It takes place in the early 20th century and is a satirical look at American culture. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Stuart | 2/6/2011

    " So my friends and I call all the suburban-exurban wasteland along interstates "Bloptown" Little did I know Sinclair Lewis captured the essence of the modern meatblop some 90 years ago. Bravo Sinclair, bravo. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Elaine | 2/2/2011

    " Read this for a book report in high school. I remember liking it-very detailed sentences, felt very grown-up reading it. Middle-class American businessman struggles with family matters. "

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About the Author
Author Sinclair Lewis

Harry Sinclair Lewis (1885–1951), the son of a country doctor, was born in Sauk Centre, Minnesota. He attended Yale University, where he was editor of the literary magazine, and graduated in 1907. After a few of his stories had appeared in magazines and his first novel, Our Mr. Wrenn (1914), had been published, he was able to write full time. He was awarded the 1926 Pulitzer Prize for Arrowsmith (1925) but refused to accept the honor. However, he accepted the Nobel Prize awarded him in 1930. He was the first American to win the Nobel Prize for Literature.

About the Narrator

Grover Gardner (a.k.a. Tom Parker) is an award-winning narrator with over eight hundred titles to his credit. Named one of the “Best Voices of the Century” and a Golden Voice by AudioFile magazine, he has won three prestigious Audie Awards, was chosen Narrator of the Year for 2005 by Publishers Weekly, and has earned more than thirty Earphones Awards.