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Brideshead Revisited Audiobook, by Evelyn Waugh Extended Sample Click for printable size audiobook cover
Author: Evelyn Waugh Narrator: Jeremy Irons Publisher: Hachette Book Group Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: December 2012 ISBN: 9781619693975
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (32,337 ratings) (rate this audio book)
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The wellsprings of desire and the impediments to love come brilliantly into focus in Evelyn Waugh’s masterpiece—a novel that immerses us in the glittering and seductive world of English aristocracy in the waning days of the empire.

Through the story of Charles Ryder’s entanglement with the Flytes, a great Catholic family, Evelyn Waugh charts the passing of the privileged world he knew in his own youth and vividly recalls the sensuous pleasures denied him by wartime austerities. At once romantic, sensuous, comic, and somber, Brideshead Revisited transcends Waugh’s early satiric explorations and reveals him to be an elegiac, lyrical novelist of the utmost feeling and lucidity.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Waugh’s most deeply felt novel…Brideshead Revisited tells an absorbing story in imaginative terms…Mr. Waugh is very definitely an artist.” 

    New York Times

  • “A many-faceted book…Beautifully [written] by one of the most exhilarating stylists of our time.” 


  • “First and last an enchanting story…Brideshead Revisited has a magic that is rare in current literature. It is a world in itself, and the reader lives in it and is loath to leave it when the last page is turned.”

    Saturday Review

  • “One of Waugh’s finest accomplishments…A superb book.”, editorial review

  • “[Irons’] subtle, complete characterizations highlight Waugh’s ear for the aristocratic mores of the time. Fervent Anglophiles will be thrilled by this excellent rendition of a favorite.”

    Publishers Weekly (audio review)

  • “Academy Award winner Jeremy Irons demonstrates impressive skill in his performance of Brideshead Revisited. From the charming yet doomed Lord Sebastian Flyte to the absurd, stuttering Anthony Blanche, Irons manages to capture the many nuances and subtleties of each character.”

    Library Journal (audio review)

  • A New York Times Bestseller
  • One of Modern Library's 100 Best English-Language Novels of the Twentieth Century
  • One of Time Magazine's Best 100 English-Language Novels from 1923–2005

Listener Reviews

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  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Steve | 2/14/2014

    " Mr. Waugh is a most worthy practitioner of the art of writing fiction. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kelly | 2/9/2014

    " Great first half but got a little bored near the end, the lack of Sebastian was disappointing. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 V.j. | 2/8/2014

    " It was a little painful to read, as I often get lost in the flow of writing and conversational style. I often found myself yawning over the characters' discussions; darting from one point to the next and then all of a sudden, shifting to a different time frame from the narrator's recollections. However, the story is intriguing enough for me to keep on reading -- mostly because I wanted to know what happens to Sebastian, who gradually disappeared from the story. "Brideshead Revisited" is laden with spiritual tones drawn heavily from Catholicism. This didn't immediately occur to me as my impression of the book was that it was themed on a life of despondency from start to finish -- a description of a hellish life on earth. It turns out, the story's about 'redemption' in a really muddled sort of way. I'm now about to watch the TV adaptation of it. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Margot | 1/24/2014

    " The swan song of an ancient, aristocratic beauty "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Vionna | 1/24/2014

    " This is a book to read slowly to savor Mr Waugh's style of writing. His complex sentences describe not only physical surroundings, but emotions, thoughts and self-evaluation. His characters are so well defined and portray the aristrocratic society in England between the world wars. You follow the lives of the Marchmains of Brideshead through turbulent years. I was sorry when the book ended and I do plan on re-reading it again in the future. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Wagga | 1/12/2014

    " A favourite era, favourite setting, fascinating characters and beautiful writing. Worth reading regularly. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Nadia | 1/6/2014

    " This is one of the books that I re-read every year... always find something new, I love it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kerri | 11/23/2013

    " Great story about the end of the aristocracy in England. The house becomes a character in its own right and is present throughout the book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Franz | 11/19/2013

    " A complex story that is consistently misunderstood by many people. The story of relationships,human frailty and ultimately of conversion. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 LindyLouMac | 11/17/2013

    " A favourite of mine had not realised I had not listed it here before. Also made into an excellent television series. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Ross | 9/11/2013

    " Who knew war and Christian propaganda could be so fun? "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Sean | 6/7/2013

    " Maybe I wanted something more from Brideshead after hearing about for so many years. But I found the whole thing to be a tad sappy and boring. Yet I did enjoy the frothy escapist quality of Waugh's writing and there are certainly worse ways to spend your time. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kate | 5/1/2013

    " Love the sequence of this book. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Betsy | 4/5/2013

    " I liked the way this book dealt with the role of Catholicism in a particular family, and the different relationship each member had with the faith. Even those who rejected faith couldn't completely let it go. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Edie | 3/29/2013

    " Not impressed by the flowery prose. As for the character of Sebastian, no college aged man should behave like a repressed 6-year-old girl unless he is mentally ill or developmentally challenged. Creepy. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Marianne | 3/7/2013

    " I adore this book. Beautifully sad, romantic and nostalgic all at once. The ties that bind Charles to the Flyte family bind the reader to the book. The scenes set in Venice are particularly moving and one starts to grieve for Charles and Sebastian. "

About the Author

Evelyn Waugh (1903–1966) was born October 28, 1903 in London, England. After short periods as an art student and schoolmaster, he devoted himself to travel and to the writing of novels. His novels are unusually highly wrought and precisely written. Those written before 1939 may be described as satirical. During World War II his writing took a more serious and ambitious turn. Waugh also wrote travel books. 

About the Narrator

Jeremy Irons is one of fewer than a dozen actors to have won the Triple Crown of Acting: an Oscar, Emmy, and Tony award, with a Golden Globe thrown in for good measure. His distinctive, haunting voice has seen him cast as the villain in many a movie, though his abundant work in both film and theater has garnered him many leading roles as well. Among his many film credits are Kingdom of Heaven, Being Julia, The Man in the Iron Mask, The Lion King, and Die Hard 3: With a Vengeance.