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Extended Audio Sample Candide Audiobook, by Voltaire Click for printable size audiobook cover
4.06 out of 54.06 out of 54.06 out of 54.06 out of 54.06 out of 5 4.06 (51 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Voltaire Narrator: Tom Whitworth Publisher: Tantor Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: February 2009 ISBN: 9781400181087
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Caustic and hilarious, Candide has ranked as one of the world’s great satires since its first publication in 1759. It concerns the adventures of the youthful Candide, disciple of Dr. Pangloss.

In the course of his travels in Europe and South America, Candide sees and suffers such misfortune that it is difficult for him to believe that this is “the best of all possible worlds,” as Dr. Pangloss has assured him. It seems to be quite the opposite. In brilliantly skewering such naiveté, Voltaire mercilessly exposes and satirizes romance, science, philosophy, religion, and government—the ideas and forces that permeate and control the lives of men.

After many trials and travails, Candide is reunited with Cunegonde, his sweetheart. He then buys a little farm in Turkey where he and Cunegonde, Dr. Pangloss, and others retire. In the end, Candide decides that the best thing in the world is to cultivate one’s own garden.

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Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Michael (Tattoogirl Reads) | 1/27/2014

    " This was one of my favorite classics. I thought it was so funny and witty. It was great because it didn't strike you as funny until you'd already moved on to the next section. Then you'd laugh to yourself once you got it. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Guilt | 1/22/2014

    " i read it, its really quite light, quick. i believe the main complaint is only that not really knowing of all that much about the Enlightenment i can't really catch on to the satire as someone who's learned on the subject might. parts of it are really funny and overall i get the point of the story but i'm not a really big fan of humorous literature unless its in the vein of something like 'a confederacy of dunces'. i just found Candide to be almost flippant and lacking real substance but maybe that's how satires tend to be? not as good as i was led to believe. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Zé Ricardo | 1/20/2014

    " One of the best, ever. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Tom Rowe | 12/18/2013

    " What a terrible cover. Fast paced story. Short. Worth the time. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Mark | 12/14/2013

    " Interesting to read along with another tale of a windmill-chasing heart, The Boy with the Cuckoo-Clock Heart ... also French. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Paulisa Smith | 12/14/2013

    " I thought Candid was a very interesting story. The plot immediately grabbed my attention and did not let go until the end. Candide was such a good story to me, because the characters were believable. We have Candide the main character who in the beginning of the story seems to have a bit of bad luck. He does not have any real parents, he falls in love with Cunegode, a girl he is forbidden to have, he is kicked out from him home, and someone how falls into the army. This is just the beginning of the book. His character is relateable because we have all had those days or even weeks where things just can't seem to go right. Aside from the characters, this book is also very relatable to every day life. Though the values and cultures have changed, what remains is that candide went through a series of trials and tribulations to change and become the person that he is towards the end of the book. The same can be said for us. We experience different things, trials and errors, adventures and mishaps to help shape us into he people that we are supposed to be. Candide was full of adventure and life, and it was great to see how the characters evolved, and to me that is an important aspect in all books. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Sean Dhaliwal | 12/14/2013

    " I read this for my philosophy class. It was a life saver, especially after the boredom of Descartes and Leibniz. This book is a great satire and makes a mockery of Leibniz's philosophy about "the best of all possible worlds". Anyone who takes philosophy too seriously should read this. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Shaherzad ahmadi | 12/13/2013

    " I have to preface this by saying that I absolutely LOVE Voltaire, but this books makes absolutely no sense whatsoever. Three professors have tried to explain it's significance to me and I still don't get it. Read it - I promise the first thing out of your mouth will be "What the hell was that?" "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Bruce Deming | 11/23/2013

    " Very very funny satire. A classic. The book where the legend of El Dorado with the streets paved in gold. Excellent! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Trish | 11/23/2013

    " I really enjoyed this book.I listened to the audio verion and it was great. Candide is a guy everyone knows. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Bethany Jones | 11/1/2013

    " A hilarious commentary on philosophical optimism. I was surprised that such an old work could get me laughing so hard. While following Candide's adventures, the reader is prompted to find meaning in a life rife with terrible misfortune. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Alyse | 7/6/2013

    " One of my favorite books of all time. Optimism vs. pessimism, make our garden grow, Utopia not being the answer because people are bored and have nothing to work for. "Il faut cultiver notre jardin." "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Sian Lile-Pastore | 11/7/2012

    " i was glad when it was over. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 M. Crabtree | 9/12/2012

    " Interesting satire, but it does get repetitive in the miserable tragedies that keep befalling Candide. Of course, that's the point, but for a short book a lot of unbelievably awful things happen. Still, enjoyed the foray into philosophy.... "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Nicholas Mariner | 9/4/2012

    " I can get behind any book whose basic purpose is to say 'optimism is for chumps.' "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Nikki | 7/10/2012

    " Surprisingly quick and easy to read. I found it to be humorous and came away knowing exactly why Voltaire is known as a master satirist. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Stephanie Angelini | 6/16/2012

    " Though I do not believe it was Voltaire's intention, Candide betrays the sadness and absurdity of world without God and of life without love for God. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Darlene | 3/11/2012

    " read it just because i knew it was read by a lot of people. it was just okay "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Hannah | 5/13/2011

    " An old story that retains a fresh voice for modern readers and a curious contemplation on why people suffer. I'd like to read David Rachoff's new book, Half-Empty, for his thoughts on the role of optimism. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jeff | 5/12/2011

    " Excellent read. Entertaining story with just the right amount of sarcasm that makes it still funny today. Very well thought out and enacted by Voltaire. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Diana | 5/11/2011

    " Wonderfu, funny, wicked
    "Il faut culticer son jardin" is my philosophy of life "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Asma | 5/9/2011

    " It was hilarious ... too far from reality!! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Qursheedali | 5/9/2011

    " This novel is one of greatest novel all time. The storyline is beautiful. The events that take place is more thrillering after one another. nothing more to say but yes! "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Whoa | 5/9/2011

    " It was amusing. But I had a hard time trying to pay attention to it. The things that happen are absolutely ridiculous but its awesome in that way "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Pete | 5/7/2011

    " Just stay at home and work in your garden. That is happiness. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Brittany | 5/3/2011

    " I was surprised to find how much I enjoyed this book, even though it was written so long ago. I think I read it for a class in college, but I can't remember for what subject or for what purpose. You'll be surprised how many familiar themes and plots are crammed into this little book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Eric | 5/3/2011

    " Classic for a reason. Old humor that stands the test of time and is relevant today. Human nature must not change... "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Tessa | 5/3/2011

    " had to read it for my humanities class but i actually slightly enjoyed it as opposed to being tortured. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Wendi | 5/3/2011

    " The Enlightenment boiled down to sarcasm. Love this book. "

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About the Author
Author Voltaire

Voltaire (1694–1778), born François-Marie Arouet, was a French Enlightenment writer, historian, and philosopher known for his wit, philosophical sport, and defense of civil liberties. He produced works in almost every literary form, including poetry, novels, essays, plays, historical and scientific works, and over two thousand books and pamphlets.

About the Narrator

Tom Whitworth is a published author and a narrator. Some of his narrated works include The Lost World, The Wisdom of Father Brown, Candide, and The Metamorphosis, and Other Stories.