Download Dante Audiobook

Dante Audiobook, by R. W. B. Lewis Extended Sample Click for printable size audiobook cover
Author: R. W. B. Lewis Narrator: Grover Gardner Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: June 2001 ISBN: 9781415911266
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In Dante, Lewis traces the life and complex development—emotional, artistic, philosophical—of this supreme poet-historian, from his wanderings through Tuscan hills and splendid churches to his days as a young soldier fighting for democracy, to his civic leadership and years of embittered exile from the city that would fiercely reclaim him a century later. Lewis reveals the boy who first encounters the mythic Beatrice, the lyric poet obsessed with life and death, the grand master of dramatic narrative and allegory, and his monumental search for ultimate truth in The Divine Comedy. It is in this masterpiece of self-discovery and redemption that Lewis finds Dante’s own autobiography—and the sum of all his shifting passions and epiphanies.
“Lewis has an uncanny ability to capture crucial moments in Dante’s life and development as an artist.”—Booklist Download and start listening now!


Quotes & Awards

  • “History, literature, love, and religion come together in this graceful biography of the world’s most revered and influential poet…Lewis makes palpable the intellectual and imaginative energy that fired…The author notes autobiographical elements in all Dante’s works without trivializing their creative majesty, and if the poet’s personality is somewhat muffled across the distance of eight centuries, his artistic presence still ‘sparkles and sings and smiles like one of the spirits in Paradise.’ Drawing cogently (and with generous acknowledgment) on previous scholarship, this volume worthily fulfills its mission as an entry in the excellent Penguin Lives series of short biographies for the general reader.”, editorial review

  • “There could hardly be a more fitting biographer for Dante than Pulitzer Prize-winning literary critic Lewis, who has called Dante’s native city of Florence his second home for fifty years…Lewis shows an uncanny ability to capture crucial moments in Dante’s life and development as an artist….[and] manages to provide just enough context to illuminate the known facts of Dante’s life without losing the thread of his narrative…Always a memorable writer, Lewis shows himself a particularly spry craftsman here; this may well be one of the most pleasurable biographies of Dante, as well as one of the shortest. Anyone in search of a brief but eloquent guide to the life of the Florentine master should not hesitate to turn to this book.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “A luminous gem, this short biography gives us the greatest medieval poet through the eyes of one of our most acute modern critics. With lucid economy, Lewis sketches out the essential facts of Dante’s life…But Lewis always keeps his focus fixed on the power of Dante's imagination to transform terrestrial fact into the deathless art of poetry…With Lewis as our guide, readers explore a poet whose remarkable synthesis of satire and adoration would have a powerful effect on American letters through such writers as Emerson, Pound, and Eliot. The ideal commentary for readers discovering Dante for the first time.”


  • “This is a superb audio experience in every way. Lewis, the eminent critic and biographer of Edith Wharton, is also the author of a marvelous book on Florence. This brief biography, one in the Penguin Lives series of short critical biographies by esteemed authors and critics, captures the essence of Dante as a poet, a Florentine, and a citizen of the ages. The prose is lucid, Lewis’ retelling of Dante’s life and writings instantly engaging and inviting repeated listenings. Gardner’s fluency in English and Italian recreates the seamlessness of Lewis’ accomplished prose—for which he is both translator and critic. The Penguin Lives series, which has proved highly popular and is now being widely imitated in publishing, proves even more effective in an audio format. Here the melody of Dante’s lines and the succinctness of Lewis’ prose are enhanced in the reading, and…offers a complete text at the usual length of an abridgment. Winner of AudioFile Earphones Award.”


  • One of the 2001 New York Times Book Review 100 Notable Books for Nonfiction
  • Winner of an AudioFile Earphones Award

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About the Narrator

Grover Gardner (a.k.a. Tom Parker) is an award-winning narrator with over a thousand 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.