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Download Hard Times Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample Hard Times, by Charles Dickens Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (20,335 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Charles Dickens, Simon Prebble Narrator: Simon Prebble Publisher: Tantor Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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Red brick, machinery, and smoke-darkened chimneys; reason, facts, and statistics: this is the world of Coketown, the depressed mill town that is the setting for one of Charles Dickens’ most powerful and unforgettable novels.

The highest priority for Thomas Gradgrind, head of the Gradgrind model day school, is his version of education—feeding the mind while starving the soul and spirit. Inflexible and unyielding, he places conformity above curiosity and sense over sentiment … only to find himself betrayed by the very standards that govern his own unhappy life.

Hard Times is Dickens’ scathing portrait of Victorian industrial society and its misapplied utilitarian philosophy. And Thomas Gradgrind is one of his most richly dimensional, memorable characters. Filled with the details and wonders of small-town life, Hard Times is also a daring novel of ideas—and ultimately a celebration of love, hope, and the limitless possibilities of the imagination.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Charles Dickens offers Simon Prebble every opportunity to show off his talent.”


Listener Opinions

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 by Ari | 2/19/2014

    " I tried. I just couldn't like it. This might be a trend I'm forming toward Dickens. And I'm okay with that. I'll just watch the Mickey Mouse version of A Christmas Story if I really feel like I need some Dickens in my life. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Patricia | 2/17/2014

    " A classic must-read. The plot is prevalent with the time. It would probably help to know what was going on in that era to fully understand the motivations of several characters. Overall, a good read. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Roxana | 2/17/2014

    " As a literary theorist, yes, there is much that can be done with this novel; however there is very little to be had in terms of pleasure. If you want an indictment against 19th century industry and education, this is where to go, yet I can assure you in terms of pleasure this is Dickens' worst novel. You have to slog through a quagmire before you are in the least bit interested in the destinies of his flat and inpaulsable characters. It was his least popular novel (serialized) for a good reason. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Janet Lynch | 2/12/2014

    " I thoroughly enjoyed this work, and found it to be the most satirical and politically charged of all the Dickens I've read thus far. I'm always amazed at Dickens plotting. Characters, it seems, are drawn then forgotten, yet come back with force. "

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