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Extended Audio Sample Jaws Audiobook, by Peter Benchley Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (40,416 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Peter Benchley Narrator: Erik Steele Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: January 2013 ISBN: 9781482974454
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With the 1974 publication of the novel Jaws and the release a year later of the film based on the book, an American cultural phenomenon was born. Today, the remarkable bestseller by Peter Benchley still towers as a thrilling classic of suspense, drama, and the eternal conflicts of man against nature … and man against himself.

As the movie continues to broadcast all over the world, entire generations may know the Jaws story only through its cinematic rendition. Those unfamiliar with the literary forerunner are in for a wonderful surprise, for the novel contains many twists of plot and character that were omitted in the film. Peter Benchley’s Jaws is an extraordinary experience of its own, a masterpiece as mesmerizing today as it was in 1974, when it first took us into the watery world of a creature designed by nature to kill … and into the terror it brings from the silent darkness of the deep.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “A tightly written, tautly paced study of terror...that still makes us tingle.”

    Washington Post

  • “A super-thriller! If you have any imagination at all, the book will give you the shivers.”

    New York Post

  • “Relentless terror.”

    Philadelphia Inquirer

  • “Pick up Jaws before midnight, read the first five pages, and I guarantee you’ll be putting it down breathless and stunned as dawn is breaking the next day.”

    Daily Express (London)

  • “Benchley keeps it moving, fulfills all expectations...Jaws is lean, all sinew, everything directed toward a climax that is implanted on the retina from the very first sentence.”

    New York magazine

  • “Narrator Erik Steele delivers a solid performance that brings new layers to the familiar characters of Hooper and Brody. Steele’s delivery has the characters speaking in a natural yet subtly terrified tone that seems to grant listeners access to the tale in a new way. Ultimately, the story is still as thrilling as ever...Erik Steele’s performance heightens the tension, thereby increasing the payoff at the conclusion.”

    AudioFile

  • “An eminently successful combination of adventure story and moral fable...The narrative is tense and absorbing, the characterization excellent, and the climactic shark hunt as exciting a sea story as one could want.”

    Library Journal

  • “A small gem of suspense fiction...Erik Steele, a theater and film actor, chomps into Benchley’s raw prose with appetite, enjoying every bite of gore and social observation. Making ample use of well-placed pauses and silences, Steele amplifies not only the suspense but Benchley’s surprisingly well-honed characterizations.”

    Publishers Weekly (starred audio review)

  • “Benchley’s writing is lean and efficient—this is his first novel, and also by far his best—and the story is a solid mixture of small-town politics, mystery, and outright terror.”

    Booklist

  • “Steele’s reading makes this classic beast-tale new again.”

    Library Journal (audio review)

  • A New York Times Bestseller

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Gail | 2/15/2014

    " read this a long time ago and it scared me to death! "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Jeanette | 1/31/2014

    " Well, I have been meaning to read this book for many years now. I have seen the movie countless times; it is one of my favorites. I felt it only sensible to read the origin of a story that has become a cult phenomenon. Who knows how I would have judged this novel had I read it BEFORE I watched the movie 100 times. But that didn't happen so instead I am judging this novel, its characters, its plot fluidity and development and its execution against a Spielberg movie. That being said, this book gets only two stars. Benchley's writing is some of the most meticulous writing I have ever read. When it comes to shark attacks, it is quite gripping. In everything else, it is more of a nuisance. The movie/book discrepancy that bothered me the most (more than the fact that Matt Hooper was unlikable and killed off and Quint was sadistic for no other reason than money) was Ellen Brody. In the film, she is a strong, smart, capable woman who supports her husband and is a source of strength for him. In the novel, she is whiny, obnoxious, and ultimately unfaithful to her husband. It is a no-brainer that movies are simpler and less detailed than novels. Most of the time, that is why we usually like the book more than the movie. But in the case of the most famous killer shark, I think less is more. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ryan Splenda | 1/30/2014

    " One of the better horror books I have read that was turned into a movie blockbuster. Benchley successfully portrays the feeling of terror that Spielberg later shows in his 1975 movie adaptation. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Mark Lewis | 1/28/2014

    " One of the very first books, I read right through, as a young teenager. First time, I had ever experienced expletives, usually from Quints vocabulary. Some chapters were tedious to get through, and some were quite exciting. All in all a good read that still leaves the film behind. Some scenes are unequalled in literacy no matter how good the CGI is. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 James | 1/25/2014

    " People had sex in 1974 "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Nicole Pesce | 1/24/2014

    " Was looking for an in-between book until I grab the third in the "Millennium Trilogy" and decided to re-read this; forgot how good it is. I just started thumbing through it again last night, but I'm already halfway done. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Cin Masson | 1/12/2014

    " The movie was actually almost as good. Still one of the scariest movies ever. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kimberly | 1/3/2014

    " Read this at the beach and loved it. It is very different from the movie, though it starts off the same. would have made a great flick as is. You know the story, but it's better. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Randy | 1/1/2014

    " love this book. Read it in high school. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Derek Oberg | 11/30/2013

    " The parts that were good were really good. But a HUGE portion of the book is dedicated to stupid bad marriage relationship drama that really made me want to put the book down. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Arjen | 8/13/2013

    " Grabbed the book from my parents' shelves, maybe 18 years ago. Worthless. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jeremiah Cook | 8/9/2013

    " First read summer of 1997. Reread 2011. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Charles | 4/30/2013

    " could have done with out all the summer and winter people stuff other than that good "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Virginia | 4/22/2013

    " This was a stupidly written book but a really popular, well-done movie. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Rob C. | 11/22/2012

    " what more could be said that isnt said already...this book is a classic "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 deitra | 7/24/2012

    " This book was excellent -- an amazingly quick read. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Ashley | 5/14/2012

    " Love love love love love love love this book! "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Rob | 4/26/2012

    " The rare case of the film being better than the book! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Lukas Thompson | 4/8/2012

    " MY FAVORITE BOOK EVER i absoulutely love this book, the ending in the book is way better "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Brian | 2/16/2012

    " I never swim in the ocean after reading this book. Great book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kim | 10/17/2011

    " Wow, much darker than the movie. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Scott Krier | 9/22/2011

    " Great Movie based on a sub par book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Craig | 8/22/2011

    " A nearly perfect quick beach read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kara | 7/1/2011

    " The first "adult" book I ever read. 5th grade. Felt I was very grown up until I the nightmares started, all based on the first chapter with he description of the swimmer's leg being chewed off. Great, trashy read. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Debbie | 5/17/2011

    " Loved the book and the movie. Book is different so if youve only seen the movie you have to read the book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 F. | 5/14/2011

    " I loved it. I could see why they'd make a movie out of it. This one cost a lot of beach b usinesses a lot of money... "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Nic | 5/10/2011

    " Not as good as it was when I was 10. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Pete | 5/8/2011

    " I try to stay away from books like this but who can resist shark attacks? "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Elissa | 5/6/2011

    " Bizarre, but fun. Different than the film, in a good way. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Perrin | 4/28/2011

    " The movie was better. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Sarah | 4/14/2011

    " The movie is way better, but the book wasn't bad. "

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

    " The first "adult" book I ever read. When the paperback edition came out, I was around 5 years old. It seemed my mom and everyone else had that book. I was fascinated by the cover and got to reading--quite an exercise for a kindergartener. To this day, a real thriller. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Jamie Lee | 3/31/2011

    " The only time I think I'll ever say this...THE FILM WAS BETTER! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Scott | 3/23/2011

    " This was the first adult book I had ever read when I was 9 years old. The enchantment of a deadly, man-eating fish captured my imagination. A truly great story. I don't think anyone ever looked at the beach the same way again after reading this book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Debra | 3/13/2011

    " Stephen King recommended.

    Read the book, then saw the movie. Even though I knew what was coming, I still jumped clear out of my seat when the severed head popped out of the wrecked ship! AAAAAAAAAAAAAAH! "

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

    " I read this as a teen and couldn't put it down. "

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About the Author
Author Peter BenchleyAfter graduating from Harvard, Peter Benchley worked as a reporter for The Washington Post, then as an editor at Newsweek and a speechwriter in the White House. His novel Jaws was published in 1974, followed by The Deep, The Island, The Girl of the Sea of Cortez, Q Clearance, Rummies, and Beast, among others. He has written screenplays for three of his novels, and his articles and essays have appeared in such publications as National Geographic and The New York Times. He has written, narrated, and appeared in dozens of television documentaries. He is a member of the national council of Environmental Defense and is a spokesman for its Oceans Program.
About the Narrator

Erik Steele is a professional actor living in New York City, where he has worked both on and off Broadway and in film. He has toured with the prestigious Acting Company, performing Shakespeare and Sheridan in theaters from Atlanta to Anchorage. He holds an MFA in acting from New York University and a BA from Vassar College.